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February 21st, 2019

SEC coaches discuss Kentucky’s rise this season

Kentucky’s improvement since December is remarkable, and has the Cats in the conversation for a No. 1 seed. ESPN’s Jeff Borzello spoke to some SEC coaches about what led to Kentucky’s rise and whether or not their success is sustainable. Spoiler: Yes.

“Instead of having three guys pissed off at the guard spot, you got two guys playing more minutes,” one SEC coach said of John Calipari’s backcourt rotation. “They’re playing with more confidence. And you don’t have to manage as many egos. I think that’s what’s going on with them now. It’s one of those situations where [Green] left and guys are playing more freely.”

“I think the biggest thing is their bigs are playing a lot harder than they had been,” an SEC assistant said. “That was the knock on PJ Washington last year and toward the beginning of this year. He changes games.”

Both true. When asked what Kentucky’s weakness is, one SEC coach said outside shooting, but even then, between PJ Washington, Keldon Johnson, Tyler Herro, Immanuel Quickley, and Jemarl Baker, the Cats have plenty of guys who can catch fire on any given night.

For more, head on over to ESPN.

[ESPN]


KSR Show Thread 2/21: Reid’s knee, Zion’s knee, and the path to a 1-seed

Good morning, friends. Wild night in college basketball, right? Tune in to KSR as the gang discusses the news about Reid Travis’ knee, what it means for Kentucky moving forward, and Zion Williamson’s knee sprain after blowing out his shoe in the Duke vs. North Carolina game.

Join in on the fun by calling (502) 571-1080 or send a text to the KSR Texting Machine at (859) 300-3264.

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Syracuse coach Jim Boeheim strikes, kills pedestrian

Elsa/Getty Images North America

Horrible news out of New York, where Syracuse head coach Jim Boeheim struck and killed a pedestrian last night.

According to Syracuse.com, a man was walking outside of his vehicle after it had crashed on Interstate 690, when Boeheim drove by and hit him. The accident happened around midnight. Earlier in the evening, the Orangemen beat Louisville 69-49. Boeheim is reportedly cooperating with investigation.

Awful, awful news.

UPDATE: Syracuse.com says alcohol was not a factor, as Boeheim’s blood-alcohol levels were 0.00 and he passed a field sobriety test, but there was freezing rain in the area, which may have led to poor driving conditions.

[Syracuse.com]


Today on KSR: Exhale

After a day of refreshing Twitter feeds around the Big Blue Nation, Kentucky fans can finally exhale.

Late last night we learned Reid Travis’ MRI revealed no significant damage in his right knee.  Diagnosed as a knee sprain, the Kentucky power forward will be sidelined for “at least two weeks.”  He should be good to go in time for postseason play.

“We are going to be very conservative with this so he may be out a couple weeks,” John Calipari said in a release. “We hope he will be ready for around the conference tournament or maybe even a little bit before, but I’m happy for Reid that we’re going to get him back.”

As UK fans experience relief, Duke fans are filling their shoes.  The difference: those shoes are exploding.

Zion Williamson went down only one minute into last night’s game at Cameron Indoor Arena.  The superstar has a pair of busted sneakers and a sprained knee.  He did not return.

Carlos Boozer sent well wishes to Zion…National Park?

Without Williamson, North Carolina used the opportunity to beat the crap out of the Blue Devils, 88-72.  It was one of a few crazy games last night around college basketball.

Down Goes LSU

The Tigers lost a dogfight to Florida in Baton Rouge.  LSU had a few chances to avoid the upset, but Tremont Waters missed a potential game-winning three at the end of regulation and a game-tying three in overtime to fall 82-77.  KeVaughn Allen led all scorers with 21 points to knock LSU out of a tie with Tennessee at the top of the SEC standings.

Teddy T

Georgia almost upset Mississippi State.  His Bulldogs had a chance to win the game in overtime, until a fan interfered.  With .5 left on the clock in regulation, a Georgia fan tossed a Teddy bear onto the floor, forcing officials to call a technical foul.  State broke a 67-67 tie with a free throw to secure the win in Athens.

‘Black in Blue’ Premieres

A documentary profiling the four African-Americans who broke the SEC football color barrier at UK will debut tonight on campus.  The tragic and triumphant story of Wilbur Hackett, Nate Northington, Greg Page and Houston Hogg is told by Academy Award-winning filmmaker Paul Wagner.

The film screening is free, beginning at 6:30 in the student center at the Worsham Cinema.  Arrive early to secure a seat in what is expected to be a sell out.

UK Hoops out for Revenge

The Kentucky women’s basketball team has a chance to avenge a 74-70 loss to South Carolina when the 16th-ranked Wildcats travel to Columbia. The action tips off on the SEC Network at 7:00 pm.

College Basketball on TV

  • 7:00: #7 Michigan at Minnesota on ESPN
  • 7:00: UCF at Cincinnati on ESPN2
  • 7:00: Vermont at UMBC on ESPNU
  • 9:00: UConn at SMU on ESPN2
  • 9:00: Oregon at USC on ESPN
  • 9:00: Cal at Arizona on FS1
  • 11:00: Oregon State at UCLA on FS1

Coming in Hot!

