It’s finally that time again. After touring the country, fighting off blizzards, braving water main breaks while being a man and holding it, and also catching some of the nation’s best basketball, our chickens will be returning to the coop and bringing all their ridiculous antics with them. You’ll be glad to not have to share their talents with the rest of the nation but I’ll just be glad that I don’t have to help run this blog anymore and monitor some of your all’s often off-the-wall comments (example: Should I delete a possibly defamatory post for calling a Duke player a female body part or is the truth of that statement an affirmative defense?).
If you haven’t been following along this whole time, make sure you at least swing over and check out some of the great recent posts as they conclude their time with CBS. My personal favorites include: Beisner’s post on Calipari and what he means to Kentucky, Drew’s final top 10 list and also his calling Thomas Jefferson’s famous estate “Your Monticello,” Matt’s ruffling of the Cardinal’s feathers by speaking his mind on Pitino and, last but not least, Tomlin’s always classic FAQ (The North Carolina one? No, that’s a different FAQ). Great job homeys and way to represent KSR and the Big Blue!
Now onto the news:
– The obvious big news from late Monday, which Mr. Wireman also outlined below, was the prediction by Larry Vaught that Patrick Patterson would be taking a spot in the Senior Day lineup. Larry bases his prediction on knowledge that Patterson will have a more than normal amount of family and friends in attendance and he’ll also be completing his degree this Spring. I think I’m passing along the feelings of everyone else in the Big Blue Nation when I say thank you so much Pat and the way you represented the Cats on and off the court will never be forgotten. Here’s hoping that we get to see your jersey hung in the rafters sooner rather than later.
– The Cats received their verdicts in the AP and Coaches poll, holding down the 3 spot in both. ESPN’s Bracetology this week has UK as the 1 seed in the Syracuse bracket, facing the winner of OK State and Wake Forest in the 2nd round (Ford vs Cal as the ‘Boys try to down UK like they did KU?). Personally, the bracket doesn’t worry me much. ‘Nova and Georgetown have both been kind of unimpressive lately and even though we get Ohio State and Evan “The Villain” Turner, at least we don’t get our earlier bad match up with Wisconsin, which I wasn’t looking forward to. Turner could be our Devan Downey from anotha motha though. The bracket also has 3 former UK players in Mark Coury (Cornell), Derrick Jasper (UNLV) and Matt Pilgrim (OK St). Take a look and tell me what you guys think about this one.
– Calipari talked a bit in the coach’s teleconference on Monday about the loss to UT. He got a bit testy when it was suggested that Bruce Pearl created problems for Cal on Saturday. While defending himself, Coach Cal pointed to UK’s horrid three point shooting and the fact that UK was still able to come back because of UT’s “hold the ball” game plan. I know coaches can talk their way out of anything but I have to agree 100% with Cal here. The slow down, run the shot clock, offense led to some horrible shots by UT with the clock running out and the few good shots they did get were due to personal defensive breakdowns by our players and not by any ineffective defensive schemes. The scheme was working and you could see that in their shots and in the comeback that the Cats were mounting. We just shot 3’s very poorly and didn’t get the breaks needed after we tied the score back up.
– Cal also called the loss a “good loss,” and said that he hopes the Cats will use it to improve their intensity when they play Georgia on Wednesday. I am a firm believer in the “good loss” and I do tend to agree that this was probably a good one for the Cats. Hopefully it will show them that they can’t always toy with opponents and later use their superior skill to comeback and win. I’m also hopeful, like Cal suggested, that the Cats will adopt the killer instinct they need in order to (a) not allow a double-digit lead to occur; and (b) when they’re able to mount their own substantial lead, they’ll go for the kill instead of allowing the other team to make their own comeback (another chink in the armor they’ve shown throughout the season).
– If you haven’t yet heard about the Calipari-Maker’s Mark bottle coming out, check out the website here. You can get a guaranteed spot in line and also get the other info you’ll need in order to get a bottle and then get it signed by Cal at Keeneland on April 9th.
– A bit of sad news for a UK recruit, followed by some good news: Mike Gilchrist and Kyrie Irving’s St. Pat’s team did not receive the injunction they were seeking in order to compete in postseason play this year, which means the defending New Jersey TOC winner’s season is over. On a more positive note, both Stacey Poole and Brandon Knight have led their teams to their respective class’s State Semifinals.
– We’re in the first week of March, which means that March Madness is right around the corner. Here’s a couple things you need to get you in the mood: “Ballin’ Is A Habit” compiled a collection of videos from this weekend’s buzzer beater games and you’ll also want to check out this video of highlights from UK’s current incredible season.
Welp kids, that’s about all I got for now. Be sure to check back all day Tuesday because the boys are back and I’m sure they’re bringing their A games. BTI kicks it off with the Picks to Clicks next and then we’ll start to get you guys ready for a rematch with the Bulldogs down south on Wednesday. Go Cats.