John Calipari’s “Baby Son” is Graduating This Weekend

There are not many more things more special than a father-son relationship, and during his time at Kentucky John Calipari has not been shy about showing his love for son Brad Calipari, from kissing him on the cheek to encouraging and pushing him to be a better basketball player.

Brad will graduate this weekend in just three years, an impressive feat and John Calipari wrote a letter to discuss just how proud he is of Brad’s accomplishments.

Here are some quotes from Cal’s emotional letter.


Ellen and I could not be more proud of the young man Brad has grown to be. He knows what it means to be committed and driven toward a goal. He’s humble when he wins and he learns from failure as much as he does from winning.

For me as a father, to be able to be with my son the last three years, to have him in every practice, to watch him play in games, to travel with him across the country, has been a true blessing. 

As a father, if I had a choice, there’s no other young man I’d want to be my son other than Brad. With graduation on the horizon, he has his entire future ahead of him. We don’t know the turns or how fate will intervene. We don’t know how Brad’s story will end. I do know though that he prepared to write his own story and be his own man. Most people know Brad as John Calipari’s son. I can’t wait until the day when the world knows me as John, Brad Calipari’s father.
Congratulations, Brad. We’re all so proud of you.

As a part of the Big Blue Nation, we often see Cal yelling and ranting on the sidelines as he pushes his players, but it’s refreshing to see the emotional and fatherly side of Coach Cal.

While nothing has been reported or said, Brad still has two seasons of eligibility left and could transfer to another school and play next season. However, Brad has discussed his interest in coaching and there are not many many coaches better to learn from than his father.

No matter what Brad chooses, Brad has brought some style to the sidelines and brought out a rarely seen side of Coach Cal, Good Luck Brad!

The rest of the Letter can be read on CoachCal.com.

UK Football Commit Has Some Serious Bounce

Andru Phillips, a three-star cornerback in the 2020 class, committed to Kentucky on Monday over Tennessee, Louisville, and others. It looks like the Wildcats are getting one heck of an athlete according to this video.

Andru grew up in Kentucky before moving to South Carolina and comes from a football family. Andru’s father, Carlos Phillips, played linebacker at Kentucky in the late 1980s, and his brother, CJ Phillips, was a star lineman for Morehead State.

I’m not sure there are too many basketball players that could jump over cars, but Andru Phillips can and I hope to see his athleticism on the field next season!

Kentucky Wildcats Receive Citrus Bowl Rings

The Kentucky Wildcats are coming off their best football season since 1977, and they capped it off with a 27-24 Citrus Bowl victory over Penn State to finish the season at 10-3.

In addition to the $400 Best Buy gift card, Fossil watch, and Ogio backpack each player received for participating in the Citrus Bowl, the Wildcats looked to have received some nice jewelry for their victory.

I will say the Jostens Citrus Bowl ring is much more beautiful than my Jostens senior class ring.

With Mark Stoops and company’s recent success, there will be plenty of more hardware to come in the future. Go Cats!

UK Football gets Four-Star Commitment and UK Basketball Makes Final Four for Johnny Juzang

All of Big Blue Nation should be flexing and doing the John Wall dance right now.

Kentucky football won’t have a lot of roster turnover following the 2019 season, meaning there will be less scholarships for recruits and Coach Stoops and company will have to be very selective about who they go after.

That plan is going well as UK football picked up a commit from Kentucky native and four-star offensive lineman, John Young.

Young, a 6-foot-6, 295-pound tackle, ranks as the No. 214 overall prospect and No. 24 offensive tackle in the nation according to Rivals and chose Kentucky over other finalists Georgia, Ohio State, Michigan, Purdue, and Louisville.

Thus far, Kentucky has only two commits for next season, but both are four-star recruits and rank as top five recruits in their respective states.

Young is a big get for the UK football program that could play a major role in bringing in more recruits for next season.

Not even 10 minutes later, Kentucky basketball received some big recruiting news regarding five-star Johnny Juzang who announced on Wednesday that he would be reclassifying to the 2019 class.

Before Kentucky’s involvement, Villanova was the heavy favorite to land Juzang and with them out of the picture, Kentucky seems to be the favorite by far.

Juzang is scheduled to visit Lexington on Monday and if we have learned anything from past commitments, don’t be surprised if Juzang commits to Kentucky during his visit.

Scouting Report: Just like Tyler Herro, Juzang is a natural born “bucket”. Juzang can score inside and out and everywhere in between using quick release jumpers, floaters, and scoop shots to score in the lane. Juzang also plays well off the ball and excels in catch and shoot situations. Juzang does lack athleticism and handling.

