Wednesday, November 28, 2012

Kentucky vs. Notre Dame preview



   The Cats travel to South Bend, IN tomorrow night to take on the Fighting Irish of Notre Dame. This will be Kentucky's first true road game of the season, and it will be a tough one. Kentucky leads the series against Notre Dame 42-18, winning the last meeting (Dec. 8, 2010) 72-58. 


   Notre Dame by the numbers:

PPG: 74
RPG: 40
APG: 19
SPG: 5
BPG: 5
TPG: 12

FG%: 49
FT%: 63
3pt%: 37

  Looking at those numbers, it's clear what Kentucky needs to do. REBOUND THE BALL!!!! With the Irish averaging 40 RPG, no way Kentucky can give them easy second chance shots like they have been doing this season and expect to win the game.  Every person on the floor has got to start crashing the boards, especially the big men. No way, with two 7 footers should Kentucky give up offensive rebounds at the rate they have been.


   Defense. If Kentucky plays tight defense, and closes out on the Irish shooters, they could walk away with a fairly easy W. The reason I said this will be a tough game at the beginning of this post is,  because so far this season Kentucky hasn't done those two things (rebound and defend) very well.


   The good news for Kentucky is Ryan Harrow is back practicing with the team, and is over his "mystery illness" that caused him to lose 7 lbs. I know earlier today Calipari said "Goodwin is our point guard, he's earned it". I agree, he has earned it, but don't kid yourself if you think he wants Archie at the point over Harrow. Putting Archie at the point limits his scoring ability, and that is what Archie does best, score. Harrow will need some time to get back in the swing of things before Cal has him as his starting point guard, then you will see the REAL Archie Goodwin. I know Goodwin has been the leading or co-leading scorer in just about every game so far while running the point, but put him at the two, and he will dominate people without having to worry about running the offense. 


   Kentucky has been showing signs of improvement every game so far (rebounding aside), and tomorrow night we should see much of the same. At least we better hope  or we could see another loss, something Kentucky fans aren't used to seeing so early in the season under Calipari. Fans have to remember this is a very, very, young team. It could take a while for them to understand what Cal wants. Once they understand it, they could hurt some people's feelings come march. 


Sunday, November 25, 2012

No excuse for delayed games



College basketball season is well underway, and the only way I know this is by watching teams I could do without seeing. Kentucky's record so far is 4-1, and I have only gotten to see two of those games thanks to my "local" cable company. 

   Sure, at the begining of the season Kentucky plays "no name" teams but, fans still wouldn't mind watching it LIVE. Not to mention, one of the teams our "local" cable company decided Cat fans wouldn't really care about seeing was Morehead State, a Kentucky team, coached by a former Kentucky player, who by the way almost upset the Cats. How did I know this? No I didn't watch the delayed broadcast at 11:30pm, I had to listen to the radio. Did we slip back to the 1960's, when the only way to keep with Kentucky was mainly by listening to the radio? Yes, it's true you can watch a live feed on the Internet but, living in KENTUCKY we shouldn't have to stare at a computer, tablet, or phone screen just to see a game live. Every Kentucky and yes Louisville game should be shown live on basic cable, not to mention on the "sports package" customers pay extra for. 


In closing, if this "local" cable company thinks Kentucky fans wouldn't care to miss the "no name" teams Kentucky plays. They need to watch Big Blue Madness, where 26,000 people pack Rupp Arena just to watch a one hour practice. Sad part is, that's the only way you get to see the most anticipated night of the year for Cat fans, because no doubt your "local" cable company will be showning it on delay. 

Saturday, November 24, 2012

Monday, November 19, 2012

Andrew Wiggins played in Scott County




The #1 ranked player in the class of 2013, and Huntington Prep standout Andrew Wiggins played in Scott County, Kentucky over the weekend. His team squared off against Christian Faith winning 61-44 with Andrew adding 17pts and 11rbs.

With Kentucky heavily recruiting Wiggins you knew that Cat fans would turn out in mass quantities, and they did. Fans started lining up at three o'clock, one hour before the game for their chance to see what some is saying the best high school player since LeBron James. Kentucky fans efforts to impress Andrew didn't go unnoticed.

"He was very impressed." Huntington Prep coach Rob Fulford told me. "They showed him a lot of love. He's pretty guarded about what he says when it comes to recruiting, but he was obviously appreciative of the turn out and crowd support."


It's been said that Wiggins won't sign until spring. So, Cat fans have a while to wait to see if their efforts at impressing Andrew worked. Until then, if you get a chance to watch this kid play, take it. You won't be sorry. No matter where he ends up, he will make an instant impact unlike any we've seen in quite sometime.

