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Signing Day’s News & Views

Do you ever have moments when you reflect on your life and get completely creeped out by yourself (looking at you, SexnNursinHomes)? I had that moment the other night, when I realized that I spend way too much time to worrying about what teenage boys are going to do with their lives.

One of the many eccentricities that come with being a Kentucky fan is an almost unhealthy obsession with “what’s next,” whether it be recruiting, draft decisions, or championships. It’s a common habit of any sports junkie, but Kentucky are infamous for their fixation on the next crop of superstars, particularly since Cal came on board. It’s why we’ve spent most of our post-championship week trying to read the minds of two high school seniors, who will finally put us out of our misery Wednesday night at 7:30 p.m.

— We’ve known about Shabazz Muhammad for a while now. Shabazz made his first KSR appearance in Aaron’s UK Basketball Blog’s Article Links back on July 23, 2010 as a mere blip on the Class of 2012 radar. Months later, he emerged as one of the top 2012 recruits, whom Cal had been after from the start. Since then, he’s been at the top of everyone’s 2012 wish list, and it’s not hard to see why. Shabazz is an offensive machine, a lefty who is as comfortable attacking the rim as he is pulling up and draining a jumper. His talent is undeniable, which explains his long list of suitors. Early on, Shabazz seemed to be leaning towards staying in Las Vegas to attend UNLV, but eventually struck them from the list for bigger offers.

The last few months of his recruitment have been hard to read, with Kentucky falling in and out of the top spot, Coach K. lingering in the shadows, and UCLA remaining near the top despite an incriminating Sports Illustrated article about the program and current coach Ben Howland. In fact, many in the media think that the only reason Howland wasn’t fired was because he was so tight with Shabazz and his family, and that the superstar could be the savior the program needs to get out of the gutter. Shabazz’s father told SNYtv that his son would sit down with his parents and make a final decision Tuesday night, which is contrary to Shabazz’s tweet Monday night indicating he had already decided. Most assume he’s a lock for UCLA, but could this be a sign Shabazz is reconsidering? ESPN’s Dave Telep said that although the Bruins were the leaders, Kentucky “has the current momentum.” Only time will tell.

Nerlens Noel first turned heads on the recruiting scene back a year ago for his unbelievable shot blocking ability and even more unbelievable hair. Originally a 2013 recruit, Noel reclassified in February of this year after a showstopping performance in the Hoophall Classic. Since then, he’s taken over Shabazz’s number one spot in the 2012 rankings and vaulted to the top of every elite teams’ wish list. He’s similar to Davis in his ability to dominate a game defensively and force teams to plan around him, and his offensive skills continue to develop. Noel would help Kentucky maintain its defensive integrity for which it became so infamous this season, and based on his numerous recruiting diaries, Twitter followers, and general “swag,” he doesn’t shy from the spotlight, an essential quality for any Kentucky player. Noel’s down to Kentucky, Georgetown, and Syracuse, with most analysts predicting he’ll pick the Cats. But, in his latest ESPN diary, Nerlens was adamant that he hadn’t made up his mind yet, and sat down to make the decision with his family on Tuesday night.

— If both Shabazz and Nerlens decide to come to Lexington, they will have an immediate impact on the team next season. They have different strengths (Shabazz on offense, Nerlens on defense) that together would complete Kentucky’s roster and infinitely increase the Cats’ chances at defending the title. The class we have coming in so far (Poythress, Goodwin, Cauley, Harrow) is good, but landing Shabazz and Noel would make it great. If we only get one, I would argue that Noel would be more valuable due to his defensive presence, which we saw in Davis this past season proved so invaluable; however, Shabazz would give the Cats the firepower they’ll probably lose in the draft in Lamb and Miller. If both decide to go elsewhere, it will be unfortunate, but not the end of the world. This is Kentucky, after all, and Anthony Bennett’s still on the board.

— Of course, all of this speculation leads up to the ESPNU Signing Day Special, which will air Wednesday at 7:30 p.m. ET. Nerlens and Shabazz will finally announce their decisions during the special live from the ESPN studio in Charlotte, North Carolina, where both recruits are in town to play in the Jordan Brand Classic. Our very own John Calipari will make an appearance during the program, and that’s gotta be a good thing, right?

Don’t worry, you won’t have to watch it alone–we’ll be live blogging it, because face it: we’re already going through withdrawal.

