Was that the calmest ejection ever?

Well, that was fun, or at least the last five minutes were.

I never thought Kentucky was going to win that game. We’ve seen the exact same kind of game three games in a row. Kentucky got a big lead, blew it,, and the last five minutes or so were filled with sweaty palms, nail biting, and shaky hands.

Good news is though, Kentucky is 2-1 in those games. Tonight being maybe the biggest win of the three.

Tonight was very different, and a big reason why I thought Kentucky was not going to win the game. John Calipari was ejected for, once again, a coaching box violation. This one was a legitimate violation though, although the call that happened before it was not a good one.

The refs started the second half by blowing seven whistles on Kentucky and only one on Arkansas. EJ Montgomery got called for an illegal screen, giving the ball to Arkansas. Then this ensued.

I love how both refs emphatically throw Calipari out of the game.

Watching it again, Calipari didn’t really say much at all, didn’t lose his cool or anything. He wanted the refs to review the previous foul for a flop and they didn’t.

He knows where the coaching box is since he’s been warned about a million times for it. This time he simply left it, they called a T, and instead of going back or an assistant pulling him back, Cal walked out further and both refs decided to save the day and eject him from the game.

This may have won Kentucky the game, so he looks like a genius for doing it. But, this has to be maybe the calmest ejection for a head coach of all time.

Kentucky/Arkansas preview and some other things

After the second half collapse on Wednesday night against South Carolina, the Kentucky Wildcats travel to Fayetteville to take on the Arkansas Razorbacks.

Today’s game is a must win, I know I am stating the obvious there, but it really is. Kentucky has four losses, drop this one, and you have five losses with three of them being terrible, with your best wins being Michigan State and Louisville. We all know the committee isn’t nice to Kentucky, so if the Cats walk into March Madness with 8-9 losses, you can expect a rough road to get to Atlanta.

Here is what needs to happen for Kentucky to win.

Get to 71 first

If ya know ya know.

South Carolina’s first lead Wednesday night just happened to be a three-pointer that also won them the race to 71.

The bigs have to play well

Rebounding, blocking shots, scoring in the post. That’s what Nick Richards, EJ Montgomery, Nate Sestina, and Keion Brooks need to do. Well, they need to do that every game, but even more so today.

The reason is Arkansas plays a ton of guards. Sometimes even five guards at once. Adrio Bailey is the only “big man” that averages over 20 minutes per game and he’s 6-foot-6.

Kentucky’s bigs should dominate today. If they do, Kentucky wins easily.

Limit their guards

This one will be difficult. Arkansa’s four guards all average over 10 points a game. The two most lethal being Mason Jones and Isaiah Joe, who both average about 18 points per game.

But, the most lethal of the two is Isaiah Joe. He has already hit 63 three-pointers this year, and while he’s only shooting 35% from behind-the-arc, he will be jacking them up from all over. If he gets hot, the Cats are in trouble.

If this game is close down-the-stretch, you better make sure he has a guy on him at all times.

In other news…..

North Carolina lost…….again

Roy Williams called his squad this years squad “the least gifted he’s ever coached” and boy was he right.

The Tar Heels dropped their second game in a row to Pitt and their fourth game in their last five.

Yikes.

College basketball isn’t great this year and the Tar Heels are even worse.

How about that Astro’s scandal?

When I first heard the news about the Houston Astro’s stealing signs in the 2017 World Series I kind of laughed and didn’t give it much thought. Well, the whole thing really has sparked in the past week and really is crazy.

I went down a worm hole myself today and there is plenty of evidence to say that they did.

Here’s a video in case you’re interested:

South Carolina won today

After the Gamecocks lost their minds, scoring 56 points in the second half Wednesday night, I wasn’t going to be surprised if they lost today by about 30.

Well, I was shocked to see that they beat Texas A&M, 81-67, and didn’t really play that bad. In fact, they scored 81 points again.

A&M is terrible, by the way.

Alright, enough of that.

I’m an LSU fan now

Go Cats.

