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USA For Africa’s Friday News and Views

After a week that seemed to last a month, we’ve finally made it.  Through a healthy mix of faith and belief in each other, we’ve successfully navigated a work week without a Kentucky basketball game and now get set for Saturday with our collective hearts and minds on point.  It was the type of collaborative effort not seen sinceUnited Support of Arists for Africa banded together, coincidentally, 26 years ago today.  What only seemed like a boyhood fantasy for a seven-year old Matt Jones transformed to reality on this day in 1986 when music superstars like Michael Jackson, Bob Dylan, Stevie Wonder, Kenny Rogers and Dan Aykroyd joined forces to record “We Are The World” (later John Calipari’s motto for UK basketball) to help fight battle disease and famine in Africa.  The project, along with the Hands Across America event, earned nearly $100 million dollars.  Yes, I know what you’re thinking.  We’re working on getting BTI, Kige Ramsey, Eric C. Conn, Daniel Solzman and Ramel Bradley into the studio for a single to benefit the new arena fund.  The formula works.

Now onto a few UK notes from all over the globe…

 – The hot topic of the day was thedebate about whether or not Rupp Arena should be renovatedor the city of Lexington and UK should work to find a way to make a new arena a reality.  There are a number of factors that could influence the plans from both sides, but what was most interesting to me was the debate surrounding the historical value of Rupp Arena versus the allure of a new facility.  As I mumbled and stuttered my way through Larry Glover Live Thursday night, we took a couple of calls from people who thought that Kentucky might not necessarily need a new arena because of the mystique surrounding the building and some compared it to Allen Fieldhouse and Cameron Indoor Stadium.  I think those comparisons are misplaced a bit for a few reasons, but most notably the fact that Rupp Arena is not old enough to carry that historical significance.  One caller compared the situation to baseball, with Allen and Cameron being Wrigley and Fenway and Rupp being like Riverfront Stadium.  I think that’s an accurate comparison.  Rupp Arena, though certainly historic in many ways, carries a mystic because of the teams that have played in it, not because of the actual building.  Rupp Arena is a lot like when you’re growing your hair out.  It’s in that awkward stage where it just looks overgrown and messy.  You can let it keep growing and eventually let it get to where you want it to be.  Or you can cut it and start all over again with something fresh and handsome.  Your call.

 – If you like reading things written by smart people, here is Matt’s CBS story on the arena situation.  Like I said, he’s smart.  Check it out.

 – In actual basketball news, Kentucky plays Georgiain basketball Saturday in what will be the first of a string of games that will help decide a fuzzy SEC East picture.  Exciting stuff, huh?  Outside of the news that Larry Brown is around tweaking things and working with Coach Cal and the Brett Dawson story that Terrence Jones has had a picture of Trey Thompkins in his locker before the last Georgia game, there isn’t a lot of new, sexy stuff floating around.  All of that will change Friday, however, when Coach Cal has his media opportunity.  Yes, my friends, there will be news.  After all of this time, there will be news.  Rejoice.

 – When the football debate rages every offseason about whether or not Kentucky can ever be a true contender in the SEC, those who think they are destined to play toward the bottom often cite the lack of spending in comparison to the rest of the league.  Those people got a little proof for their argument Thursday as ESPN released (via Forbes Magazine) the spending and revenue of every SEC football program and Kentucky ranked 9th in money made and 10th in money spent.  The Cats made just under $32 million, while spending just under $13 million. 

 – Speaking of spending, take a tour of Georgia’s newly renovated football facility.  I know it’s hard not to get caught up in the tour guide looking uncomfortably awkward in every photo, but it looks pretty nice.  I didn’t see any room for the church potluck though… 

 – With the potential to lose Tee Martin to Alabama seeming to be a little more likely today than it was yesterday, Kentucky might be faced in the very near future with finding a way to make up for his recruiting prowess elsewhere on their staff.  According to this profile in the Atlanta Journal-Constitution, new assistant Steve Pardue and his deep ties inside the state of Georgiajust might be the person Joker counts on the most.  Phillips has declared numerous times that he expects all of his assistants to pull significant weight on the recruiting trail and, according to the story, there seems to be an even bigger burden on Pardue.

