***Before he took the solemn vows of initiation at The Brown Tweed Society, Evan Hilbert and I enjoyed some good times at WildcatBlitz.com and here at Kentucky Sports Radio. I liked the way he laughed, his firm embrace and, mostly, his preview of the starting lineups of opposing basketball teams. So, just like the bat signal, I’ll be posting these each game, hoping that it brings Evan home. Actually, scratch that. This is the third year I’ve been doing this without so much as a telegram. Evan, you’re dead to me.
Let’s be honest. This isn’t a bad way to start a day. It’s not often that you can get blessed with a short mornign of a BTI post and then a basketball game, but thanks to some holiday scheduling, that’s exactly what we have today. Before they take off for a short holiday break, Kentucky’s basketball team will take on a Winthrop team that, based on the transitive property of sports, is better than Florida, thanks to a win over Jacksonville. However, it seems that their fans aren’t exactly confident in what coach Randy Peele is putting out on the court this season. Let’s hope they’re right. There’s no reason to go limping into Christmas with a frown.
Now let’s meet the guys who are getting a big blue lump of coal this year…
2010-11 stats: 11.1 ppg, 3.9 apg, 4.6 rpg, 46% from the field, 28% from three
Middleton, a former three-star recruit who chose the Eagles over the Donnie Jones family tree of Marshall and UCF, enters his second season as full-time starter at the point. As a sophomore last season, he led the team in scoring with just over 10 points per game. He scored 19 points against Wake Forest earlier this season. His favorite basketball player is Kobe Bryant and his favorite book is The Bible.
2010-11 stats: 12.5 ppg, 4.0 rpg, 45% from field, 39% from three
Andre Jones has emerged as the team’s second-leading scorer in his first season as a starter. His favorite basketball player is Kobe Bryant and his favorite book is The Bible.
2010-11 stats: 15.4 ppg, 3.6 rpg, 2.6 apg, 3.0 turnovers, 44% from field, 43% from three
The young pup of the Winthrop starting lineup, Dreher is also the team’s most potent scorer. After sitting out the season’s first three games, Dreher debuted with 20 points and 6 assists against Wake Forest. He shoots 43% from downtown, but is only 2 for his last 9. Some say his success is causing him to get a big head. Other’s just say that it’s just his overized media guide picture making it appear that way. Media guide lists him as the son of Robert and Vallerie Dreher. His sternum disagrees. His favorite player is Kobe Bryant and his favorite book is The Bible.
2010-11 stats: 5.5 ppg, 7.5 rpg, 33% from the field
Corbin has started the last three games after sitting out the first eight games due to a suspension. The reason for the suspension was not specificed, but I have a feeling it was for letting Andre Jones use his ID. He is coming off the best performance of his career, an 18-point and 6-rebound outting at Dayton. Makes no mention of Kobe or The Bible in his profile. Outcast.
2010-11 stats: 6.8 ppg, 5.4 rpg, 1.9 bpg, 31% from the field
The St. Bonaventure transfer has put together shooting gems this season of 2-15 and 4-16. Mix those in with a healthy number of 2-7s and 1-5s and you have a big man shooting an astoundingly low 31% from the field. Want to make a joke about it? Neither do I. Even a bolo tattoo can’t save this from being the most terrifying media guide photo of all time.
Head Coach Randy Peele
Entering his fourth season as Winthrop head coach, Randy Peele looks to take his team to the NCAA Tournament for the third time. His profile says he “rolls up his sleeves and goes to work everyday”. It should say “he takes those pastor chubby cheeks to work everyday”. Either way, he works. And he works hard. You can’t find a game picture of him online where he’s not screaming. REPENT!
– Gideon Gamble (G): Shooting 50% (13-26) from downtown.
– Justin Burton (G): Backup point guard who logs 24 minutes per game. Makes up for his 20% from three with 20.3% from the field.
– George Valentine (F): The team’s leading rebounder at 7.4 per game.
Notes: UK is 1-0 all-time against Winthrop…That game was in 2003…Erik Daniels led the way with 15 and 8…Winthrop counts Andie MacDowell as a famous alum…Did you know they’re re-making Footloose?…Neither did I…Ok, let’s do this…Matt, Drew and I will live blog at 12:30…I’ll be on the pregame show with Matthew Laurance and Jared Prickett on 1300 WLXG at around the same time…Terrence Jones better not be napping right now…