— Feeling antsy about tonight’s events? You’ll be glad to hear that Alex Oriakhi dropped Duke from his list Tuesday, leaving North Carolina, Missouri, Xavier to compete with Kentucky for the talented transfer.

— Moving on…as Matt reported below, Calipari and the National Championship Trophy will take a bus/train tour across the state on Thursday and Friday, stopping in the following cities: Ashland, Pikeville, Hazard, Frankfort, Elizabethtown, Owensboro, and Paducah. Scroll down to Matt’s post for more details, including times and locations. You’ll never need a new Christmas card picture ever again.

— The tour doesn’t stop there! On Saturday, the trophy will be on display at two Verizon stores in Lexington and Louisville, thanks to UK IMG and Verizon. The general public is invited to come take a picture with the trophy at the following locations:

Saturday, April 14th from 10am – 2pm
Verizon Wireless in Lexington, KY (near Hamburg)
1895 Vendor Way
Lexington, KY 40509

Saturday, April 14th from 4pm – 7pm
Verizon Wireless in Louisville, KY (near The Summit)
4830 Norton Healthcare Blvd.
Louisville, KY 40241

— It was a rough night for the baseball team, who lost to #19 Louisville, 12-0. It was the team’s first shutout of the season and their first non-conference loss. It was by far the worst loss of the season for the 30-4 squad, but they can get back on the horse this weekend when they head to Arkansas for a three-game series.

— News broke Tuesday night that Arkansas fired Bobby Petrino following his affair with Jessica Dorrell, a 25-year-old female football employee, that came to light after the two were in a motorcycle crash last week. During a press conference to announce the firing, Arkansas officials revealed that Petrino knowingly deceived and acted inappropriately in Dorrell’s hiring process, including giving her $20,000 before she was hired. And you might as well quit those daydreams I see stirring in your head: Mitch Barnhart won’t hire Petrino.

Speaking of Barnhart, Wednesday is a big day around these parts: he will be on the radio show around 11 a.m. to discuss the state of Kentucky athletics, which is pretty good these days if you haven’t been paying attention.

The rest of the day, we’ll be getting you ready for the big decision at 7:30 p.m. Odds are that since both Shabazz and Nerlens made their decisions on Tuesday night, news will trickle out before the ESPNU special, so keep that finger on refresh.

Until then, enjoy this picture from the Bobby Petrino support rally in Arkansas today:

Article written by Mrs. Tyler Thompson

No, I will not make you a sandwich, but you can follow me on Twitter @MrsTylerKSR or email me.

61 Comments for Signing Day’s News & Views

  1. NL
    11:36 pm April 10, 2012 Permalink


  2. BigBlueJim
    11:37 pm April 10, 2012 Permalink

    Don’t forget Anthony Bennett,he’s a BEAST!!

  3. BigBlueJim
    11:39 pm April 10, 2012 Permalink

    I know all the word is that he goes to Florida, but I don’t see Eddie Munster out recruiting Coach Cal! And if Noel gets away, Bennett would do just fine!

  4. UK's Freshmen
    11:40 pm April 10, 2012 Permalink

    Hahaha…. 12-0.

  5. Han
    11:46 pm April 10, 2012 Permalink

    2) Bennett’s not deciding til May, I think (perhaps influenced by the fact that UK’s players are waiting to decide til end of April). Focus will shift to him and Jefferson and Oriahki after tomorrow.

  6. Richard
    11:49 pm April 10, 2012 Permalink

    Baseball is America’s most popular sport it’s always good to beat Kentucky in a sport that actually matters.

  7. trouljaboy
    12:00 am April 11, 2012 Permalink

    6) is a butthurt Louisville fan. Lol

  8. Adam
    12:00 am April 11, 2012 Permalink

    C’mon down Nerlens Noel! Shabazz have fun going out in the Sweet 16. If Barnhart won’t offer PETRINO in our inevitable Coaching Search following the upcoming DEBACLE of a season he should be FIRED.

  9. Richard
    12:01 am April 11, 2012 Permalink

    Glad to be relevant in a major sport against UK

  10. petrinoposse
    12:02 am April 11, 2012 Permalink

    what is WPS?