 – There were no former Cats voted as a starter to the NBA All-Star game (how did we lose a poll???), but Rajon Rondo will likely earn a reserve nod.  But, that doesn’t mean you should be content with that.  Make sure to vote John Wall into the Skills Challenge so he can duplicate his Sports Science segment and throw passes through fire rings or whatever it is they do for that now.  You don’t want to lose this one too.

 – For those of you who love politics and things that shouldn’t have been on TV, Tracy Morgan had an interesting take on Sarah Palin on TNT’s pregame show  Thursday night.  Warning:  It includes a word you wouldn’t use in front of your mother unless you wanted her to tell you that you would go blind.

 – Two eyes.  Two ears.  A chin.  A mouth.  Ten fingers.  Two nipples.  A butt.  Two kneecaps.  A penis.  I just described to you the Loch Ness Monster.  The reward for his capture, all the riches in Scotland.  So I have one question.  Why are you here? – Creed Bratton

That’s it for now.  Stay tuned throughout the day as we get you all fired up for revenge against Mark Fox and the Bulldogs.  The fun gets going with Matt and Zach at 10am, on Talk Radio 1080.  In the meantime, appreciate all the wonderment of the Sober Billy Gillispie, Sean Miller. 


See you in a few…

Article written by Thomas Beisner

56 Comments for USA For Africa’s Friday News and Views

  1. ColoradoCat
    11:55 pm January 27, 2011 Permalink

    i love the office! first?

  2. bluesweat
    11:56 pm January 27, 2011 Permalink

    Is that Richie Farmer front row center before the buzz cut?

  3. tenacious_j
    11:57 pm January 27, 2011 Permalink

    Wham! J-j-j-jitterbug!

  4. Jbizz
    11:58 pm January 27, 2011 Permalink

    Why does Sean Miller have such tiny hands?

  5. Thomas Beisner
    12:02 am January 28, 2011 Permalink

    4, I bet he smells like cabbage.

  6. Nice...
    12:06 am January 28, 2011 Permalink

    I’m sure Hoosier fans will think “they’re back” after beating Illinois tonight… it’s almost sad really.

    12:07 am January 28, 2011 Permalink

    respectfully, i believe you mean mystique, not mystic…

  8. Mountain Blue
    12:08 am January 28, 2011 Permalink

    How’s this for the new arena’s name,”My Old Kentucky Dome”?

  9. Computer Blue
    12:20 am January 28, 2011 Permalink

    I haven’t seen the Chicken Bucket. What does Rupp lack except luxury boxes? It seems like it would take a long time for those luxury boxes to pay for a new arena.

  10. Jbizz
    12:27 am January 28, 2011 Permalink

  11. mocha
    12:28 am January 28, 2011 Permalink

    Checking KSR from iPhone before sleeping on the couch. Just had an argument with over girlfriend about whether or not blood is actually blue. FML.

  12. R U Fo Real
    12:37 am January 28, 2011 Permalink

    First of all, regardless of his small carnie like hands, Sean Miller has ridiculous handles.

    Secondly, the Tracy Morgan vid made me laugh hard. he is so great.

  13. Computer Blue
    12:37 am January 28, 2011 Permalink

    It’s certainly a nice arena, and maybe it’s more impressive in person, but in pictures the KFC Yum! Center doesn’t look that much better than Rupp. They have luxury boxes, a TV strip that goes around the arena, and a better center scoreboard/speaker system. The outside honestly is not that attractive. Maybe the concourse area is much nicer? Am I missing something for what it is in person?

  14. bleedblue
    1:03 am January 28, 2011 Permalink

  15. Shootin' Blanks
    1:14 am January 28, 2011 Permalink

    Im pretty sure the mass that was supposed to go to his hands went to his huge head.

  16. tdogg4033011
    1:14 am January 28, 2011 Permalink

    LaPHONSO Smith said UK is the most “overrated” team in the country on College Basketball show …..

  17. Guusje84
    1:16 am January 28, 2011 Permalink

    Did anybody just see LaPhonso rippin’ Kentucky about being the most overrated team in College Basketball???

