Likely because of my affinity for “Shawshank Redemption,” I have always been fascinated by prison breaks. The idea that you find a way to get out of a situation specifically designed to keep you in, strikes me as the most ingenuous of accomplishments, even though it is clearly shunned by society. The people who escape out of prisons are by their very nature not some of society’s best, but to find your way out of a maximum security situation does show cunning, even if it is for a result that harms society. Today we learned that notorious Mexican drug lord El Chapo Guzman has escaped from a maximum security prison in Mexico and is currently on the loose. El Chapo is the worst of the worst and the violence that he has overseen over the last 25 years is atrocious. Still the fact that he found a way out of the most severe prison in Mexico is fascinating and worthy of study. The official story is that he crawled through a 30 by 30 hole in his shower, but that strikes me as implausible at best. Clearly someone helped him and considering the corruption in Mexico, it could have been an individual high up in the government. It is the second time El Chapo has escaped, and the last time he did it, he stayed gone for nearly 13 years. For the better part of that time, it is believed the Mexican government knew where he was and simply let him be…now the question is will they do it again?
To the non-Mexican drug lord news this week:
UK Basketball Recruiting Comes Into Focus
We assumed after this past week of AAU events that the status of UK basketball recruiting for 2016 would become a bit clearer and it did. Some of the news wasn’t the best as #2 ranked Jayson Tatum spurned the Cats and others by picking Duke in a decision that really surprised no one. The reality of this class is that Duke is set up to have the #1 overall class relatively easily thanks to a home state stud (Harry Giles) and getting Tatum early in the process. Many are crediting winning the title for Duke’s success, but the Blue Devils were likely to get both players even before the title as Coach K has adopted Calipari’s recruiting strategy and is now competing against the Cats for virtually all of the same players. This will mean they will win their share of battles and today was one of them. For Kentucky however, there is some good news. The Cats look to be in good shape with Kobi Simmons and Rawle Alkins, two players with tremendous ability and high-impact scorers. I think both are Kentucky’s to lose and the Cats are sitting in the driver’s seat early in the process. Miles Bridges may have been the star of the week and he is likely Michigan State or Kentucky, meaning the Cats and Izzo will have a battle over the Michigan product. If UK can land Bridges, then that threesome will be the clear #2 overall class and UK will be set after pairing them with Tai Wynyard and likely a couple of other stars. Malik Monk is an elite talent that UK will try to bend out of Arkansas, but if Kentucky keeps up the heat on the threesome above, potentially adds another (maybe Markelle Fultz a shooting guard that picked up a UK offer this week and had a strong showing), then the Cats are set. Lose some of this group and it becomes a bit more troubling, but even with Duke’s success, I like where the Cats stand as of today.
Attendance at the KSR Radio Tour shows has been absolutely amazing. Fans are showing up in droves and there have been some really fun events. I think our show Friday at the Kentucky Speedway was one of the best in a long time and this week we have these stops ahead. Come see us:
Monday: Cynthiana (Cynthiana Country Club)
Tuesday: Whitley City (Whitley City Public Library)
Wednesday: London (Sleep Outfitters)
SEC MEDIA DAYS
The circus that is known as SEC Football Media Days begin this morning and the entire South will be looking to the coaches to learn about next season. I often get criticism for not taking our show to Media Days (we are sending Tyler there and she will have reports all week), but honestly I am not sure why there is so much hype about having “Radio Row” down there. I have never been to either football or basketball Media Days and while I think the circus is an interesting thing to watch from afar, it gives no real information that advances the ball at all. We may go some year in the future just for entertainment value, but seriously, what are you going to learn by hearing coaches give press conferences? In my view, very little, so I prefer to watch the event from afar and continue on our Radio Tour. But we will have a LOT of coverage from the event on here all week and Tyler will give you everything you need to know as you need to know it. She was excellent last year in capturing the environment and I know she will do it again this time.
image by Jason Spear
NBA Summer League Continues
I have watched a great deal of NBA Summer League over the last week and will watch a good deal more this week before we head out to Las Vegas Wednesday to see it up close. The big stories so far include the Aaron Harrison signing by Charlotte, a massive step for Aaron and a great chance for him to make the team this fall. Archie Goodwin has played very well for Phoenix and may be solidifying a better spot in the rotation this season with his strong performances. Karl Towns and Julius Randle have both looked good in high profile appearances with a lot of hype. Towns in particular showed some great skill in his two games and has the announcers drooling about his future. All in all, things have been very positive for UK guys, with no one having a bad debut in Summer League…a good sign as they all move forward this summer towards their NBA careers.
— I saw Ted 2 this weekend and it was exactly what I thought it would be…overall just blah, but with some really funny parts. I had a couple of scenes that had me laughing until I cried but a lot of the rest was just filler. Still, it is worth your time if you liked the first one and/or like Seth MacFarlane. If you don’t then…don’t. Also check out “Love and Mercy” if it is playing close to you…a movie about The Beach Boy’s Brian Wilson’s life told in two parts…very good and one of the better movies I have seen so far this year.
— The NASCAR race at the Kentucky Speedway was great on Saturday night…the new aero package allowed the drivers to pass much easier and the Speedway was blessed with good weather and no bad luck for the first time since getting the Sprint Cup Race. I had an awesome time watching the event while sitting with the most random mix of people imaginable (Joe B Hall, Jack Givens, Nick and Drew Lachey, Papa John, Matt Bevin, Terry Meiners, Tom Hammond and Mike Battaglia). I highly encourage those of you who haven’t been yet to Sparta to make a trip….it is worth your time.
— Finally, some of you like my random book recommendations. This one is a little older but worth your time.
“Stumbling on Happiness” is a look at what makes people happy in their own lives and how they are often wrong about convictions that you believe lead to your satisfaction. It is one of the more interesting psychology studies I have read and if you like Malcolm Gladwell or Freakonomics-type books, you will enjoy it.
That is it for now…have a good Monday