I’m exhausted from a long weekend of UK football and Calipari fantasy camp and I’m sitting in a borrowed room at the Hyatt to write tonight’s night post, so we’re going to run through this one. But before we do, I just want to mention, once again, that Andre Riddick and Todd Svoboda participated in the first alumni game tonight. I was a huge Riddick fan growing up and it was great seeing him back and still in basketball shape. And kudos to whoever set that up.
Oh, and Krebs did a 360 dunk, too.
The UK alumni charity basketball game lived up to the hype, and exceeded it. Games of that nature tend to get boring at times, lacking any effort or true competitiveness from the players, but tonight we saw a group of former Wildcats that have long heard the comparisons between each other from fans and they were anxious to settle it on the court. To be honest, I expected a boring game and a decent crowd. But what we got was an actual competition in front of a near-packed and electric Rupp Arena. The boys put on quite a show for Big Blue Nation.
The Blue Team, coached by DeMarcus Cousins and Butch Carter, walked away with the win, led by John Wall’s MVP-worthy performance. Wall finished the game with a triple double: 40 points, 10 rebounds and 10 assists. He said Eric Bledsoe told him he couldn’t score 40, so he scored 40. Patrick Patterson and DeAndre Liggins backed him up with 20 points apiece.
At one point in the game, DeMarcus, disappointed in Patterson’s effort, walked over to the scorer’s table and asked for his stats. “Gimme Pat’s stats,” he told the statistician. “I’m about to take his ass out of the game.”
That’s coaching, folks. Check out Tyler’s Instragram video toward the bottom of our running diary for more examples of Boogie’s in-game coaching.
Michael Kidd-Gilchrist and Brandon Knight did all of the work for the White Team. Knight put up a team-high 30 points and seven assists, followed by MKG’s 26 points and 14 rebounds. Terrence Jones added 22 and Anthony Davis only managed to score 12, although three of those came on the Play of the Night.
The total attendance was 19,225. On a Monday night. In September.
John Wall said he wasn’t surprised at all by the turnout. “It’s a basketball state,” he said.
Yeah, but still. Almost 20K??? You people are crazy.
Eric Bledsoe thinks UK will win it all next year. He’s not the only one who thinks that, either.
There were a handful of important visitors in town for the game, as many of you already know, and things seem to going well for them in Lexington, according to this tweet from Jason Jordan:
Uh, yeah, according to this text #Kentucky is doing a really good job at hosting recruits for visits again.
— Jason Jordan (@JayJayUSATODAY) September 10, 2013
Okafor? Booker, maybe?
Whoever it is, they’re having fun and I assume that goes for the entire group.
Last night at Cal’s house and again this morning on Kentucky Sports Radio radio, Jay Bilas bragged about how great of a guy John Calipari is off the court. That wasn’t any more apparent than it was tonight when Calipari announced that his fantasy camp raised over one million dollars for charity. I’d like to hear what the Calipari naysayers have to say about that. One million dollars raised for those in need, right here in the bluegrass.
Lost in all of the excitement from the incredible show Monday night is the fact that the Louisville game is only days away. Mark Stoops held his weekly press conference luncheon earlier this afternoon to discuss it and he had this to say about Teddy Bridgewater: “He’s just very good at what he does. He has a great feel in the pocket. He eludes the pressure when and where he needs to, and the rest of the time he sits in there and distributes the football. But he’s very athletic, and he’s very live. He’s just very fast. He’s very quick with everything he does. Very, very good delivery and gets the ball there in a hurry. Again, he eludes the pressure when he has to.”
If UK can somehow find a way to contain Touchdown Teddy and upset the Louisville Cardinals, do the fans storm the field? I say no, but Matt says yes. What do you think?
An update on the status of starting wide receiver and kick returner DeMarco Robinson: Stoops said he doesn’t know. “I really don’t.”
Cody Quinn is back on the depth chart at cornerback, though, backing up Nate Willis.
Max Smith is listed ahead of Jalen Whitlow at quarterback on the depth chart, but expect them to split time under center for a second week in a row. When asked about the two-quarterback system, Stoops said, “I liked it. I liked it. I think Neal had a great feel for it, and it may be what the quarterbacks needed as well. Just eliminate a little bit of pressure from them, and they both have their strengths, like we said, and our offense has some good packages with both of them. Obviously, our offense can run the same with a good percentage of it with either quarterback, but then they each have their strengths as well.”
Welp. Whatever works for Stoops and Neal Brown works for me. I typically vote against a two-quarterback system but I guess we’re going to roll with it a little longer.
That’ll do it for tonight, folks. Before you go to bed tonight, take a second to thank the basketball gods for making John Calipari our head basketball coach. He put on a hell of show tonight and raised a lot of money doing it. Kentucky, once again, proved it’s the gold standard in college basketball.