  18. SaggyWheels
    1:32 am January 28, 2011 Permalink

    only part i read was the Rupp/New Stadium section – killed it. but of course, the historical value issue really doesn’t have a huge impact on the decision. Kentucky could have 2 of the nicest basketball gyms in the country. pretty big draw for tournament locations, close to lots of the country (east coast/mid west at least).

  19. believedat
    4:31 am January 28, 2011 Permalink

    LaPHONSO Smith can suck it. We’ve played a really tough schedule and we are 15-4 with key wins over UL and ND. That doesn’t look as good now that i write it. Wins over Florida, Tenn, and Vandy hopefully twice will really help our resume. Back-Back SEC Regular Season Champs too. Seems like just yesterday we were mediocre; now look at us.

  20. the truth
    4:33 am January 28, 2011 Permalink

    Sean Miller looks like billy g

  21. flaashley
    5:36 am January 28, 2011 Permalink

    sober billy gillispie…genius! Beisner, you da man. Holler at Steve Kunze sometime at work.

  22. SexnNursinHomes
    6:43 am January 28, 2011 Permalink

    sean miller has the littliest hands in the history of man, neanderthal, and caveman. A gay leprechaun’s penis would look HUGE in sean miller’s hand. I mean, I have never seen a leprechuan’s penis, but I’m sure it has to be small.

  23. ShagOnSports
    6:43 am January 28, 2011 Permalink

    Rupp is a outdated and there is littel historical value in my book!!! I am not a big fan of the Bucket but it is nice… Build an 19000 seat arean with great seating that is a throwback fieldhouse (camden yards of arenas) style design with luxary boxes aroud the top of the lower level… Give the students half of one of the lower levels plus and endzone… Create something special, it can be done…

  24. BPsycho
    6:44 am January 28, 2011 Permalink

    #15 Agreed. It does look like if he were to fall over his head would hit the ground before anything else.

  25. Catfan123
    6:44 am January 28, 2011 Permalink

    Anyone else see Indiana rush the floor after beating Illinois? Wow I thought a school with that much tradition would act like they have been there before

  26. GeorgeCostanza
    6:45 am January 28, 2011 Permalink

    19) don’t forget Washington who leads the Pac10

  27. BPsycho
    6:47 am January 28, 2011 Permalink

    #22 Lol Leprechauns are lil horndogs! I’ve been told, if you were to make it to the end of a rainbow you would be raped in a bucket of gold….

  28. Mash
    6:48 am January 28, 2011 Permalink

    Hearing UK is out of the running for Jon Davis.

  29. SexnNursinHomes
    6:53 am January 28, 2011 Permalink

    27- HAHAHHAHA!! to early for that BP. hahahah classsssic.

  30. bluesince66
    7:38 am January 28, 2011 Permalink

    First of all WHO is Laphonso Smith?

  31. Al's IndiCats
    7:43 am January 28, 2011 Permalink

    Smith can kiss the underside of my left Testicle. When you think of LaPhonso, think of him as a pastel helium balloon filled with cow pies, it looks nice but you know it isn’t going to fly because it’s full of Bullsh!t.

  32. JP15
    8:03 am January 28, 2011 Permalink

    I have been to Cameron and Phog Allen. In my opinion they are dumps although Phog is certainly historical. I would like a new arena, but Rupp is nicer than both of those places. If you build an arena you certainly can’t make it smaller. It is too tough to get a ticket now. By the way, I know I am in the minority, but Wrigley and Fenway are dumps, as well. They are glorified double A parks. I guarantee you whenever those stadiums get torn down, the fans will be saying, “What the heck took so long!” The thing that makes Rupp a cool venue is all the stuff that happens around the corridors before the game- the UK fan shops, the restaurants, hotel and taverns. People show up 3 and 4 hours before the game. That does not happen anywhere else in America and that is because of the hotel and shops that are connected to the arena.

  33. catty
    8:18 am January 28, 2011 Permalink

    The Lady Hoops team played a great game last night. We need to support all our team Beezner

  34. old-school
    8:24 am January 28, 2011 Permalink

    Rupp is fine and it’s what happens on the court that will draw fans and players.

    YUM is state-of-art, has all the lights and flash of a circus, and if you watch games on TV – you can tell after halftime that thousands of fans are distracted by the shiny things and alcohol pouring in the concourse and they miss the first five-ten minutes of the second half.