Saturday, November 17, 2012

ARCHIE GOODWIN SLAM #BBN #UK #UK #BBN

ARCHIE GOODWIN SLAM 

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This dunk led to this picture







Commercial for Derek Anderson's Victory H2O Water




By now I'm sure you all know about Derek Anderson's own personal brand of water Victory H2O.
Now check out the (click the link below) commercial for it. Looks like Derek could suit up and play tomorrow. You up for it Derek?

http://youtu.be/4TdOC_--Edw

Lafayette player celebrates Goodwin charge call

Photo courtesy: barstoolsports.com

If you got to watch the beat down Kentucky put on Lafayette last night, then you no doubt seen Archie Goodwin posterize the young man in this picture. 

The nasty dunk by Goodwin was taken away by a charge called on the play. This is how the little fella who drew the charge choose to celebrate what will no doubt be his best basketball moment. 

Friday, November 16, 2012

Lafayette/Kentucky preview



Coming off a loss to Duke Tuesday night, Kentucky is back in action tonight against the Leopards of Lafayette. This team shouldn't cause any problem what so ever for Kentucky, but stranger things have happened. Still, I look for this to be your typical early season blow out over an obviously out matched, and out talented Lafayette team. 


   For those who don't know anything about Lafayette, I'll hit the high spots. 

Location:
Easton, PA ( about 70 miles west of New York City)

Enrollment:
2,279

Colors:
Maroon and White

Nickname:
Leopards


Conference:
Patriot League


First Game:
Feb. 1, 1901

All-time record:
1,203-1,087 (.525)

NCAA Tournament Appearances:
3 (last one in 2000)


The game review will more than likely be tomorrow because of the horrible cable company I have. If I have to watch one more game on delay....

In closing, the Duke loss was hard to take, I'll admit. But also, it was good to see this young team respond when down 15 with 9:00 left to play and cut it to three, and giving themselves a chance to win the game.  No doubt not having an actual point guard on the floor didn't help matters any. Speaking of not having a point guard, Kentucky will be without PG Ryan Harrow for the second straight game while he fights off an illness that hasn't been made public. Rumors are that he may actually have mono. If that's what it actually is, he could be sidelined for 3-4 weeks, and that's not good. Despite Harrows early season struggles, he runs the team well, and I think would have made a big difference in the Duke game. So let's hope Ryan gets well soon, and get ready to watch the Cats take out their frustration over the Duke loss on the might Leopards. 

Thursday, November 15, 2012

Harrellson and Bledsoe together again





Josh Harrellson and Eric Bledsoe were glad to see each other last during the Heat Clippers game.

It's good to see former players still enjoy seeing each other

Monday, November 12, 2012

UK vs. Duke preview




   Tomorrow night, just five nights after an opening game against Maryland.  Kentucky and Duke will square off in what is normally called CATlanta, GA. If Kentucky hopes to have a chance to pull off a victory, they will have to have an extremely better effort than what we saw in Brooklyn. If they give up 28 offensive rebounds against Duke, mark it down as a loss and move on. But after watching Cal's reactions on the sideline during the Maryland game, something tells me that rebounding will be much improved. 


   Another aspect of the game to keep an eye on will be Duke's ability to shoot the 3. Several players on Duke's team shot 40% or better from three in their opening game against Georgia State. But, Kentucky seems to have the ability to close out on shooters fairly quickly, so we shall see. 


   Then there's Mason Plumlee. This guy seems like he has played for Duke since the 90's, but the kid can play. This will very possibly be one of, if not the best big man Kentucky will play all year. It should be a very good challenge for Nole and Cauley-Stein in their young NCAA careers. Again, for Kentucky to have a chance, these two have got to have a better effort than they had Friday night, at least in the rebound column. If both of these guys aren't in double figures in rebounding it could turn out to be a long night. 


   Cal will definitely have his hands full trying to keep his guys from being over excited in this game. Duke is a team that every player wants to play against, and with it being the second game of the year, it could get ugly at times. But, if the freshman can control their emotions, and play to their potential, Kentucky could very easily win this contest. The only good thing about playing these two opening opponents, Kentucky is getting some valuable "big game" experience very early this year. That will come in very handy later in the year. 


   To hold you over until tomorrow night I'll leave you with this quote from Dick Vitale. 

"If you want to beat Kentucky, you better get them early this year."


Also worth noting is the announcers ESPN is sending to Atlanta for the Duke Kentucky game. Dickey V will of course be there in all his greatness. But, by now I'm sure you've heard that none other than that Big Bobby Kinght will be there as well. Needless to say, I bet he has a rough way to go tomorrow night. Also, you will all be witness to when he actually has to speak the word that, in the past he has refused to say.... KENTUCKY. I really hope ESPN sets up a halftime interview between he and Cal. Now that would be worth watching. 

