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Monday Night News and Views


The lovely ladies pictured above with Anthony Epps, Ryan Lemond and me are very upset I didn’t post our photo from Tin Roof in Nashville last week so they get top priority tonight. My sincerest apologies for taking so long and it was good seeing you again in Louisville.

Moving on, the KSR mobile just touched down in Lexington after a quick trip to Hazard to attend our good buddy Ira Combs’ visitation. The funeral home was packed, because Ira was a rock star in the area, and it was nice meeting and chatting with some of his close friends and relatives, including Oscar and Harold. Ira will be missed by so many; he was a great man who loved this state, specifically his mountains, as much as anyone.

Now let’s do this Monday Night News and Views thing so I can rest up for a long drive to Cleveland tomorrow afternoon…


John Calipari did not win USBWA’s Coach of the Year award.

Virginia’s Tony Bennett was named this year’s USBWA Coach of the Year in a shocking upset, announced today by the USWBA. The USWBA’s President, Dana O’Neil, and Vice President, Pat Forde, likely played a key role in keeping the trophy out of John Calipari’s hands. Cal, who won EVERY SINGLE BASKETBALL GAME HE COACHED, should’ve received the award in a landslide vote because how can someone win EVERY SINGLE BASKETBALL GAME THEY COACHED and still not win Coach of the Year? (Answer: O’Neil and Forde)

Congrats to Bennett, though, and good luck to him and Virginia in the Elite Eight.

Oh wait.

Dan Wetzel explains why Coach Cal was snubbed.

Did you know Coach Cal, Rick Pitino, Jim Calhoun, Billy Donovan and Mike Krzzewskiywski have a combined zero USBWA Coach of the Year awards?

Yahoo’s Dan Wetzel writes, “What’s undeniable is that the process for picking these awards remains flawed. If having a team win every single game, often by a huge margin, isn’t enough, then what did John Calipari have to do?”

Kentucky will hold its open practice Wednesday at 3:10 pm in Cleveland.

Will Big Blue Nation pack the house once again? I’m still amazed by the turnout last week in Louisville. Let’s shoot for half of that in The Land.

Coach Cal knows the importance of rebounding Thursday night.

On his call-in show with Tom Leach, John Calipari said, “It was a heckuva season for us,” meaning it will all be over, if the Cats don’t perform well on the boards. West Virginia ranks No. 1 in all of college basketball in offensive rebounds per game with over 16.5 per contest and Kentucky’s been known to give up second chances off missed shots.

Take the Cincinnati game for example: the Bearcats hauled in 21 offensive rebounds to Kentucky’s 26 defensive. That can’t happen Thursday night; Kentucky MUST control the glass.

Azia Bishop released a statement regarding her untimely suspension.

Bishop was suspended from what turned out to be the final game of her UK career, yesterday’s NCAA second round loss to Dayton in Memorial Coliseum. Today she released a statement about her poor decision that resulted in a missed curfew:

“I had an amazing four years at the University of Kentucky. My season did not end the way I wanted it to, as I was suspended for Sunday’s game due to a curfew violation. I had a lapse in focus and it’s a decision I will regret for the rest of my life. However, it’s a lesson learned and I respect Coach Mitchell’s decision. This will only better me as a person in the future and shape me to become a woman of substance and who Coach Mitchell has taught me to be.

“I would like to thank the Big Blue Nation for all of their support and love that they have shown me over the last four years. I love everyone associated with the Big Blue Nation and the University of Kentucky, and I want to thank you all.”

Ben Howland hired as head coach of Mississippi State.

Our thoughts and prayers go out to the Howland family. I can’t imagine the pain and suffering they’re going through while packing up to move from Los Angeles to Starkville. That’s an excruciating pain no one should go through.

Alabama plans to go after Wichita State’s Gregg Marshall. 

Good luck with that. Marshall will keep winning at Wichita State until a big time program gives him a call. It’s unlikely he’ll leave for a football school, no matter the offer.

Here, enjoy this Willie Cauley-Stein hype video.

Kentucky remains a 13.5-point favorite over West Virginia.

No movement on the line for Thursday’s game since it opened late last night. West Virginia will do all it can to slop things up, so it’s tough to say Kentucky will run away with it. Be careful with that one, gamblers.

Michael Huang has a cool shot of Willie’s dunk against Cincinnati.


Even Robert Durst thinks Willie Cauley-Stein has murdered too many people.

Paul Finebaum will make his Kentucky Sports Radio radio debut tomorrow morning.

Matt’s made a couple appearances on Finebaum’s show, now it’s time for Pawwwl to return the favor. Tune in tomorrow morning as he brings his knowledge of the south to Kentucky Sports Radio.

That’ll do it for now.

Cats. Cats. Cats.

Article written by Drew Franklin

I can recite every line from Forrest Gump, blindfolded. Follow me on Twitter: @DrewFranklinKSR

11 Comments for Monday Night News and Views

  1. Rixter
    11:11 pm March 23, 2015 Permalink

    How can WVU possibly be number 1 in the county in offensive rebounding, Steals, and TO’s forced, and be such a mediocre team? How can they be ranked so low in overall defensive efficiency? Their halfcourt defense must be OFF THE CHARTS BAD!?

    • babydangy
      11:23 pm March 23, 2015 Permalink

      Their half court D is abysmal and their offensive rebounding is skewed a bit because of how many shots they miss, therefore more opportunities for offensive rebounds.

    • joe.eskridge
      2:55 am March 24, 2015 Permalink

      Correct. Great rebounding teams don’t win it all. Great rebounding means your own team is missing shots…

    • Mc12
      9:27 am March 24, 2015 Permalink

      One thing that hurts their defensive efficiency is once you beat the first wave of the press, if you attack there are a lot of easy baskets.

  2. FakeLarryDavid
    11:53 pm March 23, 2015 Permalink

    Pretty Pretty sure Finebaum has been on the show already. Facts are always optional though.

    • TDog
      11:59 pm March 23, 2015 Permalink

      What I came to say. Pretty sure he was on in around the time of last year’s Mississippi State football game. He only talked for like 5 minutes though from what I remember.

  3. RealCatsFan
    8:53 am March 24, 2015 Permalink

    I’m wondering if Cal might instruct the bigs to not go after as many blocked shots since WVU is such a poor shooting team anyway. We often give up rebounding position to go after the block. Might make sense to simply fake a block and then go after the rebound.

  4. RealCatsFan
    8:55 am March 24, 2015 Permalink

    I would be shocked if Bama gets Marshall. I hate to say it, but these also-ran SEC teams look like a coaching graveyard. Grant at Bama and Martin at USC are examples, and I’m sure I can name more of them.

  5. RC
    9:17 am March 24, 2015 Permalink

    A key for us moving forward this tourney is going to be the play of Devin Booker. He can’t buy a bucket right now and he’s a defensive liability overall. We’re going to need someone other than Aaron to make a 3 from the wing/corner. Ulis is playing his best ball of the season right now and we need Booker to join him.

    • satcheluk
      4:23 pm March 24, 2015 Permalink

      He is not a defensive liability.

  6. Mc12
    9:29 am March 24, 2015 Permalink

    This will be a pretty big week for Hawkins in practice I think. If he can emulate the pressure by acting chaotic and out of control, it will help.

    Having two point guards on the court will also make it a lot easier.