Well, hey there, Kentucky sports fans. What d’you say we gather around and pay tribute to a group of young ladies who probably don’t get enough love from us on this site? I’m talking about the tenth-ranked UK Hoops team. Matthew Mitchell’s girls play host to the fifth-ranked Duke Blue Devils in a rare Rupp Arena game on Thursday night. It’s the first time that Lexington will showcase a matchup of two top ten women’s basketball teams since 1983.
The Cats are sitting at 8-0 on the season and are one of only 12 remaining unbeaten teams in the country. They’re coming off a 20-point win over No. 11 Louisville in Memorial Coliseum last Sunday. The Blue Devils enter the game at 6-1 with the only loss coming at home to No. 3 Notre Dame by two. Duke has four players who are averaging over 10 points per game, led by freshman center Elizabeth Williams who is averaging a team-high 11.9 points and a team-high 9.4 rebounds. A’dia Mathies leads Kentucky with 16 points per game. Mathies is also averaging a ridiculous 4.1 steals per game to lead the SEC.
So go out and support UK Hoops in Rupp Arena in the biggest non-tournament game they’ll play all season. General admission tickets are $7 and anyone under the age of 5 gets in free. Student and faculty tickets are also free with UK identification and they can be picked up at the Craft Center anytime tomorrow.
Go Cats. Beat Duke.
— Let’s lead off with a bit of sad news: Camp Crean is closed for the winter. IU administration asked students to go home and get in their candy-striped beds. The students did not leave empty handed, though. Those who camped out loitered outside Assembly Hall were given ticket vouchers to assure them a close seat for the game against Kentucky. Any other student will have to show up at 7:00 am on Saturday morning for general admission tickets. In the past, Camp Crean has been open two days before gamedays for students to begin lining up for tickets. The new 7:00 am policy will be enforced from now on. See what happens when you talk bad about Kentucky? We don’t just beat you in basketball, we’ll ruin your traditions. See you Saturday for you “Red Out”, Hoosier Nation.
— To get you ready for the big game against Indiana, Darius Miller will be participating in a live chat with fans at CoachCal.com. Beginning at 1:00 p.m. on Thursday afternoon, fans will be able to submit questions for Darius to answer. Popular questions will likely include: “Can I get a link to the game?”,”Is Poole warming up?”, “What channel is the game on in Louisville?”, “Link?”, and “Any news on Patterson or Lucas?” Have fun with that, Darius. We’ll be sending the KSR live blog goons over to participate.
— Calipari was on the Jim Rome show Wednesday and talked about a number of UK things including the possibility of staying for ten years. “That’s the longest run here I think you could make,” he said. “Because, you know, after you’re done you’d like to live a couple years.” Cal said top-level jobs are exhausting these days, especially with the way the Internet has changed the game. “It’s twelve months a year now,” he said. “Is it a ten year job? Boy, I hope I can last ten years here because I’m having a ball and I’m loving it.”
— The Baltimore Sun has a great article on the Harrison Twins, including an interview with the young men’s father. The article is centered around Aaron Harrison Sr. and the stand-up job he does in protecting and shielding his sons — who are both top ten recruits in the class of 2013 — throughout the recruiting process. Papa Harrison said only one coach has his sons’ phone numbers and that is Maryland coach Bino Ranson — only because he has known the family for years. Maryland is one of the five schools Aaron and Andrew Harrison are considering and InsideMDSports.com believes Kentucky is the Terps’ stiffest competition for the two guards. Still, despite Coach Cal’s history with top-rated guards like the Harrison Twins, Aaron Harrison Sr. said, “We don’t do what the system says is normal. I don’t care about that.” Andrew Harrison is Scout.com’s No. 1 point guard in the class. Aaron Harrison is Scout.com’s No. 1 shooting guard in the class. Now wipe that drool off your face.
— The Big East officially added its five new members on Wednesday and, like you, I’m still scratching my head on this one. It’s not getting any more rational either because the league commissioner suggested that the Big East name won’t change. Commissioner Marinatto said the league’s brand transcends borders, boundaries, or regions. “It’s national,” he said. “Our membership makeup is now reflective of that.” You know what else the membership makeup reflects? A complete lack of regard for the four cardinal directions and the geography of the United States. Change the name. San Diego State is not east of anything.
— In NBA news, Chuck Hayes is expected to accept an offer with Sacramento. Boogie’s Kings offered Chuck a four-year contract valued at $20 million. The Kings have been all over Hayes since his free agency, and with Hayes being from nearby Modesto, California, it’s looking like this is close to being a done deal. The Kings became my favorite NBA team as soon as they drafted DeMarcus — now they’re adding Chuck to the roster to play next to him? Yes, please. You gotta love Tyreke and Jimmer in the backcourt, too.
— Surprise, surprise. Kentucky basketball’s New Year’s Eve game against Louisville is sold out. That atmosphere may challenge what we saw last weekend against North Carolina if Louisville and Kentucky remain undefeated.
— It was a pretty ugly showing for SEC college basketball on Wednesday evening. No. 12 Florida needed overtime to beat Arizona after trying to give the game away to the Wildcats in regulation; Vanderbilt eeked out a four-point win against Davidson in Festus Ezeli’s return to the Commodore lineup; No. 16 Alabama lost by 12 to Dayton; and Georgia lost to Georgia Tech by 12 at home, despite holding a lead at halftime. Wasn’t this supposed to be the year the SEC dominated everyone?
— Hey, Somerset High School football fans, this documentary on the team’s season is pretty neat. There are 13 episodes featuring everything from the season all the way up to the season-ending loss to Holy Cross at semi-state. Enjoy.
— One quick KSR note before we part… Drew The Employee has stepped down from his 9:00 a.m. blogging duties, proving that BTI’s shoes just suck too bad to fill. That, and DTE is working 60 hours a week and couldn’t put in the time to write like he wanted to. Don’t worry, radio fans. You can still hear him every weekday morning on the KSR radio show with Matt from 10:00 – noon. He’s not completely leaving us.
That’s all for now. Talk to you soon.