Saturday, November 10, 2012

Jarrod Polson... takes the bull by the horns



   With the final seconds on the clock, I bet no one had Jarrod Polson as the one who would seal the deal. The kid has shown up, pracitced everyday, and when his name was called, he took the bull by the horns. With a stat line (10pts,3ast, and 1stl) like he had last night, he deserves his own headline in the newspaper. John Calipari said in the preseason that he had no problem playing Jarrod some minutes at the point. But let's be honest, who believed him? Seeing what Jarrod was capable of against a quality opponent, I have to admit I'm in favor of the kid getting more minutes. 


   Now to the game. What we saw last night is what you'd expect to see out of a bunch of freshman in their first game of the season. There was a lot to like, and A LOT to dislike. Turnovers, lack of rebounding, guys getting lost on defense, and giving up offensive rebounds (23 to be exact) will give you the results like you saw last night. In the first half, Kentucky overwhelmed Maryland on the inside and out. In the second half Kentucky spent much of the time clinging to what was once a 15 point lead.  Maryland was getting offensive rebounds at will, and converting them for very easy baskets. With basically two 7 footers in the game, one of them being the #1 recruit in the country, that is beyond uncalled for.  This should be a very good rebounding Kentucky team, it will just take time for them to understand what they have to do on this level. But unfortunately, there isn't much time before their next big test.  Duke and Kentucky will tip it off Tuesday night in Atlanta on ESPN. Until then, I imagine practices will be very spirited, and rebounding will be a big focus. 

Wednesday, November 7, 2012

Kyle Wiltjer and Coach Cal




The "Big Blue Nation Cares" telethon is in its second hour and has raised over $160,000 dollars so far.

Kyle Wiltjer, John Hood, and Coach Calipari want you to keep calling and donating. Every little bit helps.


Inside Lexington: 859-299-5466

Outside Lexington: 855-257-2700

Superstorm Sandy Telethon




The election is over, some are happy, others are not. There's nothing you can do about the results. Here's something that you actually CAN do something about.


As by now everyone I'm sure has seen, Superstorm Sandy has destroyed many parts of the Northeast. Thousands lost everything, and need help.

The University of Kentucky and WKYT has teamed up to put together another telethon to help out with the relief effort.

Tonight starting at 7pm, you can call and donate any amount of money to the Redcross and it will be matched dollar for dollar by a "founders group" Calipari asked to get involved. So if you donate $20, it's actually a $40 donation.


Current players will be on hand to take calls and donations. There are also many items up for auction with the 100% of the proceeds going to the Redcross.

Any amount you can spare will be a big help for those that are in desperate need in the Northeast.


To make donations in the Lexington area call: 859-299-5466

Outside of Lexington: 855-257-2700

The check with %100 of the proceeds will be presented Friday night on the court of the Barclays Center before the game against Maryland. Lets see how big of a check we can hand them.

#BBNCARES

Saturday, November 3, 2012

A very late UK/Northwood review



I had to wait to watch this game because of it being televised so late. In this part of Kentucky, if you don't have dish, it seems that you always have to catch the first few games on tape delay. Instead of complaining, I'm just gonna get into the review of the game. 


   First let me say, this Kentucky team looked better in their first game (exhibition) than I thought they would. They done many things well from driving to the basket, blocking shots, shooting the ball, and rebounding. But there was also some things I seen that is a little concerning. Their on ball defense leaves a lot to be desired. No one could stay in front of their man on defense. The good part about this is, it showed how good the secondary, and help defense is on this team. Everytime someone lost their man on defense (which was often), someone always picked them up before they could get to the basket. Noel, Cauley-Stein, and Archie Goodwin saved their teammates time after time with impressive shot blocking ability. What shots they didn't block, they altered so much  there was no chance of Northwood scoring on the inside.  Noel and Cauley-Stein, when in the game together is going to be one of the biggest matchup problems most teams will see all year. Both are extremely athletic, and can guard multiple positions. Mix that with their ability to close out on shooters out on the wings, and other teams are going to struggle scoring inside or out once this team figures out defense. 


With eleven different lineups used against Northwood, Calipari showed how many options he has at his disposal during the course of the game.  Of course it still being the exhibition portion of the schedule, Cal is just trying to figure out who plays well together, and who responds well in certain situations. It's safe to say, when everyone figures out their role on the team, Cal will have an answer for anything another team tries to throw out on the floor. 


Everyone played well, but the one that stuck out to me, and probably all of you was Archie Goodwin. Sure it was against Northwood, but Goodwin got to the basket when and where he wanted. There wasn't a single player on the floor (teammates included) who could stop him from driving the lane. The impressive thing is that more times than not, Goodwin converted his drives for either a basket, or a "and one".  This kid is the real deal, and it's going to be interesting to see what he is capable of going forward this season. 


   All in all, I was actually impressed how well the Cats played in the game. I was expecting some struggle with it being early in the season. While there were some things they will need address (turnovers and defense), there was also a lot to be excited about. Cal will get them to where they need to be, they just may take a few bumps early until they can grasp what Cal is teaching them.