NBA Comparison: Dillon Brooks

Kentucky 2019 NFL Draft Recap

The Kentucky football program capped off their first 10 win season since 1977 with a very successful NFL Draft.

In the 2019 NFL Draft, Kentucky was one of just four schools to have a player selected in each of the first four rounds and had five players drafted in total, the highest total since 1979 when eight players went in 12 rounds.

Take a closer look at the most recent Wildcat draftees.

Draft Picks

Josh Allen LB: Jacksonville Jaguars; 1st round, 7th overall pick
Lonnie Johnson CB: Houston Texans; 2nd round, 54th overall pick
Mike Edwards S: Tampa Bay Buccaneers; 3rd round, 99th overall pick
Benny Snell RB: Pittsburgh Steelers; 4th round, 122nd overall pick
George Asafo-Adjei OT: New York Giants; 7th round, 232nd overall pick,

There were several more Wildcats that didn’t hear their name called, but that doesn’t mean they fell short of their NFL dreams. So far, six players have been signed by NFL teams and there is one notable name yet to be signed, linebacker Jordan Jones.

There is a case to be made that is is better to undrafted than to be selected in the 6th or 7th round, because as an undrafted free agent you have the ability to choose the team that gives you the best shot to make the final roster.

Here are the undrafted Wildcats who have signed as free agents so far.

Free Agent Signings

Chris Westry CB: Dallas Cowboys
Dorian Baker WR: Cleveland Browns
CJ Conrad TE: New York Giants
Bunchy Stallings OL: Jacksonville Jaguars
Derrick Baity CB: Houston Texans
Darius West S: Kansas City Chiefs

After this year’s NFL Draft Mark Stoops, Vince Marrow, and the rest of the UK coaching staff have plenty of recruiting ammo to use to bring in future players to Lexington and make more NFL dreams come true.

2020 Five-Star Target Jalen Johnson calls Kentucky His “Dream School”

One of the top players in the 2020 class, Jalen Johnson, is in Atlanta this weekend for the Nike EYBL where he is joined by Coach John Calipari and the rest of the UK coaching staff.

As the No. 3 overall recruit in the 2020 class, Johnson is one of Kentucky’s highest priority targets for next year’s class. As Johnson hopes to commit before his senior season, he talked about Kentucky as his “dream school”.

Johnson also went on to discuss his “love” for Kentucky and the NBA factory Coach Cal has created in Lexington.

“I just love (Kentucky), I don’t really know why. They were just my dream school, them and Florida. I just loved watching those two schools play and seeing the success they had.”

“Just seeing how successful they are in the NBA, I think that’s a huge factor for recruits. … Calipari’s player development, it’s like no other. Seeing how he’s turned players into future Hall of Famers, it’s crazy.”

According to the 24/7 Sports Crystal Ball predictions, Duke has the best chances to land Johnson at 71% followed by Wisconsin at 29%.

At 6-foot-8 and 215 pounds, Johnson has great size and is one of the most talented players in next year’s class. With Kentucky being his “dream school”, you have to think there is a great chance of Johnson becoming a Wildcat.

Scouting Report: Standing at 6-8 with a 6-11 wingspan, Johnson has great overall speed and athleticism which allows him to run the floor and play above the rim with ease. Even with his size and length, Johnson has legit point guard skills and excels at initiating fast breaks. Johnson is a great two way player with great shooting form. Needs to improve his ball handling and develop a more consistent outside shot.

Comparison: Paul George/Stronger Shaun Livingston

Josh Allen has the Ultimate Stamp of Approval from Jacksonville Teammate

How can you not like Josh Allen?

After dominating not just the SEC, but the entire country and making a clean sweep of every major college football defensive award in existence, Josh Allen was primed to be a top-five pick in this year’s NFL Draft.

While Allen did fall to pick No. 7, a couple of spots shy of where he was projected, he was able to avoid some “trainwreck” teams and land on a decent Jacksonville Jaguar team just two seasons removed from an AFC championship game appearance.

After being drafted, fellow Jaguar teammate and star cornerback, Jalen Ramsey, tweeted out a direct message he sent to Allen back on April 13th saying, “ain’t nobody betta in this draft”.

This is high praise from Ramsey, who told GQ last year that Pro Bowl quarterbacks Ben Roethlisberger and Andrew Luck “suck” and “aren’t that good”.

Allen will join Ramsey in the Jaguar defensive unit and with Ramsey’s stamp of approval, Allen can make the six teams that passed up on him regret it with a Defensive Rookie of the Year level season.

Time to invest in a Josh Allen jersey!

