Kentucky Sports Radio

University of Kentucky Basketball, Football, and Recruiting news brought to you in the most ridiculous manner possible.
September 30th, 2016

UK fans having a little fun with Bear Bryant bust down in Alabama

bryant-statue

The Big Blue Mist is gradually making its way into Tuscaloosa today and a group of Kentucky fans have already had some harmless fun in Alabama’s Paul W. Bryant Museum with a minor makeover of Bryant’s bust.

bryant-statue-2

I’ve heard there was a pretty big Kentucky turnout at last night’s East Mississippi Community College game, too. The popular JUCO team from Netflix’s Last Chance U documentary defeated Mississippi Delta Junior College, EMCC’s opponent from last year’s big brawl, 73-7.


Tent City USA hit full capacity today

tc2

I’m afraid there is no more room for fans to crash the party at the Big Blue Madness ticket distribution. If you had planned to skip the camping and show up Friday afternoon to pick up a control card, you’re SOL.

UK announced earlier today that no more fans will receive control cards for tonight’s ticket release, so if you weren’t sleeping on the hard ground last night, you won’t be getting two free tickets to Madness via Tent City.

Fans can still use Ticketmaster.com to acquire tickets when they’re released tonight at 10 pm.

Shout-out to all the campers for their dedication.


The Kentucky Wild-Tide

AL.com

AL.com

The University of Kentucky and the University of Alabama have extensive historical ties. This connection is attributable to several athletic coaches and spans seven decades. Starting with Bear Bryant and finishing with John Pelphrey and Derrick Ainsley; the Wildcats and Crimson Tide have shared loyalties.

Let’s take a look:

Paul Bear Bryant: Head football coach at Kentucky and Alabama. The Bear coached the Wildcats to its first SEC and only national championship (1951). His UK teams played in the Great Lakes, Orange, and Cotton Bowls as he departed Lexington with a 60-23 record. The Bear later won 6 national championships at Alabama.

CM Newton: Former Alabama head basketball coach and University of Kentucky Athletics Director. CM led the Tide basketball team for 12 seasons (211-123). His Bama teams won SEC titles in three consecutive seasons: 1974-75-76. Newton was recommended for the Alabama head coaching job by Adolph Rupp to then Alabama Athletics Director Bear Bryant.

Kentucky Digital Library

Kentucky Digital Library

Jerry Claiborne: Played for Bear Bryant at Kentucky and was later became the University’s head football coach. Claiborne coached for the Bear at UK, Texas A&M and Alabama. Much like Bryant, his alma mater was his final coaching destination. Claiborne was the SEC Coach of the Year in 1983 and led the Cats to back-to-back Hall of Fame Bowl appearances. His last Kentucky team captured the College Football Association Academic Achievement Trophy with an astounding 90% graduation rate while posting a 6-5 record in 1989. For the fourth and final time, Claiborne reconnected with the Bear in 1999.  This time wasn’t on the sidelines, but in the College Football Hall of Fame. I loved my college football coach.

Montgomery Adviser

Montgomery Adviser

Bill Curry: Alabama and Kentucky head football coach. Curry’s Alabama teams appeared in the Sun, Hall of Fame, and Sugar Bowls. Coaching staff members that assisted Curry at both UK and Bama are:

Larry New: Linebackers, Defensive Coordinator

-John Guy: Defensive Line/Outside Linebackers, Associate Head Coach

-Rick Rhodes: Offensive Line-Coordinator

-Tommy Limbaugh: Recruiting Coordinator, TE’s

-Tommy Bowden: WR’s, Offensive Coordinator

-Walter Lewis: Former UA QB, Running Backs.

-Rick Smith: Secondary

-Jack Fligg: Administration, Special Teams

John Pelphrey: Current Alabama Associate Head Coach, Basketball. Pelphrey starred and captained one of the most beloved Kentucky Basketball teams of all time; The Unforgettables.

Derrick Ainsley: Current Alabama defensive backs coach. Ansley formerly held the same position under Mark Stoops at the University of Kentucky.

There are more coaching connections than listed above. But the conclusion remains the same: Alabama and Kentucky have history.


