I'm finally back in the saddle, and I want to thank Jleverenz, JC25 and A2D2 for helping keep content up on the blog. I was in a place where there was no Internet and no cell phone service, so basically I was living in what felt like the stone age. I'm not sure I liked that part.
Tweet of the Morning:
Random thought: Outside of John Calipari, Sean Miller is recruiting as well as anyone. Set to have his 3rd straight top 5 recruiting class.— Evan Daniels (@EvanDanielsFOX) May 22, 2013
Heh. Funny how every recruiting tweet must be qualified in the context of John Calipari.
I want to direct your attention to this outstanding UK preview article by Bill Connellyy about Kentucky football next year that he did for SBNation.com. It's in the cover as well, but in case you go here first. Also, here's the link to the SEC preview storystream.
Drew Barker jumps up in the Rivals' rankings to near-top 100 status, and Mikel Horton, also a UK commit, moves into the top 150. (Via Hank)
Mark Stoops' late father was a huge influence on his life. Talk about a coaching family!
Kentucky is #97 in the Orlando Sentinals pre-season rankings. It won't take much to surprise from there.
Kentucky's team last year had the worst defensive efficiency rating of any John-Calipari team in ten years. I think that will change next season.
Just in case you've forgotten about Julius Randle...
John Calipari is excited to coach Willie Cauley-Stein and Alex Poythress another year.
"Willie Cauley has a chance at being one of the better players that I’ve ever coached," Calipari said. "It’s not delusional at all (if you) understood how far he had come, understood how far he needed to go, understood he could have been a first-round draft pick."
We had a big debate over WCS during the golf trip I just returned from. I think he starts every game next year.
Calipari has changed his plan for next year, according to Eric Crawford:
Now, [Calipari] has looked at his deficiencies from a year ago and appears to have addressed them all. He has more returning players (thanks in part to circumstance, but also thanks in part to not prodding quite so hard in the NBA's direction in a couple of cases). He has addressed the issue of numbers. He should have depth and competition, plus a bit of insurance in the case of injury.
Dan Issel says UK/UL rivalry is the hottest it's ever been.
Other UK sports
As you no doubt know by now, UK softball won the Lexington Regionals, and is now in the Tempe Super Regional. The winner there will move on to the Women's College World Series in Oklahoma City. The full NCAA bracket can be found here, and the Tempe Super Regional bracket can be found here.
You might be interested in this also:
Softball Bracket Challenge
On Monday, May 27, fans will be able to follow the 2013 NCAA® Women’s College World Series® for softball like never before, with an NCAA-sanctioned bracket challenge hosted by official partner Northwestern Mutual.
In the meantime, fans can go here, like the page and register for the challenge. A Grand Prize winner will be randomly selected from among the four highest bracket point totals and will win a $500 online gift certificate to the NCAA Shop, and one additional randomly selected winner will receive a $100 gift card to the NCAA Shop.
The deadline to enter is Thursday, May 30, before 11:00 a.m. CST.
Kentucky Baseball loses in first round of SEC Tournament to Ole Miss, and is unlikely to be invited to the NCAA Tournament this year.
Brilliance from the football field...(Hank)
I can just see it now... "Gimme your bong, or die!"
Bill Self sold Andrew Wiggins on the idea he could step into Ben McLemore's spot. Okay, well, whatever.
Self learned about Wiggins' commitment like the rest of us did - Twitter.