Morning After: Cats lose to Cocks on a Buzzer-Beater

Last night was brutal all the way around. The game started at 6:30, maybe the worst time other than 11, Kentucky blew a huge lead, the refs were awful, and then Kentucky lost on a banked-in three at the buzzer.

Because of course that’s the way the game ends.

This loss was absolutely terrible. If South Carolina lost, they would’ve dropped to 0-3 in the SEC and 8-8 overall. If Kentucky won tonight, they improve to 4-0 in conference and 13-3 overall, they have a ton of momentum, and jump a few spots in the rankings.

But no. They go to Columbia and put on a sh** show and lose in a terrible way.

Enough yapping, let’s look at what went wrong.

Kentucky’s defense allowed 56 points in the second half

HOW?

South Carolina is absolutely terrible. Hell, they lost to Stetson three games ago and they dropped 56 points in one half on a top ten team?

The first half went fine, in fact, I thought Carolina was lucky to be down only eight. They’re shooting 43% from the field and only 27% from three.

Haven’t we seen this a lot this year?. Kentucky got up big early in the second half and then blew the lead and stalled.

The Gamecocks scored 60 points only once in the last three games, then drop 56 in one half against Kentucky and 81 for the game.

Kentucky really only has four guys

Those guys are Nick Richards, Ashton Hagans, Tyrese Maxey, and Immanuel Quickley.

Those guys combined for 61 points. Yeah, that’s pretty good, but when the rest of the team combines for 17 points on 6-23 shooting, you aren’t going to beat many teams.

Combine that with UK’s defensive effort (we’ll get to that) you aren’t going to beat many teams and aren’t going anywhere in the tournament.

Rebounding

Simply terrible.

South Carolina out-rebounded Kentucky 43-41, which cannot happen. That is simply just effort.

Nick Richards and Keion Brooks led the way with seven rebounds apiece. Immauel Quickley had six, EJ Montgomery had five, and Ashton Hagans and Nate Sestina had four apiece.

South Carolina had ten more offensive rebounds than Kentucky (20-10).

Immanuel Quickley

If it wasn’t for this man, Kentucky would’ve been crushed.

Clutch free throws down the stretch, a couple big three’s, and the tying bucket.

Quickley had 20 points and six rebounds.

He’s averaging 19 points and has hit 16 three-pointers in the last five games.

I also think he was crying after the loss. After all he did they bank in a three right in his face to win.

Thanks man.

Refs

John Calipari hasn’t had a lot of success with officials in Columbia. He’s been ejected twice down there and there have been plenty of terrible calls.

Last night was no different.

Early in the game, Pat Adams stopped the game to basically tell Cal to shut up. He also gave Cal a couple coaching box warnings. Which by the way is the dumbest rule in college sports and it’s funny how Cal gets warned multiple times every game.

Excuse me for a second. College refs this year have been terrible. They piss me off more than anything. Each year it gets worse and they have no consequences. I hate the three blind mice. They suck. They’re Terrible. Yeah, I could say a whole lot worse.

There were 56 fouls called. Read that and let it sink in. That’s awful. In what world do you sit there as someone associated with the league or the NCAA and accept that?

What now?

Kentucky is now 12-4 overall and 3-1 in SEC play. The Cats have a lot to work on and it showed. Maybe work on stepping on their throat and blowing them out when up big?

This happens every year and this year is no different. Kentucky will have a couple very frustrating SEC games that will leave us going insane. But, it’s not the end of the world. This team will be fine when it matters.

The Cats play Arkansas on Saturday.

That’s it. Thanks.

Kentucky Moves Back into the Top 10 in AP Poll

After dropping two games in a row in Las Vegas, the Cats rattled off four straight wins and climbed back into the top 10 in the AP Poll.

Kentucky jumped four spots, from No. 14 to No. 10.

The most notable drops are Michigan State, going from No. 8 to No. 15 after getting blown out by Purdue and Ohio State dropped from No. 11 to No. 21 after losing their fourth straight game to Indiana.

