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Men's Basketball

National Media Believes in Kentucky Following Champions Classic



Kentucky Wildcats guard Antonio Reeves (12) reacts after scoring against the Kansas Jayhawks.
© David Banks-USA TODAY Sports

In years past, a Kentucky loss would practically mean the end of the world for it. “Calipari sucks”, “this team is overrated”, you name it. In fairness, the program has deserved some criticism as of late, and the national media has been quick to harp on the ‘Cats. However, after coming just short to No. 1 Kansas on Tuesday night, there were only encouraging things to say about UK. Here are just a few examples of the national praise that Kentucky is receiving.

ESPN Commentator Dick Vitale

Of course, who else would there be to be high on Kentucky basketball? Dickie V was very excited about the outlook of Kentucky basketball, especially when they get a seven footer or two back on the roster. Actually, he may have been concerned for the rest of college basketball. You can decide that for yourself.

At the end of his post, Vitale says “All I can say for Cats opponents when they get their 3 bigs simply will = OUCH!” His grammar wasn’t perfect there, but you get the point. This Kentucky team can be special when they get their big men back.


The Field of 68 College Basketball Podcast

The Field of 68 podcast has been questioned for their takes over the years, especially for their takes regarding Kentucky. The podcast is hosted by FOX broadcaster and writer John Fanta. He hosts the show alongside former UNC star Tyler Hansbrough and former college basketball coach Chris Mack. Yes, “0-and-forever” Chris Mack.

Hansbrough said he thinks Kentucky is “a top 50 team”. This sounds like a shot at UK, but Hansbrough mentions that Kentucky “will improve” and can “compete with anybody”. Fanta, who has been critical of Kentucky in the past, was shocked at Hansbrough’s take. Mack said he “believes in this Kentucky team”. He also mentioned that they are “easily a top 20 team” who will get better as the team gets healthy.

DraftKings Sportsbook & Casino

While DraftKings is not a member of the national media, they are betting company that makes their odds based on what they think teams can do. With money (and potentially a lot of it) on the line, it’s safe to say that these DraftKings rankings are no joke.

Following Kentucky’s loss to Kansas, DraftKings actually made Kentucky co-favorites to win it all this year. Yes, you read that right. After Kentucky lost, they became the favorites (alongside Kansas) to win the national championship. Here are the best odds on DraftKings:

  • Kentucky: +1000
  • Kansas: +1000
  • Purdue: +1100
  • Duke: +1300
  • Arizona: +1600
  • UConn: +1600
  • Houston: +2000
  • Tennessee: +2000

Finally, Kentucky is receiving the national praise that many anticipated they would. Who would have known that Kentucky would be viewed so strongly after losing for the fourth consecutive time during the Champions Classic? Well, I guess that’s what happens when you nearly dethrone the nation’s top team with several key players not in action.

BB Recruiting

Chin Coleman Talks About Kentucky’s 2024 Recruiting Class



Kentucky Wildcats assistant coach Chin Coleman goes into detail about the 2024 recruiting class.
© Jordan Prather-USA TODAY Sports

Kentucky basketball assistant coach Chin Coleman recently spoke with the media. While talking about the game, Coleman was asked about Kentucky’s current signees in the 2024 class, which now sits No. 2 overall, all of whom signed this in the early signing period.

Somto Cyril

“A freak of nature, Coleman says. He says he has to get better with his skill-set, but that he does things that no one else in the world can do: “He’s a freak of nature. Obviously, he’s gotta get better with his skill set, right, but he does things that no one in the world could do, not even guys in the NBA could do some of the stuff that he does in terms of pure shot-blocker, pure vertical spacer. He gets way over the rim, and that gives you something that a lot of teams don’t have.”

Boogie Fland

With Boogie Fland, he says he’s the best point guard in the country, and that he is expecting to give the keys to him when he arrives: “You talk about Boogie, who’s the best point guard in the country,” Coleman said. “We got the best, in Boogie, and we’re expecting Boogie to come in here and have the keys to the Lamborghini and drive it the right way.”


Jayden Quaintance

Talking about Jayden Quaintance, Coleman calls him a “prodigy”: “You have a prodigy, who is probably–arguably one of the best players in the country regardless of class. ’24, ’25, it doesn’t matter,” Coleman said. “He too has some force and some physicality, but he’s very, very, very, skilled. He’s 6-10 245-250, and he plays like a guard,” Coleman said. “The crazy thing about it is, two years, think about that. Jayden Quaintance for two years, that’s unheard of.”