STAFF SHAKEUP: Justus replaces Robic; Robic named special assistant to Calipari

joel-justus

In a major Kentucky basketball staff reorganization, John Calipari announced on Friday that Joel Justus has become a full-time assistant on the UK basketball staff. Justus — who filled in for John Robic on the recruiting trail over the summer while Robic took time away for family reasons — joins Kenny Payne and Tony Barbee as Calpari’s three assistant coaches on staff.

But don’t you worry, Big Blue Nation — Coach Robic isn’t leaving. Robic will now serve as a special assistant to Calipari, which will allow him to do what he does better than anyone in the game: devote all of his energy toward scouting opponents and game-planning.

From the words of Coach Cal:

First and foremost, John Robic has been and will continue to be my closest confidant. He has been with me for 20 years as we’ve rebuilt three different programs. Robes has been with me nearly every step of the way over an incredible journey, and he will continue to be as we try to take this thing to the next level.

In his role as special assistant to the head coach, he can and will continue to help me prepare for games, which he’s done his entire career. That won’t change. He will continue to break down film with me, come up with our scouting reports and prepare me for our next opponent. He’s the best in the business at it, and I can’t think of anyone else filling that role. [CoachCal.com]

This is the best move for all parties and the entire program will benefit from it. Robic has never been a big recruiter and this allows him to stick to his coaching expertise. He’s a guy who prefers to be locked in the film room to draw up the Xs and Os for an upcoming game, not jet-setting across the country to scout and recruit. Meanwhile, Justus is the exact opposite as he has proven his worth on the recruiting trail and he’s an up-and-comer in that aspect. Promoting Justus to assistant allows him to do that (only full-time assistants can recruit) without taking away from Robic’s critical role in game preparation.

Love the move and I’m happy for Justus’ promotion, as well as Robic’s move to a spot I’m sure he prefers.

Go Cats.


Go All-Access with this feature video from the South Carolina win

sc-feature

Kentucky Wildcats TV released its all-access video from the Cats’ win over South Carolina last weekend. The six-minute feature gives a new look into that game with highlights from the field, sideline and in the locker room.

It’s definitely worth your time on this Friday afternoon:


The weed in Alabama linebacker’s car belonged to an imaginary friend, not him

Alabama linebacker Tim Williams picked up a gun charge early Thursday morning but avoided any drug-related charges, despite having a bag of marijuana in the console of his car.

According to the arrest report, the weed belonged to a friend named “Brandon Chicken” — or at least that’s what Williams and the man in the driver’s seat of Williams’ car told police. Williams and the man were simply holding the weed for “Chicken,” they said.

If that is indeed true and Chicken is indeed a real person, he must be pretty upset he was thrown under the bus by his friends. He also must be pretty upset the officers smelled burning marijuana coming from inside Williams’ Chevy Impala, which suggests his friends were smoking his stash in the Publix parking lot.

Nick Saban has yet to issue a suspension for his star linebacker for the Kentucky game, because, why would Alabama ever suspend a player over gun charges and holding pot for an imaginary friend?


Karl-Anthony Towns in new Gatorade commercial

kat-gatorade

Karl-Anthony Towns’ superstardom continues to grow in a new commercial with Gatorade as part of the “Burn It To Earn It” campaign. We’ve seen Cam Newton, Peyton Manning, Bryce Harper and other popular professional athletes in similar ads and now the former Wildcat has jumped on board.

Watch him surprise an unsuspecting Gatorade drinker and make her work for her electrolytes:


Holy s*** the Ryder Cup looks wild

There’s not a rowdier place in America today than Hazeltine National Golf Club, where the Americans hold a very early lead over the Europeans in the Friday morning foursomes. Chants of U-S-A! U-S-A! U-S-A! have been ringing out since before sunrise as the first day of the Ryder Cup brings out golf’s most patriotic fans.

Check out this early a.m. photo of the first tee from our friends at @NoLayingUp:

Tell me you wouldn’t want to be in this scene:

We’ve already got Phil hitting right-handed, too:

LESSSSGGGOOOOOOOOOOOO!


Nick Saban still hoping Damien Harris will play

We likely won’t know Damien Harris’ game status until kickoff on Saturday, but Nick Saban is still holding out hope Harris will be a go for the Crimson Tide.

On his weekly call-in show last night, Saban told his listeners, “Damien did twist his ankle a little bit, but he was able to practice this week. We’re hopeful that he’ll be able to go in the game, but we have confidence in those other three guys, as well.”