    Rupp wasn’t built for a show – it was built for BASKETBALL and it was built so 24,000 Kentuckians could come watch the team they adore. We don’t show up to be entertained by flashing lights, blaring music and glitter.

    Could we use a new sound system and other updates? Possibly – that’s not a huge deal – but to suggest that we demolish Rupp so we can jump on board the new trendwagon of techno-music boxes filled with Las-Vegas styled light-shows deminishes the main act at Rupp – KENTUCKY BASKETBALL.

    I walked in to the YUM Center recently for the St. John’s game and my eyes were distracted with nearly every flash and every sound. They were parachuting t-shirts from the rafters, shooting them up with air-guns from the floor, every-time out resembled a between-inning circus act one might find at a minor league baseball game. Three minutes later, fans would remember there was a basketball game going on.

    When I walk into Rupp, there are two focal points – the game on the court, and the banners in the rafters. There’s a message about Rupp that this building is about the game and the program we love. Nothing else matters.

    Not to be forgotten is the financial status of Kentucky. Taxpayers would be asked to foot much of this bill and quite honestly – this is not a priority. Government on all levels needs to CUT-CUT-CUT-CUT big time – and spending millions on a new basketball arena in Lexington so UK can keep up with the Jones’ down I-64 is wasteful – especially when what they already have is in many ways still superior to the new Circus of Lights on the river.

    Keep KENTUCKY BASKETBALL as the focal center at Rupp. It has served UK and her fans well for over three decades and can do for three more decades. More lights and luxury boxes won’t take the sting out of a loss, nor will it add more joy after a victory. It’s about the game!

  35. KYStout
    8:29 am January 28, 2011 Permalink

    It was cool when all of those singers got together and ended starvation in Africa back in the eighties.

  36. Big Blue 66
    8:30 am January 28, 2011 Permalink

    25. yeah but no one in the stands that rushed the court can remember, the last time Indiana was relevant none of them were alive and some of their parents werent born yet either!

  37. KYStout
    8:30 am January 28, 2011 Permalink

    Renovating Rupp Arena is the dumbest idea I’ve ever heard in my entire life.

    This new mayor – I don’t think he get’s it.

  38. old-school
    8:32 am January 28, 2011 Permalink

    And Tracy Morgan is a complete jerk.
    Forget about politics for a minute. There was as time when a real man would never say something like that about a woman on national television. It’s a lost art called “being a gentleman” and it’s something this generation cares little about.

    I’m not taht old – only mid-40s – but I cringe when I think about what’s now considered acceptable compared to just a few decades ago.

    There was a time when any self-respecting gentleman would ahve stood up and slugged Morgan for such a comment, all in order to protect the honor of a lady – whehter he knew her or not.

    I don’t care if it’s Sarah Palin, Hillary Clinton or who the woman is – men need to be more respectful and it starts by not glorifying stupid punks like this guy who’s apparent only talent is poking fun at others.

  39. KYStout
    8:35 am January 28, 2011 Permalink

    #8 – It should be nicknamed that by the fans. MOKH should be sung by everyone in attendance in the closing minutes of our blowout victories. The fact that we don’t use that glorious song more to our advantage disturbs me greatly, and is a situation that needs to be rectified urgently.

  40. The Korean Bookie
    8:35 am January 28, 2011 Permalink

    Tracy Morgan….when keepin it real goes wrong

  41. RidgeRunner
    8:44 am January 28, 2011 Permalink

    Leprechauns always have to be on top or you can be cited for murder. Just use caution there, as thats all I’m sayin’ if you find yourself engaged in such an act.

    By the way…USA for Africa, at least Michael Jackson looked like a human being in that pic. Had kinda forgot that image.

    Old school has a cool point about Rupp right now having 2 focal points (1 court & 1 banners). -Nice!

    I would love to have a new arena on campus that seats 30k with a few bells & whistles but not like the carnival-show that Yum tries to do.

    Go Blue

  42. Wildcobb Salad
    8:48 am January 28, 2011 Permalink

    Also, who is that sack of crap behind Miller? It must be depressing that those clothes are even too small.