Take a look at the rest of the rankings:

Rhyne Howard continues dominance, goes for career high 43 in 81-71 win over Alabama

Saying Rhyne Howard is really good is an understatement.

After dropping 37 against the Tennessee Volunteers on Sunday, the star sophomore messed around and dropped 43 points, including seven three’s. She also grabbed six boards and five steals.

Howard has now gone for 26, 29, 28, 37, and 43 in her last six games. All for a grand total of 163 points.

Her outburst tonight tied the school record for most points in a game. I will be shocked if that record holds.

The game didn’t start the way the Cats wanted it to though. They were down 15-9 after one quarter, then outscored the Tide 28-9 in the second quarter.

Here are highlights of the game:

I think it’s safe to say that Howard will go down as one of (if not the) the greatest players in program history. After her stellar freshman year, she is having another historic season. Crazy thing is, she’s only a sophomore. She will suit up in a Kentucky uniform again next year.

Unreal.

The UK women are back in action this Sunday as they travel to Gainesville to take on the Florida Gators. Tipoff is scheduled for noon on ESPNU.

How good is Rhyne Howard? The answer is Really Good

If the one-and-done were a thing in women’s basketball, Rhyne Howard would be in the WNBA by now.

The five-star recruit out of Cleveland, Tennessee has made a name for herself at Kentucky. Howard was unanimous national freshman of the year last year, along with leading the team in major statistics, and racking up every award any freshman women’s basketball player could want.

While Howard was having an historic freshman year, the Cats finished 25-8 and got bounced in the second round of the NCAA Tournament.

You’d think it couldn’t get much better than last year for Howard, but it has.

The star sophomore is averaging 21.5 PPG which is second in the SEC to Chennedy Carter of Texas A&M and sixth in the nation. She’s third in the SEC in three-point percentage (38.6%) and ninth in the nation. She’s third in the SEC in free-throw percentage, seventh in steals, and second in field-goal percentage.

In Howard’s latest outing, a 80-76 win against #22 Tennessee, she scored a career high 37 points, with seven three’s, nine rebounds, five assists, three steals, and two blocks.

Howard has led the team in scoring in 11 of the 14 games the Cats have played, while scoring below 20 points only twice. She has scored 120 points in her last four games and has scored 282 points this season.

The Cats are 12-2 after a big win against the Lady Vols on Sunday. Their next game is this Thursday against Alabama.

Safe to say that Rhyne Howard is Kentucky’s best player and one of the best the program has ever had. This could be another historic season for Howard and a very historic season for the Wildcats.

Howard will face Chennedy Carter and Texas A&M next Thursday at Memorial Coliseum..

Five Predictions for the next Decade

We had a pretty good ending to the decade for University of Kentucky athletics. The basketball Cats beat No. 3 Louisville in an OT thriller and the football Cats pulled out a last second win against Virginia Tech in the Belk Bowl with Lynn Bowden throwing the winning touchdown pass.

This past decade treated Kentucky fans pretty good too. A national title and a great basketball run, Kentucky baseball made the Super Regionals, Mark Stoops brought Kentucky football back from the dead with four straight winning seasons, including two bowl wins and a 10-3 season.

Whether you want to admit it or not, it was a great ten years for Kentucky Athletics. Yeah we could’ve won a few more games here and there, some more important than others, but it was a great decade.

With another ten years on the horizon for Kentucky sports, here are five predictions for this next decade.

Alcohol will be sold at all games

A very controversial decision that was made this past year with no alcohol sales at Kentucky sporting events will come to an end.

Even though alcohol is allowed in the suites where the rich are, alcohol will be sold to fans with a stadium seat.

Many other programs have already allowed alcohol sales, raising revenue substantially. There was already a lot of backlash after this past decision, so I do not see it lasting long.

Kentucky football will make the SEC Championship game

I didn’t think Kentucky football would have the success that they have had, so here we go.

Mark Stoops has done a tremendous job with bringing Kentucky football back from the dead and making them a legit contender in the east.