The best viral videos are dog videos.  This is one of the best of the best.


February 20th, 2019

REID TRAVIS UPDATE: MRI confirms knee sprain but no further damage; expected to miss two weeks

We finally have some Reid Travis news: Travis is expected to miss at least two weeks after spraining his right knee during the Missouri game Tuesday night. After being stranded in Missouri for far too long, the team finally made it back to Lexington Wednesday afternoon. Once home, an MRI confirmed the sprain. No other damage to the knee was detected.

The news was sent out on behalf of the UK Athletics department. The release says Travis is expected to miss “at least two weeks.” Losing Travis for the next few games is tough for Kentucky, but having him back before the SEC Tournament (and, presumably, the NCAA Tournament) will be huge.

“I just feel so good that it was more of a sprain than anything else because you just get worried about that stuff when you see someone go down,” John Calipari said. “We are going to be very conservative with this, so he may be out a couple weeks. We hope he will be ready for around the conference tournament or maybe even a little bit before, but I’m happy for Reid that we’re going to get him back.”

Prayers for a quick and easy recovery for Travis.


@MaggieDavisKSR


KSR’s Top 10 tweets of the Day

McDowell


The one and only Big Mick is a meaty masterpiece in its own right. Composed of two quarter-pound patties* of never-fresh, frozen, mostly beef raised close to the processing plant. Only McDowell’s has the frosted beef and processed cheese to give you a major reason for the afternoon trip to the secret bathroom only you and Debra know about on the 9th floor that is under construction.


You can be a part of McDowell’s KSR Top 10 Tweets by using hashtags like #KSR #BBN or #KSRtop10. You can also nominate tweets by mentioning them with the hashtag. If we like what we see, it could be posted the next day.

If you are interested in sponsoring KSR’s Top 10 Tweets, please contact us at Via Email.

#10 Matthew Bailey

#KSRcurse

#9 John Robic’s Hair

Now I feel bad for seeing neither….

#8 Lisa Thompson Rogers

Don’t listen to Matt. The ’80s is the BEST decade for music. Michael Jackson, Prince, Bruce Springsteen, the early stages of hip hop, late Queen, Elton John, Lionel Richie, and Madonna. This take had me fired up this morning.

#7 Bucky Small Hooves

Brilliant.

#6 Chet Lemond

And the pieces come together.

#5 HitEMWitTheHein

It’s perfect

#4 Michael McCarty

Brad will have more viewers than Ninja.

#3 Lindsikins00

I’m glad I wasn’t the only one

#2 Kentucky Glenn

UGH, could you imagine? We needed it.

#1 David Scott

The door in 2009…what a world.


Follow me on twitter and tag me in one of your tweets for a chance to make KSR’s top 10 tweets: @BrentW_KSR


Kenny Payne says Herro is special, but still has about “19 percent” left in him

Tyler Herro has become an integral part of this year’s Kentucky team. After the Bahamas, that much was obvious. But what many did not know back in August was the menace he would become on defense, the villain he would become during away games and the consistency he would offer from the free throw line. Throw in his 13 rebounds against Tennessee and a 35 percent completion percentage from deep, and you’ve got a pretty well-rounded player. And that’s what makes assistant coach Kenny Payne so happy.

“He’s a basketball player, not just a shooter,” Payne said today on the John Calipari call-in show. “He’s shown people that.”

But that’s just one of the two reasons Coach Payne said he’s proud of the freshman guard. The other reason? Herro’s ability to play well in a hostile environment.

“I like road dogs; I like kids who can go to the other arena and dominate and play their best games on the road or in a big rivalry games – that says something about you,” Payne said. “Typically, all good teams play well at home. Special teams and special players play well on the road.”

By that standard, Tyler Herro is most definitely special. A quick look at Herro’s season stat line backs it up: he’s a beast on the road. He’s averaging 12.3 points per game at Rupp, while he’s averaging 16.1 points per game on the road. On the season, Kentucky is 13-0 when Herro scores 15 points or more.

That’s impressive, and his recent performances have been on the upswing: the Tennessee game was one his best overall performances of the season and his 15 points against Missouri were the most he’s scored since his (road) game against Florida. But Kenny Payne says Herro’s not done.

“I think he’s [showing] 80 percent of how good he is. There is still a lot of growth left in that kid. Hopefully he can give us 19 percent more by the end of the season. I’ll let him off with 19.”

Tyler Herro at 99 percent by March? I’ll take it.


@MaggieDavisKSR


Hey Kentucky! and New Circle Circular preview the OSCARS!

The Oscars are this Sunday and you’re not ready for them?! Don’t worry. Hey Kentucky! has you covered. They have an Oscar’s expert from the New Circle Circular who can help, and he’s already seen TWO of the Oscar contenders.