  11. LOL
    12:03 am April 11, 2012 Permalink

    6 I will give you a meaningless baseball game in trade for a regular season and final four beating every year.

  12. LoganBleedsBlue
    12:03 am April 11, 2012 Permalink

    Im saying it, both Shabazz and Noel become Cats tomorrow night at 7:30. Of course I have no sources just a blue blooded circulatory system.

  13. Little Brother
    12:04 am April 11, 2012 Permalink

    You may have beaten us in the Final Four on the way to your 8th national championship, but we got the last laugh tonight in a regular season baseball game. #L1C4

  14. WhatSheOrder?FishFilet?
    12:08 am April 11, 2012 Permalink

    Unfortunatley, BBN will embarrass itself on Twitter tomorrow if one or both don’t pick UK.

  15. Hahaha aha loserville Sucks
    12:12 am April 11, 2012 Permalink

    Hahahahahahahahahahahahahahahahahahah loserville, what a joke! Loserville fans are pathetic losers with no lives! Haha #CSB4 (cards suck balls 4ever) that can be your new hashtag homo’s!

  16. Michael
    12:15 am April 11, 2012 Permalink

    Poor lil brother. Trash talking in baseball. They got a cute lil program. Lol hahahaha Ei8ht is Great.

  17. tyson
    12:18 am April 11, 2012 Permalink

    people are actually wanting Petrino hired at UK? i dont believe that. he has screwed over every school he’s been to. why would people want him?

  18. GrumpyOldDude
    12:20 am April 11, 2012 Permalink

    6 – Heard of the NFL? The league that whips baseball’s backside in this country?

    10 – “Woo Pig Sooey”

  19. 00BBN00
    12:28 am April 11, 2012 Permalink

    6. Meh. Whatever floats your boat.

  20. Richard the original
    12:29 am April 11, 2012 Permalink

    Baseball is America’s pastime. Basketball is a regional sport that no one outside Lexington cares about!

  21. Hal
    12:32 am April 11, 2012 Permalink

    boogie had 25 and 17 tonight. kid’s doin work.

  22. Win or lose
    12:49 am April 11, 2012 Permalink

    UK is ranked No.1 in baseball as well. LOL, win or lose, they are still better than Louisville. Pitching rotations play a large part of wins and losses in the regular season, that is why you generally play a series against teams. The number 1 ranking says all you need to know idiot tard fans

  23. TylerFan
    1:04 am April 11, 2012 Permalink

    Tyler makes it hard
    to fully understand what Bazz and Noel will do.
    Ultimately she knows!!!!!
    Ride on Tyler!!

  24. David
    1:36 am April 11, 2012 Permalink

    17 – I don’t think you can say that Petrino screwed over Arkansas. They were ranked top 10 in the nation and arguably should have played in a BCS bowl last year. He might have made bad judgement calls but Arkansas wasn’t forced to fire him. It’s not like he got the program suspended from playing in post season or anything like that. They still have a heck of team and whoever gets that job is coming into an awesome situation as long as players don’t start transferring and decommitting

  25. This Guy thinks Richard the original is a BUM!!!
    2:01 am April 11, 2012 Permalink

    Baseball’s America’s past time….blaee, blaee, blaee, bullsh##, blush##, bullsh##. Basketball is a regional sport…..blaee, blaee, blaee, bullsh##, blush##, bullsh##. Baseball is a sport that really matters…..blaee, blaee, blaee, bullsh##, blush##, bullsh##.

  26. lolcats
    3:44 am April 11, 2012 Permalink

    Calipari and Petrino at the same school? seems about right.

  27. UKBlue
    4:34 am April 11, 2012 Permalink

    I will be so happy when all this recruiting crap is over.

    For any UL fan to ever say anything about Cal after the embarrassing debacle UL has sitting on their bench who wears a Colonel Sanders white suit & got a raise, take a look in the mirror.

    Petrino can flush is coaching days good bye, defiantly no NFL team & more than likely no NCAA team will deal with his megalomania ass ever again.

  28. Clerk Kellogg
    5:43 am April 11, 2012 Permalink

    Why is the NCAA trophy NOT on display at an AT&T store (since they advertised on CBS and are big sponsors of NCAA Mens Basketball)?

  29. BigBlueSkyDog
    5:58 am April 11, 2012 Permalink

    6) Is there anyone under the age of 90 that really believes baseball is the most popular sport in America?

  30. Azubuike's Bicep
    6:00 am April 11, 2012 Permalink

    29- Yeah, but they all live in Mexico.