After they hosted Georgia last year with a trip to Atlanta on the line, I can’t help but think it will happen again and Kentucky will win.

It could come as soon as next year with Kentucky’s roster loaded with talent and the Bulldogs coming to Lexington for another matchup with the Cats.

Mark Stoops will not leave Kentucky

As I said above, Stoops has already had a ton of success with Kentucky. After a terrible start to his career, Stoops is now 44-44 in his career at Kentucky with a 10-3 season and a major bowl win backed up by an 8-5 season with a WR at QB and a bowl win.

If the Cats do accomplish Stoops’ ultimate goal and make the SEC Championship game, many schools will come calling.

I think there will be a lot of drama surrounding Stoops and other jobs, but at the end of the day, Mark Stoops will not leave Kentucky.

Kentucky basketball will get No. 9 and No. 10

Kentucky basketball and John Calipari have not won a title since 2012 and while a lot of people think he’s underachieving, which is complete nonsense, Kentucky has been knocking on the door for many years now.

Kentucky will get No. 9 and No. 10 this decade. With the one and done ending, I would not be surprised if the Cats won back-to-back titles.

Now, if John Calipari spends 15 years at Kentucky and wins only one national title, then we can talk about whether he underachieved here.

John Calipari will retire

Since John Calipari has been at Kentucky, there have been many rumors about him leaving. The rumors started right after Kentucky won the title in 2012 and have been swirling ever since.

Who will follow him? I have no clue. I just know that we need to cherish these next few years with Calipari.

If the above does happen, I think Cal will retire right after.

Kentucky defeats Louisville for 11th time in Calipari era, 78-70

Before I begin with stuff about the game, I want to sincerely apologize to my dad, dogs, neighbors, and my throat for my actions during this game. I terrorized my dogs, woke my dad up many times, probably pushed my neighbors to the verge of calling 911, and my throat hurts really bad right now. But it was all worth it, because…….

Kentucky beat the dirty Cards. 78-70.

I was really nervous going into today’s game and probably the most nervous I have been for a UK/UL regular season game.

It was a lot more stressful than I wanted it to be. I have been watching Kentucky basketball for a little over a decade now and have been through some very, very, very stressful games. But, for some reason, experience as a fan doesn’t help. At all.

Anyways, let’s talk a little about the game.

It’s a W

After dropping two straight games in Vegas and that Evansville loss still looming, today’s game was really important. Not only was it the Louisville game, but if Kentucky lost, they drop to 8-4, and really need to pick it up in SEC play to comfortably make the tournament.

I hope this will be a turning point in the season. Huge win that was much needed.

EJ Montgomery

Hate to bring something negative in. But my goodness, EJ Montgomery was terrible today.

Four points, five rebounds, and four fouls.

That from a kid we thought would make a huge leap and become one of, if not Kentucky’s best player this season?

Disappointing.

Nick Richards

Okay, back to the good stuff.

Lottery Pick Nick Richards Abdul-Jabbar was a huge part of Kentucky’s win tonight. And the L’s down at the end was pretty awesome too.

Richards had 13 points, 10 rebounds, hit a couple of huge free-throws, and played most of the second half with four fouls.

I never thought Nick Richards would be a big men that could produce for Kentucky, especially after last season. He has definitely proved me wrong.

Immanuel Quickley

After going 4-21 from the field and 1-9 from three in Vegas, Immanuel Quickley was the Immanuel Quickley we all want him to be.

Quickley had 18 points, three rebounds, and two huge three’s.

For people who say these kids don’t care and only care about the NBA, he proved you wrong tonight. Did you see him making multiple efforts to calm himself down at free-throw line at the end of the game? Hell, I was shaking on my couch. Not only that, but he swooshed every free-throw at the end.

Incredible.

Tyrese Maxey

Saved the best for last.

Kentucky was not going to win today’s game without a big performance from one of their guards. They got a huge performance from someone who should be this teams best player.

