Kentucky Wildcats: Morning Quickies - Final Four Eve Edition

Kevin C. Cox

News and commentary from around the Big Blue Internet. Football Wildcats improving in practice. Pac-12 supervisor Ed Rush resigns in disgrace. Problems around Auburn football deepen. UK Gymnastics in NCAA's. More.

Yesterday, Ed Rush, the Pac-12 supervisor of officials who allegedly declared a bounty on Sean Miller, resigned from his position. Also in today's news, Auburn's woes get deeper, and Gene Chizik responds.

Tweet of the Morning:

Congratulations to coach Pitino on his selection. He certainly deserves it.

Your Quickies:

Kentucky football
Kentucky basketball
  • Just in case you didn't see the game, you wouldn't want to miss this. Via Sam Henson:

  • The Kentucky Commits are Already Smack-Talking Pros | Ky Cat Stats

    Meeks next turned the mic over to Julius Randle and Marcus Lee, asking them what they think about next year’s regular season matchup with North Carolina.

    "I honestly think we’re going to blow y’all out by 70," Lee replied before Randle raised the stakes by simply stating "80."

    Smack talk among recruits. Gotta love it.

  • Andrew Wiggins And The Tar Heels // CBS Charlotte

    I have gone on record as saying I thought Andrew Wiggins would be a Tar Heel, no doubt. Since then some things have changed and to say I still feel that strongly would be a lie. Kentucky obviously has made up considerable ground and Kansas is still a very strong option for him.

    I don’t like to be hateful, here, but if he thinks Kentucky has made up any ground, he’s completely clueless. Kentucky has always been the co-favorite to land Wiggins, and many in the know will tell you that they’ve always been the outright favorite.

    UNC entered the discussion late, and are still a player, no doubt. So is Kansas. But I would be surprised if Wiggins went anywhere but FSU if he doesn’t go to Kentucky.

  • NCAA Tournament: Bizarro 2013 Final Four w/ 4th-Year Players

    "Of all sad words of tongue or pen, the saddest are these, ’It might have been." – John Greenleaf Wittier

    I often think about what a four-year team would look like. This year, especially, it depresses me.

Other UK sports
Links posts
College football
  • Mississippi State's new recruiting tool: Cans of Swag // SBNation.com

    We’ve already been witness to the glory of Mississippi State’s recruiting letters, telling us that we are ballers. But, guys, we were just scratching the surface.

    Old guys trying to be hip is … funny. I can safely say this without being accused of ageism because, well, I am one – an old guy, that is.

    We must disclaim everything these days. Check.

  • Gene Chizik calls Auburn Tigers allegations 'short on facts and logic' // ESPN

    "The recent story published by Selena Roberts is more of the same. It once again portrays Auburn University, current and former coaches, professors, fans, supporters and community officials in a false light," Chizik wrote.

    Something tells me he’s going to get a lot more chances to explain himself.

  • Miami goes on offensive against NCAA in scathing filing // CBS Sports

    I think it’s important to remember that despite the incompetent and stupid mistakes made by the NCAA, Miami is a gigantic NCAA rules violator.

    Miami is using the "But look what they did!" distraction to make everyone look away from their rampant wrongdoing that absolutely needs to be adjudicated. No, the NCAA should not use the tainted evidence they gathered, and they have removed it from the charges.

    What the NCAA did in this case was incredibly unethical, but that doesn’t get Miami a "Get out of jail free" card, and that’s what they’re demanding. I’m not at all convinced that their self-imposed penalties are sufficient, but even if they are, that should be adjudicated by the process in place. Otherwise, it’s just going to look like they skated.

  • Report: Auburn kept failed tests for synthetic drug secret

    A six-month investigation conducted by ESPN The Magazine and the ESPN show E:60 revealed the widespread popularity of the synthetic drug, describing it as an "epidemic" that led to "a rash of failed drug tests and a decision at the highest levels of the university to keep the results confidential." … According to Jacobs, the decision was made because synthetic marijuana was not "part of the school’s official drug-testing policy and therefore not something coaches could punish students for using," ESPN reports.

    I’m sure they should have done something, maybe suspend the players for conduct detrimental to the team, at the very least.