Harris is Alabama’s leading rusher and he ranks second in the conference with 8.6 yards per carry. Alabama will be fine with its stable of backs if he’s unable to go against the Cats, but this is the last game on the schedule Harris wants to miss.

With a crazy difficult four-game slate after the UK game, you gotta think Saban will keep Harris sidelined if it’s a close call. Or he may just let his starting back run wild on his home state school and runner-up in his recruitment.

We wish nothing but the best for Harris, but we wouldn’t mind seeing him sit this one out. I don’t think the state of Kentucky is ready to watch him rush for 200 yards against UK.


KSR is at Bi-Water Farm! (Friday Show Thread)

Today’s show is coming to you live from Bi-Water Farm in Georgetown, where Matt and Ryan are broadcasting and giving away prizes to fans at the show. Tune in or make the trip out to the farm for two hours of KSR.

Join in on the fun by calling (502) 571-1080.

Listen to Kentucky Sports Radio

affiliate-list


Huge weekend sale at the KSR Shop!

discounts_ksr

We have quite the sale for you going on at the KSR Shop this weekend. From now through Sunday, take up to 25% OFF your entire purchase at ShopKSR.com!

It finally feels like Fall outside and you’re going to need some warmer items to support the ‘Cats. Come check out our UK and KSR long sleeve t-shirts or perhaps a UK Comfy Terry Crew Neck sweatshirt.

Here’s how this special deal works. If you spend over $30 take 15% OFF your order with the promo code 1515. When you spend over $50, you get 20% OFF with the code 2020. Finally, if you spend over $100, you get 25% OFF (yes 25!) when you use the promo code 2525. But, these great deals don’t stop there. They all come with FREE SHIPPING when you enter that promo code on ShopKSR.com!

You have three days to take advantage of this great deal, so be sure to tell all your family and friends in the Big Blue Nation. However, don’t wait too long as this special deal expires Sunday at midnight.

 

Huge weekend sale at the KSR Shop!


Rupp Arena’s 40th Birthday Celebration’s Friday Morning Wakeup

rupp-40

Rupp Arena turns 40 next month and several local businesses will celebrate by offering specialty menu items, created in honor of college basketball’s best venue.

The birthday party is scheduled for Monday, October 17 and a percentage of the proceeds of the sale of these items will go to United Way of the Bluegrass, with Rupp Arena matching the total donation amount. So mark your calendar and plan to stop by one of these businesses to celebrate 40 years of Rupp!

West Sixth Brewing
“Rupptoberfest” (Maple-aged Oktoberfest Beer with Vanilla Notes). The first 50 people after 5pm receive a free special edition pint glass.

North Lime Coffee & Donuts – Limestone
“Rupp Sprinkle” (White-frosted Cake Donut with Blue & White Sprinkles) *Limestone Location Only!

Vinaigrette Salad Kitchen
“Blueberry Maple Lemonade”

Daily Offerings Coffee Roastery
“Maple Latte” and “Big Blue Smoothie”

Crank & Boom Craft Ice Cream
“Big Blue Sundae” (Blueberry Lime Cheesecake Ice Cream with Blueberry Sauce, Graham Crumbles and Whipped Cream, Topped with Blue & White Sprinkles)

Sawyer’s Downtown Bar & Grill
“Rupp Blue Burger” (Blue Cheese Burger)

For more information and to RSPV to the party, visit the Rupp Turns 40 Celebration Facebook page.

Now let’s talk stuff…

 

The Cats to hold walkthrough, fly to Alabama today.

Mark Stoops didn’t have a whole lot to say in his final media appearance of the week, but he did say he is excited about the opportunity in Tuscaloosa and worried about his team competing at a high level and getting better.

“That’s what we’ve been stressing all week is having that great attention to detail, fundamentally playing better,” he said. “Our communication needs to be better, so we’re anxious to get out there and have another great opportunity.”

I wonder if he knows Phil Steele predicts Alabama will keep Kentucky’s offense from scoring a single touchdown and will cover the 35-point spread.

A couple will get married in Tent City.

The Big Blue Madness Campout will have its first wedding when Ray Branham and Vicki Harvey tie the knot in Tent City later this evening. The couple in Tent No. 1 got their marriage license and plan to wed at 5 pm in front of their tent, among several of Big Blue Nation’s finest.