NFL Draft Day, Eleven Wildcats Could Be Drafted

It is NFL Draft Day! For the first time ever the NFL Draft is being hosted in a city not too far away; Nashville, Tennessee. As for the Kentucky football program, even more history could be made following a historic 10-win season.

After not having one player drafted in the previous two drafts, the 2019 NFL Draft could be a historically great one for the Kentucky football program.

There are eleven Wildcats that could have their name called over the course of the weekend and could shatter any Kentucky football draft records.

Kentucky hasn’t had more than four players drafted in one year since 1979, when eight players went in 12 rounds. In 1951, nine players were drafted, and that took an astounding 28 rounds.

Let’s take a closer look at the most recent draft projections.

*Draft projections based on NFL.com

Josh Allen DE/LB: 1st Round, Top 5 pick
Lonnie Johnson CB: 2nd Round
Mike Edwards S: 3rd-4th Round
Benny Snell RB: 5th-6th Round
Chris Westry CB: 6th-7th Round
Darius West S: 7th Round-Priority Free Agent
Bunchy Stallings G: Priority Free Agent
C.J. Conrad TE: Priority Free Agent
Derrick Baity CB: Priority Free Agent
Jordan Jones LB: Priority Free Agent
Dorian Baker WR: Priority Free Agent

While the NFL.com analysts aren’t as high on many of these Wildcats as others, these players brought Kentucky football to a level it hasn’t seen for 40+ years. If given a fair shot, you could see the majority of this list on NFL rosters next season.

Until the draft comes on at 8 pm ET, enjoy this billboard of Josh Allen 🐐

2020 Four Star Football Recruit Praises Kentucky and Disses Alabama

Four-star wide receiver Kalil Branham has been a hot name in Lexington since decommitting from Michigan following his visit to Lexington for the Blue-White game.

Following the visit, there were several picks made for the Cats to land Brahman, and with his recent tweet from Tuesday those chances seem to be getting bigger.

I doubt Nick Saban appreciates Branham’s tweet, but it does support the “family” atmosphere around the UK football program that current and former players have talked about.

Branham, a 6-foot-1 wide receiver from Columbus, Ohio ranks as the No. 339 player overall and the 6th best player from Ohio in the 2020 class.

Football recruiting is as unpredictable as the weather, but signs are looking good for the Cats to land their first four-star wide receiver since Lynn Bowden.

In case you needed to know, Branham is also a track star and he is “fast, fast”.

Johhny “Bucket” Juzang could Reclassify to 2019 Class, Announcement Tomorrow

With five players definitely leaving (Reid Travis, PJ Washington, Keldon Johnson, Tyler Herro, and Jemarl Baker) and potentially two more (Nick Richards and EJ Montgomery), there is a lot of unpredictability as we look ahead to next year’s Kentucky team.

Returnees
G Ashton Hagans
G Immanuel Quickley
G Brad Calipari
G/F Zan Payne
C Nick Richards
C EJ Montgomery

Newcomers
G Tyrese Maxey
G/F Khalil Whitney
G/F Dontaie Allen
F Keion Brooks
F Nate Sestina

John Calipari is exploring all possibilities to fill next year’s roster and one of the hottest names in Kentucky basketball recruiting right now is 2020 five-star wing, Johnny Juzang.

This past Friday, the day Jemarl Baker announced he would transfer from UK, John Calipari and Joel Justus visited Juzang in California and offered him a scholarship.

At 6-foot-6 and 200 pounds, Juzang has good size at the wing and is widely considered a top-25 recruit and an elite scorer in the 2020 class.

As a junior, Juzang averaged 22.8 points, 9.5 rebounds, and 2.8 assists on 43% FG and 35% from three.

Recruiting guru, Evan Daniels of 24/7 Sports, is now reporting that Juzang is “seriously” considering reclassification to the 2019 class and will take a visit to Lexington on April 29th.

If Juzang were to reclassify he would need to obtain credits away from his current school Harvard-Westlake, as they do not have an early graduation program.

As more news comes out the Cats seem to be picking up more momentum, which is certainly promising as Juzang tweeted that he’s got a “big announcement” coming tomorrow night.

Virginia, USC, and Kansas are among other schools going after Juzang but Kentucky’s recent momentum has most believing the Wildcats are the favorite and his offense will be certainly welcomed in Lexington.

Scouting Report: Just like Tyler Herro, Juzang is a natural born “bucket”. Juzang can score inside and out and everywhere in between using quick release jumpers, floaters, and scoop shots to score in the lane. Juzang also plays well off the ball and excels in catch and shoot situations. Juzang does lack athleticism and handling.

NBA Comparison: Dillon Brooks

Here is a video from October, with Juzang talking about Kentucky’s “winning” and “wanting to be a pro”.