Yeah, you read that right. No wrestlers, broken down MLBers or tiger-blooded actors this morning. We’re going educational making Matt Jones sit up and smile in his grave (he is dead, right?). Today we get going by saluting the 138th anniversary of the Comstock Act, known in academic circles as the awkward acne-faced brother of the BYU Honor Code. The law made it illegal for any “obscene, lewd and/or lascivious” materials to be sent through the mail, which temporarily shut down the Herald-Leader’s operations.
And that about sums it up. Hope you took notes.
Now onto a few UK notes…
– It’s all high fives and hugs around the Kentucky basketball program now that he Cats have reeled off two straight wins against the two teams ahead of them in the SEC East and they have a fairly good chance of still getting a bye in the SEC Tournament. One question that still remains though is who can the Cats count on as a go-to guy? Calipari spoke about it after the game Tuesday and noted that finding a “go-to” guy isn’t just an offensive thing and the Cats need to find someone that can get the big stops too. There’s no question that Brandon Knight is the closest thing to that player that this team has and he’s been saying all the things you want to hear from your star and catalyst despite missing some game-winning shots this season. Just as was the case with the road issues and the problems in close games, it only takes one made shot for this team to feel confident again that they have their closer.
– With an off day on Wednesday, Kentucky’s coaches stopped in to visit Braeden Anderson, the big man who was formerly committed to DePaul. The Cats want to add a big man to their 2011 class and Anderson and juco forward Stan Simpson appear to be the two primary candidates. Anderson said Wednesday that he is down to Kansas and Kentucky and would decide in a few weeks between the two. He is expected to visit the Jayhawks in a few weeks.
– Speaking of recruiting, we had Scout.com’s main brain in charge, Evan Daniels by for a live blog and he said that he believes UK’s three top targets for 2012 are Shabazz Muhammad, Andre Drummond and Archie Goodwin. While those are the three at the top of the wish list, Daniels also threw out a name they’re pushing after that we haven’t heard much about. Five-star power forward Brandon Ashley rates high on their list of targets, as well. Ashley is rated by Scout as the top power forward in the 2012 class and holds scholarship offers already from the Cats, Arizona, Cal, Oregon, Stanford, UCLA and Washington. If he wants to play his televised games when someone is actually watching, you can assume the Cats are favorites. If there are other things in play, it becomes less certain, I suppose.
– As far as the actual game goes this weekend, Kentucky and Tennessee will enter the game on opposite sides of the emotional spectrum. While the Cats seem to be emerging from their funk, the Vols appear to be entering the deepest pile of ish yet, thanks to dropping five of their last seven games and Bruce Pearl’s fate appearing to be more grim by the day. Even worse, after the loss to Mississippi State Saturday, Bruce Pearl challenged his team to show more leadership. Point guard Melvin Goins responded by taking a shot at his coach and saying the Vols have a leadership problem “from the top, all the way down”. Sounds like they’re all on the same page for Sunday.
– Adding to the uncertainty for the Vols is the injury to Brian “Pig” Williams, who will sit out against South Carolina with an injured back. His status is not known for the Kentucky game, but it’s Kentucky and it’s their Senior Day. Safe money is on him playing. That’s the only way you get to eat the postgame spread.
– It wasn’t surprising, but it was still not what you hoped for as Georgia pounded LSU Wednesday night. As you’re probably already sick of hearing, the Cats need Georgia to lose (home against Alabama) or Vandy to fall to Florida in order for a three-way tie to be avoided in the SEC East race. Either way, they will know their fate heading into Sunday’s game with Tennessee, where a win is needed in every scenario.
– I make no apologies for my unhealthy fascination with where Billy Gillispie will end up next year. After all, we’re BFFs now. But the man who seems to contantly have the most updates on the subject, SportsByBrooks, said Wednesday night that Gillispie has not received one phone call yet about any jobs. He did note that he expects Clyde to eventually end up at Texas Tech, where he’s very close with boosters, but it’s still surprising to me that no one is even floating out some feelers to him. Or, maybe it’s not. Actually, I can understand it.
That’s it for now. Stay tuned throughout the day as we get things going for Tennessee Hate Day Friday. Matt will be joined on Kentucky Sports Radio by JT and The Sklar Brothers, which is equally odd and awesome. He promised me he’d ask if they’d be funnier if they were conjoined. Make sure you check it out. In the meantime, try to caption this picture. Or, if you’re Jerry Tipton or Alan Cutler, try not to be scared by it.
See you in a few…