    The "We didn’t have a policy banning these drugs" simply won’t fly, and it obviously doesn’t pass any reasonable test of ethics, or at least, what should pass for ethics. A 10-second Google search turned up enough information for anyone to be concerned about what this stuff might be doing to young men, certainly enough for the football team to take action. If you can’t action it due to a drug policy, action it based on a conduct policy.

    But no. Can’t risk suspending all those players. Auburn, you’re looking pretty bad here, bub.

  • Western Kentucky to move to C-USA // SI.com

    Good move for my alma mater.

College basketball
  • Western Kentucky’s Morton resigns amid allegations stemming from NCAA investigation of Miami // The Washington Post

    This is a worrisome sign for Clint Hurtt at Louisville.

  • Media buzz continues for Louisville’s Ware // www.ajc.com

    Look, I’m as unhappy as anybody that Ware got hurt, and I’m ecstatic to see he’s doing well.

    It is curious, however, that Ware has suddenly become a cause célèbre. It’s funny, I don’t recall Nerlens Noel being invited to appear on David Letterman, or any of the other athletes that have suffered bad injuries this year.

    This entire thing has now gone well past saturation in my mind.

  • Final Four coaches disappointed in Mike Rice

    "I absolutely do not believe there’s that coaching style going on. I do not," said Boeheim, who is vying for his second national title in Atlanta. "I’ll go out where you probably shouldn’t go. I don’t think there’s a coach in the country that does that."

    I agree with both men. I think this does happen, but it is fortunately very rare.

  • Pac-12 Conference ref boss Ed Rush resigns after technical foul bounty scandal - ESPN

    Ed Rush, who resigned Thursday as Pac-12 coordinator of officials following comments that he made about Arizona coach Sean Miller during internal meetings with his officials before the league tournament, said his remarks were "absolutely, 100 percent said in jest" and were said at the "wrong place, wrong time, wrong audience."

    It doesn’t matter if he said it in jest or not, it was a complete abdication ethical conduct by Rush. He should have resigned, and I consider it a resignation in absolute disgrace.

  • Arizona basketball: Gordon’s gamble

    "Show me a power forward, and I’ll show you a kid who thinks they’re a small forward," says Scout’s Josh Gershon.

    But that kind of thinking, Givony said, "got Alex Poythress in trouble" earlier this season when the 6-7 2012 McDonald’s All American played small forward at Kentucky.

    Do any of you really believe that’s what got Poythress in trouble? I don’t. My recollection is that some of his best games came early in the season.

    With that said, small forward is not something you can play by an act of will. Poythress’ ballhandling would have to undergo a major upgrade for that position, among other things.

  • Baylor Wins Its First NIT Title, Over Iowa // NYTimes.com
  • Two Rutgers players come to fired Rice's defense // CBSSports.com

    "I feel if people had a chance to see the other portions of practice, or had been at practice, their judgment would not be as severe," Johnson said. "I am not saying what he did wasn’t wrong, because I do believe it was wrong. But it is also tough because it was a highlight reel of his worst moments.

    I’m sure this is true, but in the YouTube era, you cannot ever go off like Rice did. Ever. Public judgment is often rendered divorced of context, and if the conduct is bad enough, context doesn’t help, especially postmortem.

    This is a different time when people, especially public people, are forced to tamp down their impulse to be unequivocal and deal with reality more carefully. It’s like the public shunnings of the past, but on a massive scale. You have to respect that, whether you like it or not.

  • 2013 College Basketball Coaching Carousel: Grading the Hires

    Minnesota - Richard Pitino (head coach, Florida International) As I tweeted the other day, I do not love this hire. After all, is Pitino known for being more than Rick’s kid at this point? Yes, he did a solid job in his first year at FIU, nearly leading a program that was a disaster consider Isiah Thomas’s lack of focus to the tournament, but he has only been a head coach for one year. So you are firing Tubby Smith for a guy that is still all potential with not much of a resume? Grade: C

    I think this is right. The media gushed over this hire, but honestly, the measurables don’t add up to a great decision. This is what you call a "celebrity hire," where the son is trading on the celebrity of his dad.

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