Maxey had 27 points, seven rebounds, and went 4-5 from three. He can definitely shoot the ball, but has struggled all season and tonight showed everyone what he’s capable of.

What now?

It’s almost January and this team is 9-3. SEC play starts in a week and Kentucky has a lot of momentum.

Now, let’s go win the Belk Bowl.

Looking Back At the UK/UofL Rivalry this Decade

It’s the night before the 53rd edition of the Battle of the Bluegrass, between Kentucky and Louisville.

The Cats and the Cards are set to tip-off at 3:45 p.m. EST on CBS.

I’m not old enough to remember the rivalry before Calipari, but I think it’s safe to say that the rivalry has never been more exciting. Ever since I found out Santa wasn’t real, the night I lose the most sleep is the eve of this basketball game.

I hate Louisville with a passion and most Kentucky fans do, and if you don’t, you aren’t a real Kentucky fan. I cannot stand Louisville fans either. They’re terrifying in person and even more so online. Is there a worse fanbase? Well, Tennessee fans are pretty bad.

Calipari literally owns Louisville, like they are his fourth child. He’s 10-2 against them.

I could go on for days, so instead, let’s look at the best games from this decade of the rivalry.

#5: 2010

The first game between John Calipari and Rick Pitino who literally cannot stand each other.

I don’t remember this game well, but I’ve seen highlights, and I think it would’ve been pretty fitting if both sides just started fighting each other.

You had Eric Bledsoe and Reginald Delk jawing at each other seconds into the game where Cal eventually intervened telling Delk, “You’re messing with the wrong guy, he’ll kick your ass.”

You also had DeMarcus Cousins elbow Jared Swopshire in the face going after a loose ball. Maybe one of the wildest starts to a college basketball game?

Pretty clean. How did Cousins not get thrown out?

#4: 2012 Final Four

I was at this game. Don’t remember it too well, but I was there.

My dad has never been so nervous about a sporting event in his life.

Kentucky dominated Louisville the whole game, then the Cards came back to make it interesting, but two dunks by Michael Kidd-Gilchrist in the final seconds sealed the game for the Cats.

It all ended with Anthony Davis throwing the ball into the air and yelling, “this is my state! this is my state!.”

#3: Pitino’s last game at Rupp

Kentucky and Louisville were pretty equal for a change.

Tyler Ulis went off with Tom Leach’s “the card killer strikes again” call. He had 21 points and eight assists.

Not only was it Rick Pitino’s last game at Rupp Arena, he also left with some class. Pitino let us UK fans know that we’re #1.

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#2: Josh Harrelson’s breakout game

I don’t remember this game at all. You could tell me that they didn’t play that year and I would believe you.

All I know is that Kentucky wasn’t supposed to win this game and then Jorts went off.

Brandon Knight had 25 points and Harrelson had 23 points, 14 rebounds, and oh wow he hit a three-pointer.

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#1: Aaron Harrison sends the Cards home

Now I remember this game like it was yesterday.

Kentucky was not supposed to win this game, in fact, they weren’t even supposed to be here, but the Cats upset the undefeated Shockers of Wichita State in the second round, so they made it to Indianapolis.

The Cards were the better team and played like it. Kentucky led the game 2-0 early and didn’t hold the lead again until it was 67-66 with 1:22 left.

The best part? A guy named Aaron Harrison.

Go Cats.

James Wiseman withdraws from Memphis

Some big news in the world of college basketball.

Former top-recruit and presumed No. 1 overall pick, James Wiseman, announced just moments ago on his Instagram account that he will be withdrawing from the University of Memphis and will begin preparing for the 2020 NBA Draft.

Wiseman was once considered a Kentucky lock, then Memphis hired his former AAU coach, Penny Hardaway.

But, the NCAA did some investigating and found Hardaway illegally covered Wiseman’s family’s move to Memphis. The university fought the NCAA but eventually he was ruled out for 12 games.

Wiseman was set to return to the Tigers on January 12.

This is a big hit to college basketball.