For the second time in 2020, one of Kentucky’s top assistant coaches is being courted by a different team; this time it’s Kenny Payne and the New York Knicks. On Saturday, more news came out about the potential of Payne leaving Lexington to join the Knicks as an assistant coach. More on that in a second.
Continuing with the depressing tone, yesterday had a very similar feel to the middle of March as the MAC became the first FBS conference to postpone its college football season. Pat Forde, along with other national writers, came out saying they are hearing the potential of the other conferences following suit. There will be more on this below, along with the rest of the news you need to start your Sunday.
Kenny Payne to the Knicks?
Last month, Adam Zagoria released a report that the New York Knicks had an interest in Kentucky’s Kenny Payne for a vacant assistant coaching position, regardless of who they would hire to take over the team. Late last month, the Knicks hired Tom Thibodeau as the new head coach and the pursuit of Payne began.
In some ways, this feels very similar to earlier this year when Kentucky football assistant coach Vince Marrow was offered a job by Michigan State. For Marrow, he had a close relationship with the newly hired Spartans head coach, Mel Tucker.
In a similar instance, Payne would be able to reunite with his good friend “World Wide Wes.” That goes without mentioning the opportunity to coach Julius Randle and Kevin Knox again. The Knicks have also been rumored to be making plans to attempt to sign Devin Booker and Karl-Anthony Towns.
Speaking with the Lexington Herald-Leader’s Jerry Tipton yesterday, Payne said that it will not be an easy decision whether to stay in Lexington or move on to the NBA. Click the link below for more on that interview:
The biggest pro for Kentucky? Payne’s son Zan is a walk-on on the team and he still does have two more years of eligibility.
If I am Mitch Barnhart, I give Calipari’s head assistant a blank check. Tell him to name his price to remain in Lexington.
College Football season could be in jeopardy
While the Kenny Payne news is consuming fans on the hardwood, it appears that the start of the college football season is very much in jeopardy.
The first domino to fall came early yesterday morning with a report that the MAC will not play college football this fall. Stadium’s Brett McMurphy said that Northern Illinois was the primary school to begin the trend for the decision, as the Huskies’ president had said that she would not allow her school to play the sport.
After the MAC’s decision made the wires, the snowball effect began to take place. Pete Thamel came out with the following:
Source: Big Ten presidents are meeting today. All options are on the table. There's some presidential momentum for canceling the fall football season. It's unknown if there's enough support to make that decision today.
— Pete Thamel (@PeteThamel) August 8, 2020
Then there was this:
Prominent industry source: "I think by the end of the week the fall sports will be postponed in all conferences."
— Pat Forde (@ByPatForde) August 8, 2020
Power 5 source to @Stadium: “College football season is done. I don’t think everyone immediately follows MAC, but it gives other league presidents 1 more reason to make an easier decision. Biggest thing is unknown long-term impact of COVID & liability issues involved"
— Brett McMurphy (@Brett_McMurphy) August 8, 2020
And in return, all of our reaction:
Fingers crossed, but it appears again to be anyone’s guess.
Skyy Clark will not reclassify
While talking with Cats Illustrated’s David Sisk, Kentucky basketball target Skyy Clark said that he does not have any plans to reclassify to the Class of 2021 and instead will remain in 2022.
Clark is rated as one of the top players in ’22 and is a prospect many believe to be a major UK lean. For more on the guard and all recruiting news, be sure to listen to Jack Pilgrim’s Sources Say podcast. No one is covering recruiting better.
Davis, Adebayo up for NBA Awards
How about some good news? Former Cats Anthony Davis and Bam Adebayo were both named as finalists for NBA awards.
Davis is nominated for Defensive Player of the Year alongside Rudy Gobert and Giannis Antetokounmpo. Adebayo joins Brandon Ingram and Luka Doncic as finalists for the Most Improved Player.
For more on the announcement yesterday, click below:
Reds win second straight over Brewers
Behind a three-run first-inning homer by Eugenio Suarez, the Cincinnati Reds won their second straight game last night over the Milwaukee Brewers 4-1.
In his second start of the year, Anthony DeSclafani pitched six shutout innings to help get the Reds to within one game of the .500 mark.
The Redlegs will turn to their ace Sonny Gray this afternoon at 2:10 p.m. to try and sweep the second-place Brewers. Head over to KSBar and cheer on the Reds!
Best Thing I Saw This Week
I always love ending the morning post with something to make you smile. For me, my favorite thing I saw this week again came from Rex Chapman’s Twitter. Enjoy what happens when you combine Phil Collins and deer.
Since Phil Collins is trending.
You’re welcome… pic.twitter.com/TjxlycnRBs
— Rex Chapman?? (@RexChapman) August 8, 2020
That’s the news you need to start your Sunday. Go Cats!