Well after a month of being moderately cranky, somewhat stressed and all-together too busy, the bar exam is over and my journey towards becoming the Heavy Hitter has begun. Yes the bar exam was a long and tumultuous two days, but it is now over and I appreciate all those that wished me well in the last few weeks. It was good to see lots of Kentucky Sports Radio fans in and around the exam and when not enjoying the mid-1970s ambiance of the Executive West, their comments provided a nice diversion from the awfulness that was taking that test. I have now done this twice, once in Virginia (which is where I am licensed) and once now in Kentucky and I will never do it again. For those of you in law school or preparing for it, know that taking the bar may be just about the worst thing you will ever do. There is a lot of studying, anxiety and overall negativity…..a true drain on one’s life. Take your old buddy Matt Jones’ advice……avoid it at all costs. But with the exam now finally over, we can focus on what is important…..the beginning of some of the most exciting six months that UK athletics has seen in some time. Get ready, its coming…..
To the news….
(1) One of the more unfortunate parts of the bar exam today was missing the Kentucky appearance at SEC Media Days. It was a rather uneventful day overall…..lots of media attention for Andre Woodson, as most seem convinced he is the best quarterback in the league. Rich Brooks made an appearance and did the usual question and answer. Here is the link to Rich Brooks and his statements. Not too much eventful although we did find out that UK will have a full 85 man roster for the beginning of practice for the first time of the Brooks era. I expect Rob will have much more on the festivities tomorrow, but from my perspective the story of the day (as it usually is) was Steve Spurrier. When asked about Kentucky, Spurrier gave this beauty…..”I thought we did something by beating Clemson…..and then Kentucky beat them.” You gotta love Spurrier….even though he has lost a bit of his luster and his former University just won a national title, he still comes out swinging. Watch out for the Gamecocks this year…..they will surprise some people.
(2) Bad news today that former UK great Ron Mercer was arrested in connection with a stabbing and assault outside of a strip club in Nashville. Mercer is charged not with the stabbing, but with an assault on a security guard there when he allegedly punched the man numerous times as part of the incident. Ron has had a tough go of it in recent years and this news comes on the heels of his NBA career ending for all intents and purposes. Mercer was a good guy during his time at UK and you hate to see this happen…..but we should have all learned from Pac Man Jones that strip clubs at night in Nashville are not the places to be……someone make sure and get that message to Vince Young and Brandon Wright quick.
(3) So it has been confirmed today to the Lexington Herald Leader that the announcement of Alvin Brooks as the third assistant coach was a bit premature. UK has not formally made an offer to Brooks and at this point the position is still open. However, Brooks is still being considered and dont be surprised if in the next couple of weeks we dont hear that he gets the position. Ultimately I still think Billy Clyde wants this position to be filled by someone with connections with an important member of the 08 class. But if that doesnt happen, it could be Brooks that fills the bill. Former Dukie Rashawn Mcleod however still seems to be the choice as Director of Basketball Ops.
(4) So what about your boy Leonard Washington? Well I have been told that he has either found out now or will find out in the next two days his grade situation. So will Leonard choose for UK or Ole Miss in the next two days? Maybe, but now it looks as if the Pac 10 schools are back in the picture. USC, Arizona St and others are making moves to get Leonard’s services and the pressures to put him on the West Coast are very high on Leonard. What will Leonard do? Well it is hard to say, as he has cut off interviews with everyone in the media until announcement time. But as one observer close to Leonard told me today, “you just never know with this whole thing.” Yeah, tell me about it.
(5) Finally, the news out of Vegas is relatively slim as expected. Some guys that UK is looking at are playing well (Washington, Darius Miller, Czyz) and others are having not so great tournaments (Zeller, Vilarino), but in general the event is adding up to very little. Tournament success in a given event fluctuates (see Zeller who some are saying didnt have a great event but who was MVP at the Gibbons Tournament I attended in North Carolina) and thus tells us little. There has been no real shock news-wise, except the announcement by Terrance Jennings that UK is in his top three. However what we have seen is a UK staff obsessed with the process. They have been at every game of every major UK target and they are borderline stalking (in a good way), the top prospects. These guys are recruiting workhorses that is for sure and UK is out there on the circuit like never before.
Back to normal beginning tomorrow…..we get the UK player tournament back in gear, more from Rob in the afternoon, and our football conference previews get kicking this weekend…..its time to get in gear, the fun is coming.
And oh yeah, you want a downer…..the best sports weekend of the year (Oct 12 and 13 with Midnight Madness, LSU at Commonwealth and Keeneland) is also the day of bar results. Great timing……