Hunting for the perfect Christmas gift for the special UK fan in your life? I’ve got just the thing! The Kentucky Basketball 2012 Calendar is here (featuring UK hero Josh “Jorts” Harrellson on the cover), brought to you by Season Never Ends. Our all-new fourth edition is filled with your favorite UK basketball memories on the days they actually happened – old memories and brand new ones, like over 35 from the 2010-2011 Final Four season. Legendary players, games and moments drawn from over 100 years of the nation’s #1 basketball program.
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You can also find it at the following stores: Allsports (Fayette Mall), Alumni Hall (Fayette Mall, St. Matthews Mall, Greenwood Mall), Kennedy’s Book Store, Kentucky Korner (Fayette Mall, Shops at Lexington Center, Jefferson Mall & others), Joseph-Beth (Lexington Green), Gift Shops at Elk Creek Vineyards (8 locations), Beckers (2 Louisville locations), Fan Outfitters (2 stores in Lexington & 2 in Louisville) and more.
— How ’bout those ladies???!!!! A UK women’s basketball record 14,508 people packed into Rupp Arena as UK Hoops stretched its undefeated record to 9-0 with a win over Duke. The Cats won 72-65 over the nation’s fifth-ranked team in the first game played at Rupp in three years. The young ladies stole the show for Kentucky, as freshmen Bria Goss and Azia Bishop combined for 31 points, 14 rebounds, four blocks and four steals on 15-24 shooting from the field. Junior guard A’dia Mathies hit a career-high tying four 3-pointers for the second straight game and scored a season-high 23 points. She also had four rebounds and four steals. Senior guard Amber Smith had four assists to continue her streak of dishing out at least four assists in every game this season. The win gives Kentucky its first ever back-to-back victories over ranked teams. We can hear you now.
— The real question about UK Hoops now is how far can this team go? The Cats already have wins over two top ten opponents and there are two McDonald’s All-Americans on the bench who haven’t played in a game yet this season. One of those is Samarie Walker, a transfer from UConn, and she’ll be available for game action after the fall semester. Of his team’s potential, Matthew Mitchell said, “I think we can be good. The trick with us is trying to make them understand that this was a great night. This means a lot only if we continue to work really hard, we continue to win games, we continue to get better as a team. I don’t think we are nearly as good offensively as we can become. So I think the ceiling is high for this team. I think we can be good.”
— Moving over to the men’s side of things, Kentucky has a huge game against Indiana on Saturday and I’d like to let it be known that I’m slightly worried. Emphasis on slightly. I fully expect the Cats to go in there and win by 15-20 points but don’t underestimate the Assembly Hall factor. All hatred aside, the Indiana crowd makes a pretty intimidating environment and it’ll be the first true road game for three of Kentucky starters. I can’t wait to see how the team plays in front of such a hostile crowd. #AnthonyDavisSaysShutUp
— That chick from Harry Potter isn’t worried, though:
I have an inbox FULL of these. They aren’t going anywhere.
— Jeff Goodman took a break from making UK SID jokes to team up with Gary Parrish for CBSSports.com’s Player of the Year Watch. Jared Sullinger tops the list but two Kentucky players are in the top ten. Anthony Davis and Terrence Jones are No. 5 and No. 8, respectively.
— A couple of UK football players picked up more All-SEC honors. Danny Trevathan and Ryan Tydlacka were named All-SEC by Rivals.com. Trevathan was named to the conference’s first team and Tydlacka to the second. Trevathan ended his UK career ranked 10th all-time on Kentucky’s career tackle list with a total of 374 stops. Trevathan had a total of 20 games with double-figure tackles in his career, including a career-high 17 tackles in 2010 against Auburn, the eventual national champion, and also against Mississippi State, Ole Miss and Georgia.
— Kentucky freshman quarterback Maxwell Smith was named All-Freshman SEC by SEC coaches and Rivals.com. Smith finished the season completing 84-of-153 passes for 819 yards, four touchdowns and four interceptions in eight games, including three starts for the injured Morgan Newton. Smith’s best game of the season came in Kentucky’s 30-13 win against Ole Miss, when he completed 19-of-36 passes for 283 yards and two touchdowns. His 283 passing yards set a single-game school record for a true freshman quarterback.
— Hold the phone on Chuck Hayes to Sacramento. After reports that both sides are very optimistic in getting the deal done, Minnesota has snuck into play for Chuck’s services. The Kings offered Hayes a four-year $20 million contract — that’s a lot for Chuck — on Thursday and now the Timberwolves are putting together an offer of their own. Hayes’ agent said the two teams are on equal ground in attaining his client. Please go to Sacramento, please go to Sacramento, please go to Sacramento.
— Tayshaun Prince, another former Cat/NBA free agent, will be staying at home for the upcoming half season. Tayshaun signed a four-year deal with Detroit worth $27 million. At his age, this was probably his last chance to leave the D. He was rumored to be going to Miami until the Heat signed Shane Battier on Thursday. Now, it looks like Tayshaun will finish his NBA career with Brandon Knight as his point guard.
— One other NBA tidbit to note: The Lakers had a trade in place for Chris Paul but the NBA intervened. Paul to Los Angeles appeared to be a done deal until NBA commissioner David Stern stepped in and said “not happening.” Stern told the league-owned Hornets to keep Paul after NBA owners protested the trade. The NBA is all kinds of messed up.
— Shout out to KSR’s good friend Big EZ for his appearance on SportsCenter Thursday afternoon. He’ll be stopping by today with a KSR post about the Indiana game.