KSR will be there and I’m looking for a plus-one, so please let me know if you or anyone you know would like to be my date.

Love is a beautiful thing.

Today’s Ryder Cup morning schedule:

Here are your Friday morning foursome alternate-shot pairings and matchups:

TIME (ET) UNITED STATES EUROPE
8:35 a.m. Jordan Spieth (2-1-1) & Patrick Reed (3-0-1) Justin Rose (9-3-2) & Henrik Stenson (5-4-2)
8:50 a.m. Rickie Fowler (0-4-4) & Phil Mickelson (16-19-7) Rory McIlroy (6-4-4) & Andy Sullivan (0-0-0)
9:05 a.m. Jimmy Walker (1-1-3) & Zach Johnson (6-6-2) Sergio Garcia (18-9-5) & Martin Kaymer (4-3-3)
9:20 a.m. Dustin Johnson (4-3-0) & Matt Kuchar (4-5-2) Thomas Pieters (0-0-0) & Lee Westwood (20-15-6)

Four-ball matches will take place in the afternoon.

Nick Richards in in Lexington for his official visit.

The five-star center touched down at Blue Grass Airport last night.

He’ll spend the weekend doing the official visit thing and there’s a chance he could pull the trigger and give his commitment to John Calipari while in town.

Nick Richards
Center | 6-11 | 235 lbs.
Manhasset, NY | St. Patrick’s
AAU: Expressions Elite
★★★★★
ESPN No. 12 | 5 C Top247 No. 15 | 2 C
Rivals No. 19 Scout No. 17 | 7 C

If not this weekend, Richards still hopes to commit and sign early, like to the Cats.

Watch the players deliver pizza to campers:

KSR is at Bi-Water Farm for today’s show.

With the Georgetown College Fighting Tiger Pep Band! And prizes!

Get in there.


September 29th, 2016

The Weirdest Fan Traditions in Sports

weirdfantrads

As Kentucky fans, we’re used to it, but when you think about it, Big Blue Madness Campout is a weird tradition. Fans camping out for tickets to a game happens at other schools, but camping out for tickets to a practice? Only at Kentucky.

It was Joe B. Hall that started Midnight Madness — then called “Midnight Special” — back in 1982, but the tradition of camping out for seats started in the Rick Pitino era. Back when the event was held at Memorial Coliseum, there weren’t really tickets; UK used to just open the doors and let as many fans in as they could. Over the years, fans started forming the line earlier and earlier, and in 1995, Wally Clark was determined to be the first person there, so he arrived 17 days early and camped out, sparking a tradition that has stuck ever since. Even when the event moved to Rupp Arena in 2005, fans continued to line up in front of the ticket office at Memorial Coliseum for days on end. Like the program, the event was given new life under John Calipari, and in 2014, a record 760 tents were set up in “Tent City,” one of many memorable moments in an unforgettable season.

Although this year’s crowd is less than years past due to limited camping space, it’s still one of the coolest fan traditions in sports; however, it’s far from the weirdest. Here are some that top it.

(Note: There are tons of weird traditions in sports, so I limited this list to just those started by fans.) 

John Brown University: Throwing toilet paper on the court after the first basket

In the late 1970’s, a couple of students at John Brown University, a liberal arts college in Arkansas, started throwing toilet paper on the court during basketball games, which quickly turned into a tradition. Now, students throw rolls of TP onto the court after the John Brown scores its first basket, which results in a technical foul. Naturally, you don’t want to pick up a technical for this reason every game, so the fans reserve the tradition for one game of the year, the aptly named Toilet Paper Game. It’s even sponsored by Charmin now because of course.


Auburn: Rolling Toomer’s Corner

The tradition of throwing toilet paper rolls onto the oaks at Toomer’s Corner in Auburn started in 1972. The ritual became such a part of Auburn football that in 2011, Harvey Updyke, an Alabama fan, poisoned the oak trees after the Tigers beat the Crimson Tide. The trees eventually died off, but were replaced and the tradition rolls on, even though one of the threes caught on fire after Auburn’s win over LSU last weekend:

Don’t worry: police caught the guy who started the fire, and he now faces a felony charge of 1st degree criminal mischief.