  31. Typical UofL fan
    6:05 am April 11, 2012 Permalink

    Whoo hoo! We beat you guys in baseball! Everybody knows that baseball is the greatest sport in America. You guys can have your NCAA basketball championship. We’d rather have our Big East trophy as it helps our fanbase to manage their expectations, keeps us from having such a big target on our backs, and allows us to keep our mediocre, over the hill coach. Who needs Terrence Jones for two years when we can have Kyle Kuric for four? Besides everybody knows we’re really a football school anyway.

    6:19 am April 11, 2012 Permalink

    I would rather watch grass grow as to watch baseball. About the same amount of action!!!

  33. catscatscats
    6:21 am April 11, 2012 Permalink

    I wonder if Coach Cal knows if these guys are coming ahead of time? If you remember he stated that he thought Jones was coming when he picked Washington.

  34. Joe
    6:29 am April 11, 2012 Permalink

    I will be really disappointed if we lose Noel to Georgetown. Surely we could outrecruit them. I could understand losing him to Syracuse. Just like it is going to be difficult to get Muhammad away from UCLA. He is a left coast guy, and getting him away from his mom and dad will be tough. But Noel goes to G-Town and Muhammad goes to Duke, that will hurt.

    I don’t know what else UK can do. We just won the National Title, we have the hottest coach, we send more guys to the NBA, and we have room on the roster and playing time. If we lose these guys, I guess it just wasn’t to be.

  35. SexnNursinHomes
    6:57 am April 11, 2012 Permalink

    TT- hhaha- all the time.

  36. Ridge Runner
    7:19 am April 11, 2012 Permalink

    SexNH….Look at it like this my friend, if she refers to ya…she likes ya. haha

    No worries Ms t. We all are a bit pre occupied with the “news” on the horizon.

  37. LET'SgetNINE
    7:34 am April 11, 2012 Permalink

    who announces first tonight ?

  38. Bradley
    7:35 am April 11, 2012 Permalink

    You can’t really blame Petrino. He just assumed what wouldn’t get him fired at Louisville would be no different at Arkansas. Besides, it’s not like he paid to have a baby killed or anything.

  39. tanya
    7:36 am April 11, 2012 Permalink

    Where in Frankfort? What date and time?

  40. bluetooth
    7:37 am April 11, 2012 Permalink

    was wondering how you would respond to a shoutout from TT snnh …. lucky dog

  41. Big O
    7:59 am April 11, 2012 Permalink

    Ms.T you took lots of space and text to tell us nothting we don’t already know. The business side of KSR is coming out more and more. You used to report news, now you guys (and gal) are just trying to make news. If you don’t have any news- heck just post some pics. Remember Matt Jones has a favorite color and it s GREEN!!!!!

  42. Beatle Bum
    8:06 am April 11, 2012 Permalink

    Bazz is the better get. He may be the longer shot for the cats, but he is the one that compares to MKG and Davis. He is the one that is ready now. He is the difference maker. As a UK fan, I will admit that, regardless of where he goes.

  43. kentuckyjoe
    8:10 am April 11, 2012 Permalink

    Yay for sexn. You made it to the front page. Ms T may have a secret crush on you. And I believe that she really does know where these guys are going to school and she’s keeping the secret. C’mon Ms. T, you can tell us; we won’t say anything.

  44. duhville cat
    8:13 am April 11, 2012 Permalink

    35) Happy Birthday Sexn…..!

  45. Azubuike's Bicep
    8:35 am April 11, 2012 Permalink

    Can we please limit the amount of “sour grapes,” reactions if we don’t get one of these guys. I want both and will be disappointed if we don’t get one of them. It’s annoying to hear and see people try to justify why they didn’t like/want them anyways. We all want them. If we don’t get them, then it is what it is.

  46. GrumpyOldDude
    8:41 am April 11, 2012 Permalink

    I’m mentally prepared to get neither player and will be ecstatic if we get one/both. Look at last year’s team… Cal We Trust.

  47. BG KY Dave
    8:44 am April 11, 2012 Permalink

    I hope we get them both and make a run for number 9!!!

