Robert Morris is on the docket tonight for Kentucky, and this game will tell us an awful lot about this team. Will they mail it in, try hard in futility, or transform themselves?
Tweet of the Morning:
People saying Cal's approach doesn't work? Wins since 2009 - Calipari: 123; Coach K: 121; Roy: 105; Pitino: 104; Crean: 76. #TheMoreYouKnow— Not Jerry Tipton (@NotJerryTipton) March 19, 2013
Glad we got that straight.
Some not-so-great injury news about Shawn Blaylock and Josh Clemons.
Stoops’ biggest asset at Kentucky may be offensive coordinator Neal Brown. Brown’s air raid offense will be tough for any SEC team to prepare for week-in and week-out, and thankfully, the coaching staff realizes the Wildcats won’t beat anyone lining up in a pro-style offense.
Well, that’s not exactly true. The thing is, we just don’t have enough talent to run that offense well.
There’s some of our offers on this list. (Hank)
I think this writer has done a decent job, although he obviously doesn’t know about ticket “sales” for the Spring Game. (Hank)
I blame the creeping influence of the Pod People. Or, bad basketball. I can’t make up my mind.
All the folks who loudly proclaimed that you couldn’t be successful with Freshmen. That shouted from their rooftops that UK would not be able to win National Championships with the kind of system that Cal was bringing in.
No they weren’t not really. It took more than youth to derail this team. It took a weak point guard and a season-ending injury to its star.
For NIT teams, a "mail it in" factor has to be considered. It’s not the Big Dance. It’s not what college players work so hard for, it’s a consolation prize, a focus for jokes and derision by some of the fan base. And internally, a team needs players who want to beat the team across from them at all costs (and a coach who fosters that desire creatively).
Ugh. Doesn’t exactly inspire confidence, does it?
Will sophomore point guard Ryan Harrow be back after an emotional roller coaster of a season which last saw him weeping in the locker room at the SEC Tournament after going 2-for-15 from the field with four turnovers against Vanderbilt, a game which he said cost his team an NCAA tourney bid?
This is really the burning question right now. Harrow’s season a point this year has been an unmitigated disaster by Kentucky standards, and Kentucky standards are the only ones that matter.
Everybody is reading something into this basketball season for UK. Here are some things I am NOT reading into it:
– That success with one-and-dones can’t be sustained. Success is tough to sustain under any kind of process. But UK is in the NIT not because it is a freshman-dominated team, but because the freshmen it has did not turn out to be as good as advertised.
Michigan has a freshman team. It starts three freshmen and a sophomore, and has done all right.
This is right.
Less than three hours after tickets to tonight’s college basketball game between Robert Morris and the University of Kentucky went on sale, athletic department employees were taping "sold out" signs on all the doors.
Well, at least we can still draw a crowd. That is, if you call 3,500 a "crowd."
Other UK sports
- SEC: As women get bids, Tennessee men upset by snub // John Clay's Sidelines
The No. 2 seed is the third in school history for the Wildcats, and ties their highest seed ever in the tournament. Kentucky was also a two seed in 1982 and 2012. The other first-round matchup in Queens, N.Y., features No. 7 seed Dayton (27-2) and No. 10 seed St. John’s (18-12).
I don’t really think UK can win the tournament this year unless somebody knocks off Baylor, and getting past, or even to, UConn will be really hard.
But these girls are nothing if not tough and disciplined, and if UK can get to a Final Four, it would be huge for the sport at Kentucky, and for Matthew Mitchell.
They didn’t get sent out west, and that’s what many people feared.
Kentucky student-athletes Twany Beckham (men’s basketball) and Kastine Evans (women’s basketball) have been named finalists for the 2013 Arthur Ashe Jr. Sports Scholar Award. The winners will be profiled in the April 11, 2013 edition of the Diverse: Issues in Higher Education magazine.
Congrats to Twany and Kastine!
- Tom Leach // Tuesday Links
- John Clay's Big Blue Links // John Clay's Sidelines
- The Morning Mix // Troy Machir, CollegeBasketballTalk
- Les Miles Epic Sax Guy // A Sea Of Blue
These things are always hilarious, but this one? Well, I just barely avoided nose-coffee, so approach with caution.
Very sad. I remember him.
If I was a recruit, this would totally turn me off. (Hank)
Congratulations to Coach Donovan. He certainly deserves it.
- Jabari Parker of Chicago Simeon named the Morgan Wootten Male Player of the Year // ESPN Chicago
Long gone are the days of relevancy for Arkansas as a national program. The Razorbacks have failed to make a postseason tournament—of any kind—since 2008.
They were relevant enough to beat us like a mid-major. I’m just sayin’.
- Must-see opening round matchups // CollegeBasketballTalk
- 3-point shot: Coaches under tighter scrutiny // ESPN
Not only did the SEC tie its fewest number of NCAA bids since the field expanded to 64, it did so with a low batting average. The 14-league team sent three bids to the Tournament, with two being seeded ninth or lower (Ole Miss and Missouri). The Big East had the most bids with seven teams (of 15), but the Mountain West (five of nine teams) and Big Ten (seven of 12) sent more than half their membership to the Tournament.
The bottom line: Tennessee, Kentucky, Arkansas, Alabama, and even teams like LSU, Georgia, Vanderbilt and Texas A&M all spent at least a small portion of the season looking like NCAA-caliber teams. But they didn’t do it enough, and they missed the NCAA Tournament because of it.
That’s pretty much right.
Other sports news
Better not screw around on her, Tiger. She’ll beat the crap out of you.
MKG was never going to be a great scorer. He is, for the foreseeable future at least, a complimentary player.
When you sell your soul to a shoe company…
Some coaches and administrators expressed concern that deregulation in this area might lead to a recruiting arms race that could overwhelm prospects, college coaches and athletics department budgets. Much of the tension is specific to football, though the concerns could translate to any sport.
Latest from the NCAA on recruiting. (Hank)
Farmer faces a $5,000 fine for each count, totaling $210,000. Seven employees who worked with Farmer also face ethics charges.
Bad, Ritchie. Very bad.