Matt Jones is joined by Perrin Johnson for the rest of the show. They’ll discuss all of the day’s hottest topics, including an invention by a group of Western Kentucky University students, new Rick Pitino coaching rumors and what Matt would do if Perrin fell in a sink hole.

To check out the full episode, click HERE!


Joe B. Hall to John Calipari: “You were born to coach at Kentucky”

Joe B. Hall is one of the most recognizable and most beloved members of the Kentucky basketball family. After 13 seasons as the head coach plus time as a player and an assistant, Hall has been involved with the Wildcats for decades. But Tuesday night against Missouri, John Calipari recorded his 297th victory as a head coach, tying Coach Hall for second-highest wins by a head coach in program history.

After the game, Calipari said he wished he hadn’t tied the record, but Coach Hall has something to say about that.

“Go ahead and break my record. It’s there to be broken and I’m proud that it’s you,” Coach Hall said in a heartwarming video by Kentucky Athletics. “John, I would never, ever regret that you came here. You were born to coach at Kentucky.”

Hall’s message comes near the end of the video, which begins as a highlight reel of Calipari’s time so far at Kentucky. From his first press conference to 2K for UK, from photobombs by Karl Towns to forehead kisses for DeAndre Liggins and from a National Championship trophy to beating No. 1 Tennessee, the video lets the BBN relive the best of the best.

Chills. I like my coaches.


@MaggieDavisKSR


Indiana AD scolds students for profane chants

Photo: Brian Spurlock-USA TODAY Sports

Remember the brouhaha over Kentucky students chanting “overrated” at Tennessee on Saturday? Per usual, all you need for a dose of perspective is to look towards Bloomington, where Indiana students are in hot water today for chanting “F*** you, Haarms” at Purdue center Matt Haarms during last night’s game. The students chanted it throughout the game, and unlike Kentucky’s students, were not silenced by their coach. Instead, they received this email from IU Athletic Director Fred Glass this morning telling them to knock it off:

Indiana fans acting trashy? Never. The best part of this story is that Haarms got the last laugh, tipping the ball in the basket with 3.2 seconds left to give the No. 19 Boilermakers the 48-46 win.

Meanwhile, the Hoosiers have now lost 11 of their last 12 games.

What a shame.


New music festival “Railbird” coming to Keeneland this August

Courtesy Railbird Festival

A brand new music festival is headed to Lexington this August. The Railbird Festival will be held on the grounds of Keeneland and will be put on by the well-known festival producer AC Entertainment, which is also responsible for other popular festivals like Forecastle in Louisville and Bonnaroo in Tennessee. It will take place August 10-11, 2019.

Keeneland officials made the announcement Wednesday afternoon. The musical acts have not been announced yet, but festival planners say it will be a mix of rock, Americana, folk, bluegrass and more. The lineup, as well as ticket prices, are expected to be released on March 25.

Kentucky has been working on their music scene for quite some time, so it’s exciting to see another festival making its way to the Commonwealth. For the chance to win a pair of free tickets and to stay up to date on all things Railbird, check out their website here.

It’s going to be awesome (and hopefully more organized than the Fyre Festival – keep Ja Rule as far away as possible).


@MaggieDavisKSR


Calipari expects Reid Travis to miss at least a week, possibly two; awaiting MRI results

In a taped segment on his call-in show, John Calipari gave us an update on Reid Travis’ knee. The segment was taped before the team left Columbia this afternoon, so the MRI scan had not been done; however, Cal said he expects Reid to miss at least a week to ten days, possibly two weeks.

“I would say, at the least, he’s going to be out a week to ten days, maybe two weeks,” Cal said.

“He’s not going to have the scan done until we get back, so it won’t be done until 5 p.m. He was with me this morning and he’s — you just don’t know with this stuff. And I just say we’ll pray and let’s hope it’s good news and he’s out a couple weeks, but we don’t know. I feel bad for him. He’s worked so hard and having so much fun and having such an impact that fate intervenes sometimes. In this case, it was like a freak thing.”

Regardless of how long Reid is out, Calipari says he needs his big guys to step up, starting with PJ Washington. 

“Not only that, he’s giving up — I told PJ, now you’ve got to be that guy. We have no one else to go roughhouse. You have to be that guy. And that’s what’s going to make it hard for PJ but let’s just hope he has to hold the fort down for a couple of weeks and we get Reid back and go.

“Now, the other thing is, one guy’s misery is another guy’s opportunity. So now you have Nick [Richards] and EJ [Montgomery], now you have that opportunity to get extended minutes. Now, any clutter you were hearing — you should be playing more, etc. — alright, now there it is. I always tell them, you don’t listen to all this flattery or where they’re trying to blame other people. When you hear that, you have to put the phone down. You have to stop. You have to get off the internet. Anybody that’s flattering you vs. being truthful, holding you accountable, it’s poison because at some point, you have to step in the ring. You either can or you can’t. I think because we coach every player like they’re starters, I think EJ and Nick, this is their opportunity and I have great confidence in those two.”

Ten days would mean Reid is back for the Tennessee game, two weeks for Senior Day vs. Florida. Everyone cross your fingers.