Detroit Red Wings: Throwing octopi on the ice

This is by far the grossest tradition in sports. In 1952, two brothers threw a dead octopus on the ice during the Red Wings’ Stanley Cup playoff run. Each tentacle of the animal represented a win in the playoffs (back then, you only needed to win eight), and when the Red Wings swept the series, the octopus became a good luck charm. Now, fans throw octopi on the ice during home playoff games, and the guy who goes out to clean it up twirls it around his head, which is just disgusting.


Florida Panthers: Rat Trick

In a similar tradition, fans of the Florida Panthers NHL team throw rats (both real and plastic) onto the ice to celebrate goals. The practice started in 1995, when Panthers captain Scott Mellanby killed a rat with a hockey stick in the locker room by smacking it into the wall before a game. During the game, he scored two goals, leading Panthers goalie Jon Vanbiesbrouck to quip, “He scored a rat trick.” The next night, a fan threw a plastic rat on the ice after a goal, and the tradition picked up steam. In 1996, the NHL started allowing refs to penalize the home team if objects were thrown on the ice, but it still happens from time to time, especially when the Panthers are in the playoffs.


Penn: Toast Toss

Penn’s fight song includes the line, “Here’s a toast to dear old Penn,” which used to prompt fans at football games to toast the team with highballs of booze when the song was played between the third and fourth quarters. When alcohol was banned from the stadium in the 1970’s, students started throwing actual toast, or sometimes bagels and muffins. During each game, approximately 20,000-30,000 pieces of toast a thrown.


Taylor University: Silent Night

For the past 20 years, every Friday night before exams, students at Taylor University dress up in costumes for to the annual “Silent Night” game. Fans don’t make a sound until the team scores its tenth point, after which they scream and let loose. Here’s a SportsCenter feature on it from last season:


Wisconsin: “Jump Around”

For obvious reasons, I’m not a Wisconsin fan, but even I have to admit it’s awesome when they play “Jump Around” between the third and fourth quarters:

The 80,000 person mosh pit gets so crazy that it actually registered on the Richter Scale in 2008. This tradition isn’t exactly weird, but I like it so much I had to include it.


West Virginia (and Kentucky): Couch Burning

If Kentucky goes to the Final Four this season (hell, if they beat Alabama tomorrow), inevitably, someone will burn a couch in Lexington. While the act has become a symbol of Kentucky’s success in basketball during the Calipari era, it actually originated in West Virginia in the 1970’s. Couch burning became even more popular in Morgantown about 20 years ago when trash pick-up companies starting slacking on their contracts, leading trash to pile up in the streets, especially in student neighborhoods. Over a 15-year period, 1,799 street fires and 633 dumpster fires were set by West Virginia students, making the happenings on State Street in Lexington look like tiddlywinks. The student government even put together a PSA to discourage students from burning couches:

I doubt it worked.


Wendy’s KSR Top 10 Tweets of the Day

Baconator_Mobile_300x250

The one and only Wendy’s Baconator is a meaty masterpiece in its
own right. Composed of six strips of thick cut, applewood-smoked bacon;
cooked in an oven. Two quarter-pound patties* of fresh, never-frozen,
North American beef raised close it never sees a freezer. Only Wendy’s
has the fresh beef and thick bacon to give you a hamburger worthy of the
name Baconator.


You can be a part of Wendy’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. Now. On to the tweets:

 

#10 John Southworth

But why do you have that many screenshots of Matt?

 

#9 Big Easy

Were y’all talking about Up today on the show?

 

#8 marsha poe

These ladies are my heroes.

 

#7 Alan Shepherd

A live look at the studio today…

 

#6 Jason Burns

Well that’s not photoshopped at all…

 

#5 Brian J. Tabler

Hey, whatever keeps them safe.

 

#4 Coach Salyers

I mean…. you’re probably not wrong.

 

#3 Walter Evans

Now at Big & Tall….

 

#2 J. Skyes

I think that’s what he’s going for….

 

#1 Lindsay Spencer

I don’t know that he’ll ever get it right..

 

@haleysimpKSR


Watch Episode Four of Hey Kentucky!

hey-kentucky

Chip Cosby joins Matt for the fourth episode of Hey Kentucky!  The two discuss UK vs. Alabama and Matt Bevin vs. Andy Beshear.  Drew Franklin makes another appearance to set the scene at Tent City.

Don’t miss it.  Watch the entire show after the jump.

(more…)