  43. Anonymous Ted Danson
    8:50 am January 28, 2011 Permalink

    It blow my mind that people continue to talk about a 30K on campus arena. If we get a new arena neither of these will happen, EVER.

  44. Wildcobb Salad
    9:01 am January 28, 2011 Permalink

    38 Is a grade A fuddy-duddy. Excuse my language.

  45. TBone
    9:04 am January 28, 2011 Permalink

    11) How’s your back? Hope you were on the side that blood isn’t blue. Blood is a brighter red when oxygenated and in the arteries and is a very deep red when depleted of oxygen in your veins. The deep red is so intense in color that it has almost a purple tint. Appearing somewhat blue only in comparison to the bright red color we are most familiar with from the oxygenated variety we see from wounds and TV.

    No I’m not a doctor but I did stay at a Holiday in last night, and they have free internet. From there I know how to get on Wikipedia, Yahoo Answers, and access medical definitions in hematology.

  46. Ben
    9:27 am January 28, 2011 Permalink

    #38 Well stated! Could you imagine if 4 White men were talking about a black woman like that? Can’t see that actually happening, but the uproar would be great to say the least! Society has definitely changed and not for the better.

  47. Emmert still sucks
    9:49 am January 28, 2011 Permalink

    ….joined forces to record “We Are The World” (later John Calipari’s motto for UK basketball) to help “fight battle disease” and famine in Africa.

    Just curious what “battle” disease is…..

  48. DMT
    10:14 am January 28, 2011 Permalink

    Rupp’s “historical value” lies in the games played there, not the building itself. Back in the 70’s, Rupp was built as a cutting edge arena with the latest bells and whistles. Unfortunately, it hasn’t aged that well. I love Rupp as much as the next person, but to stay competitive we need a new downtown arena.

  49. lmao
    10:15 am January 28, 2011 Permalink

    Regarding the updated UGA facility…..Is the name REALLY Butt-Smear? Why not call it skidmark?

  50. Shootin' Blanks
    10:21 am January 28, 2011 Permalink

    22) Unfortunately I get to see a Leprechaun penis every day 🙁

  51. Just saying
    10:30 am January 28, 2011 Permalink

    Rupp is big, and thats it. Its really not even that big. The absolute only reason 23,000+ fans fit in there is because of the small seats with no elbow room in the lower bowl and the hemorhoid creating bleecher seats in the upper decks. The sound system is ancient and that thing hanging in the celing with bullhorn coming out of it is atrocious.

    UK needs a new arena, but I disagree with making it bigger. The Yum Center is 21K and is set-up nice for all viewing. If you have not been there, quit dogging it, it BLOWS Rupp away. The concourse, the atmosphere, and by all means the arena itself. If people say Yum isnt nice because of the silver exterior then theyre just being haters. Its THAT nice.

    Im in the crowd of bulding a stadium to compete with Yum, and make it 1-2K bigger (leaving the capacity at 23K) with adding the luxury suites, and in-game accomodations. I agree the game is main focus, but at times during the games, or timeouts, when the crowd at Rupp likes to sit on their hands and sleep, the bright lights, music and flashing score boards get the crowd even more into the game.

    Dont believe me? Then drive on up to the Yum! Center, and buy a ticket. Then go to a UK home game. I promise after leaving Rupp, you will say “Damn we need a new place”!

  52. Just saying
    10:35 am January 28, 2011 Permalink

    By the way, UKs stadium would have to be “as nice” as Yum!. The Yum! Center was built and designed to attract a NBA team. Lexingotn will NEVER get an NBA team, therefore the arean doesnt have to be designed that way. Yum! has practice courts built attached, and onsite metting and office space (for NBA execs). UKs new arena could simply be new, flashy, and 1-2K bigger than Yum! and UK would have everything they need for the next 30-35 years.

  53. Just saying
    10:37 am January 28, 2011 Permalink

    opps…would NOT have to be “as nice”…

  54. Shields Eyes
    11:32 am January 28, 2011 Permalink

    Do They Know its Christmas > We are the World

  55. pcefrog5
    1:21 pm January 28, 2011 Permalink

    #38 Every time you post something all I here is this guy:

  56. pcefrog5
    1:22 pm January 28, 2011 Permalink

    should be hear