  48. Typical U of L fan
    9:06 am April 11, 2012 Permalink

    What’s even more pathetic is these players probably read this site and THEN decide to go to UCLA and the Big East. Nothing like a bunch of over-obsessed Cayuts fans to drive away recruits (and women too, I’m sure). Rick will win more with less. Missing out on these recruits will not bode well for #9 ANY time soon. Face it, 2011-12 is over and you haven’t won a game in about 9 days. Fans have already moved on to baseball, and L owns you in that. This is a nightmare for Cayuts fans…good luck filling up all your scholarships this year after the exodus of players who can’t get out of Lexington soon enough. Notice how players usually stay in the ville longer? Think about it Cayuts…for once.

  49. Susan
    9:09 am April 11, 2012 Permalink

    I was thinking that it seems like winning a national title more often than not has a negative effect on recruiting in the short term. ..Maybe because it seems like the goal has already been reached, and kids want to be part of the upward momentum of a program, not the maintenance. Hopefully I’m wrong, and we get both these guys though.

  50. bigbill992001
    9:11 am April 11, 2012 Permalink

    NN-his lips are bigger than his hair.

  51. Azubuike's Bicep
    9:13 am April 11, 2012 Permalink

    48- Not sure if you are making fun of typical UL fans, given you name, or you are a real unintelligent UL fan,(redundant,) but I’ll take 1 year players with championship banners. As opposed to 4 year players, abortions, Chane Behanan’s inability to back up his words, Marra’s clowns, and no championship…

  52. BlueFins
    9:16 am April 11, 2012 Permalink

    Are we really talking junk over college baseball?? Little Bro has nothing to gloat about, so he’s trying to get us going over a baseball game. Honestly, who care? What Richard/Richard the original/lolcats/Little Brother (all the same guy that still lives with his mommy) is really afraid of is losing Strong to Arkansas, so he tries to be funny with his posts to mask his insecurities.

  53. BlueFins
    9:28 am April 11, 2012 Permalink

    #46 Yes, we do notice players tend to stay longer at UL. It’s because they SUCK or are in jail!! Even the hamburger All- Americans you get aren’t developed under little Ricky.

  54. Real UK Fan
    9:31 am April 11, 2012 Permalink

    Are we to assume that the Arkansas administration actually cares about how people represent their university? It is pretty obvious their counterparts at ul don’t share the same moral decency.

  55. ChicagoCat
    9:32 am April 11, 2012 Permalink

    Everyone remember when we hated Petrino at Louisville and despised his shenanigans with the Falcons?

    Let’s not forget that. I for one, don’t want him no matter if we win. At this point you almost have to call him a sociopath – he does bad things and either doesn’t realize it or doesn’t care. Kentucky shouldn’t sell its soul to be good at football. The people that want Petrino are the people who think UK can be a national contender regularly in football. Not gonna happen.

  56. Rixter
    9:34 am April 11, 2012 Permalink

    Thanks to the Championship, my level of interest in ‘what comes next’ dipped just below the obsessive line. I still hope they get all these guys, I hope they have a great year, but if they don’t….. this year’s trophy buys them a few years in my book.

  57. BlueFins
    9:45 am April 11, 2012 Permalink

    Hey Typical UL Fan, it’s been about 18 days since you won your last basketball game! If I’m not mistaken, you lost your last basketball game. Do you remember who you lost to? Didn’t your team get like a bunch more rebounds and shots than that team, and yet still didn’t have the talent or coaching to beat that team. So how the hell are you going to be a better team next year when you have the same team as you did this year?? You used up your magic beans this year troll.

  58. Rockfield,KY
    9:50 am April 11, 2012 Permalink

    So I guess Joker can continue having affairs, as long as he doesn’t get into a motorcycle wreck with any of them women that might cause it to come to light. Or he can’t hire any of them.

  59. DerbyDemon
    9:54 am April 11, 2012 Permalink

    A BIG shout-out and Happy Birthday to Sexn. Your comments make my day!

  60. ChicagoCat
    10:07 am April 11, 2012 Permalink

    58 – Two things: (1) The affair itself was not what got Petrino fired. It was the fact that he lied and tried to cover it up, gave this women $20,000 before she was hired, and got her hired over 150+ other people.

    (2) Your comment on Joker, sadly, did not surprise me. I’m going to go ahead and assume you don’t have anything to back that up other than your presumptions, which I’m sure are purely based in rational thought.

  61. CalifCatFan
    10:46 am April 11, 2012 Permalink

    I’m jealous. SnNH got a mention by Ms. Tyler. Lucky dog.