Its been a long time since we have had a day like yesterday. Kentucky was topic #1 on the sports media circuit and all the usual talking heads blabbered about the Cats and put the team and Jodie Meeks in the center of the national spotlight. I must admit that it was hard to stay focused yesterday as the excitement from Tuesday lingered. I was a guest on a host of radio shows across the South talking about the game and Jodie and Gillispie both found themselves making media appearances throughout the day. A big kudos to the new UK Media Relations folks who truly GET IT and know how to market a program. Yesterday was a banner day for remaking the UK brand.
It was also a big day for the fans and fan interest. Jodie Meeks was the topic of conversation everywhere in the state with new fans and old timers all rallying around the new superstar. It also could be seen on this site as well. Yesterday was the second most viewed day in this site’s history and we had more UNIQUE visitors than any day ever. Here is where Jodie’s day stacks up on the all-time chart:
(1) Patrick Patterson Commits
(2) Day After Jodie Meeks Performance
(3) Billy Gillispie named Coach
(4) Tubby Smith leaves
(5) Jai Lucas makes decision
(6) Chris Singleton makes decision
(7) Tennessee Hate Day
(8) Morgan Newton Makes Decision
Because the unique visitors continue to rise all the time, using those days as an indicator of importance or fan interest is not very helpful. But it is still interesting to note that yesterday more people were on Kentucky Sports Radio than any day in its three year history. Jodie Meeks is setting records for everyone, us included.
A couple of notes on the game….
— With all the talk about Meeks, it is easily forgotten that Darius Miller had a good game as well. He came in, made a couple of shots and played more aggressively on offense. But what was the most impressive thing to me is how comfortable he looked on the court. Except for when inbounding the ball (when he still looked terrified), he seemed more confident in the flow of the game and his defense was much improved. With Stevenson and Harris in foul trouble, Darius needed to play big, and he did. It was great to see for the young man.
— We did get some minutes for Kevin Galloway. He generally played ok, although he did have a couple of big turnovers at the end of the first half. For Kevin, it is all about being in the right spot, knowing the offense and defense and playing with confidence. A lot of his future playing time will be contingent on…..
— The status of DeAndre Liggins. There have been a number of rumors as to what happened with Liggins and to be honest, I think most have been exaggerated. There was an issue there, it was taken care of by the fact he didnt play and from what I understand, he is back to normal on the team. I expect him to play Sunday against Georgia. As for the stories floating around, I would suggest ignoring them. Liggins is still a Cat and I expect him to be in the rotation Sunday.
— Another point of praise for Porter and Harris. They combined for 12 points on Tuesday, had 4 steals between them and 3 turnovers total. Not a rock star game, but not bad either. Both hit a couple of big shots (especially in Porter’s case) and they played pretty stellar defense on UT’s perimeter players. These guys are what they are, but they play hard and give 100% effort. And they were crucial parts of the signature win (so far) of the Billy Gillispie era. For that, they again deserve kudos.
I guess we must now move on to other topics, but savor these last couple of days…..great time to be a Cat fan.