Travis Perry

Coleman also dove in on Travis Perry, saying, “Hometown kid. His parents obviously share some relationships with the university. All he knows is blue. He wanted to go here no matter how many people recruited him. This is where he wanted to be.”

On the recruiting class as a whole, he calls it a “unique” class that is different in its own way. Kentucky is on a hot streak in the 2024 class and beyond, and doesn’t look to be slowing down anytime soon.

Check out Coleman’s answer in the video below!


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BB Recruiting

Kentucky Targets Play In Made Hoops Derek Smith Invitational



Kentucky basketball recruiting prospect AJ Dybantsa going up for a dunk,
NBC Boston

The city of Louisville had some of the nation’s top high school prospects in town this weekend at Saint Xavier High School for the Made Hoops Derek Smith Invitational. A few of the nation’s top high school teams were there as well, and they featured some very notable names.

Headlined by 2024 Kentucky signee Jayden Quaintance, who did not play in the event, there were a few major Kentucky targets in Louisville this weekend. The top player of 2025, AJ Dybantsa, who is a generational talent, put up a great game against Link Academy on Saturday, which features 2026 Texas signee Tre Johnson and 2025 Top-15 prospect Jasper Johnson.

Dybantsa finished with 25 points, and his teammate, 2026 Top prospect Tyran Stokes, is another major Kentucky target. He had 12 points. Jasper Johnson ended with 10 points for Link Academy, coming up short in the loss to Prolific Prep.


Sunday featured Prolific Prep vs. St. Xavier, where Dybantsa struggled, but Tyran Stokes made up for it. Dybantsa is known as an athletic finisher, who is long and can really score. That wasn’t clicking on Sunday. Instead, it was Stokes who was playing very aggressively attacking the basket. He even threw down a few monster dunks. Stokes had a full head of steam attacking the rim all day. Kentucky’s staff was in attendance.

Dybantsa spoke after the game on Sunday to talk about Kentucky and what it means to him to be offered by Kentucky.

“It’s a blessing,” he said. “High-major school, you know, multiple NBA players, a lot of college championships.” He spoke about playing with other elite talent right now, and eventually at the next level, “I know how to blend well. I know how to get my teammates involved.”

Dybantsa also went on to about what he is looking for his role to be at the next level: “Like a point forward or just play shooting guard at my height.” He then talked about things he has to do to be his best at the next level: “Get all my ball-handling right, limit turnovers, and just making the right passes.”


Dybantsa is a generational talent, and there was a lot of talent this weekend in Louisville. A notable win from the weekend was Fredrick Douglass’ close win against St. Frances, who is a nationally known team. A lot to like about this weekend in Louisville.

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Men's Basketball

Recap And Takeaways From Kentucky’s Stunning Loss To UNC Wilmington



Kentucky Forward Justin Edwards reacts to an foul call at Rupp Arena.
© Jordan Prather-USA TODAY Sports

Kentucky looked like a totally different team on Saturday when they faced UNC Wilmington at Rupp Arena, losing to a score of 80-73.

Kentucky played a very sloppy game, putting up a season-high 14 turnovers, also as a result of very good defense from UNC Wilmington.

Let’s dive into the takeaways from the game.


Kentucky Ties A Season-High 14 Turnovers

Kentucky did not look like the team we have watched to start the season. Playing very sloppy, and making questionable passes, Kentucky ended up with 14 turnovers, which ties a season-high.

The Cats had 9 turnovers in the first half alone, cleaning them up a little bit in the second half. Kentucky’s assist-to-turnover ratio took a big hit tonight, with only dishing out 14 assists.

Kentucky Struggles From Three-Point Range

Kentucky’s offense had struggles all night, with turnovers a big part of it from making questionable passes. But, Kentucky also struggled from deep. Not putting up as much threes as usual, Kentucky only attempted 17, and hit 5 of them.

Besides Reed Sheppard, no one else could get it going from behind the arc. Sheppard was the team’s leading scorer, finishing with 25 points on 3 of 6 from deep, 9 rebounds, 6 assists, and added 2 steals.


Kentucky Looked Out Of Control

Kentucky had a lot of silly turnovers, especially in the first half, and played a very sloppy game on the offensive end, which ended up affecting the defensive side too.

There were times were Kentucky was forcing passes, which ended up in turnovers, but cleaned those up in the second half.

Overall, Kentucky looked like a much different team tonight, but will look to get their bearings after a week off, when they face Penn in Philadelphia on December 9th. No need to fret, BBN, we’ve got a good team.

Box Score

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