And what a weekend it was. The Gridiron Felines show that they are not going to look gift horses in the mouth this year, as they took advantage of a 4-0 turnover margin to upend the Dawgs in Athens.
Then the basketball team showed why almost everyone has them in their top five by effortlessly handling Rider, 92-63, in a game that was arguably not as close as the score. This Kentucky team is only limited by their own willingness to learn and work hard, and as the competition gets tougher (beginning tomorrow night), we will see if Calipari's coaching and system will take hold early, or late.
Returning to football, it is simply beyond belief that UK managed to pull out a victory in Georgia on Saturday if you look at the box score. But one thing that deserves further highlighting is just how well UK's special teams played. Kentucky got outstanding field position on every kickoff. A missed PAT and a poor Ryan Tydlacka punt were really the only blemishes on an otherwise sterling special-teams performance.
Another point that needs a little extra emphasis is the ridiculously outstanding play of Sam Maxwell. Who would have believed that Maxwell would come into the starting line up this year and outshine Micah Johnson? True, Micah has suffered from a turf toe injury that has limited his mobility the last few games, but Maxwell has stepped it up to a very high level.
The news follows the jump.
Tobias Harris signs with Tennessee - Rocky Top Talk
Rivals' #1 power forward and #5 overall player has signed with Bruce Pearl and the Vols, arguably the biggest recruiting get in the history of Tennessee Basketball.
Kings Of New York: Syracuse 87, North Carolina 71 - Troy Nunes Is An Absolute Magician
Syracuse crushes North Carolina. The way to 2000 wins just got a little easier.
This Isn't Exactly The Start The SEC Had In Mind - SB Nation
The SEC is off to a slow start in the non-conference season.
Caribbean Kings: Puerto Rico, Paradise Jam Tournaments Highlight Sunday In NCAA Basketball - SB Nation
Louisville has a much closer than expected game against Morgan State.
Paradise Jam: Tennessee 57 DePaul 53, Vols play for title Monday - Rocky Top Talk
Remember that 129-49 throttling of UNC Asheville by the Vols? Depaul was having none of that.
UK showed its better half in upset | KentuckySports.com
"We're not getting style points," Brooks said after the game. "It's not always pretty and this one wasn't pretty, but it looked like Bo Derek running down the beach to me late in the fourth quarter."
Brooks is hilarious. Great win, no matter what it looked like.
UK Recruit Brandon Knight Scores 28 in First Game
I'd like to see Knight take Wall's place next year.
Orlando Sentinel - Gators juniors already thinking about NFL draft by
Florida will be a much different team next year. Can Urban resist the siren call of the Big Golden Dome?
Charleston Classic Finals, South Carolina vs. Miami: A Quick Recap - Garnet And Black Attack
More bad news for the SEC. Dominique Archie may have torn his ACL.
Villanova stops Mississippi to win Tip-Off | Philadelphia Inquirer | 11/23/2009
Ole Miss tries, but fails, to handle #5 Villanova.
Wildcats finally conquer Athens | courier-journal.com | The Courier-Journal
It was UK's first win in Athens since 1977 — the year the Cats' current coach, Rich Brooks, took Oregon to Sanford Stadium in his first game as a collegiate head coach.
In that game 32 years ago, Brooks' team held a late lead and lost.
What is the old Klingon proverb about revenge being a dish "best served cold?" "I said (to the team) I've been waiting a long time — long before they were born, and most of them before their parents even met and married — and we finally got one back for the old man today," Brooks said. "It's a great win."
- No. 10 Wildcats fall in volleyball | courier-journal.com | The Courier-Journal
Hoops hall another link for Bird, Magic - KansasCity.com
But they [Larry Bird and Magic Johnson] liked even less — and this was saying something — how little playing time they received on that all-star team. Joe B. Hall was the coach, and he played his guys, a Kentucky squad that had won the national championship the year before, over the two Midwestern kids.
Via Rush the Court.
IRON BOWL: Alabama focused on task at hand | montgomeryadvertiser.com | Montgomery Advertiser
"It's the type of game where you can't give a pep talk before the game," said Tide senior cornerback Javier Arenas, a native of Florida. "It takes care of itself. If you can't get yourself fired up to play in this one, there's something wrong with you."
The Iron Bow. In my opinion, the most intense rivalry in all of sports, college or professional. I watch this game every year, and it rarely disappoints. But on Friday? I wish it were on Saturday.
Kicking Off Week 13 with Rivalries and Trouble in Athens // 11.23.09 - Team Speed Kills
This might be humorous if it were gallows humor, But I'm pretty sure the Senator was being serious when he said this:
I’m being a little unfair to Kentucky with this. There’s a clear talent gap between the ‘Cats and the Dawgs – Georgia’s coaches aren’t as good as Kentucky’s at getting their charges prepared to play hard for sixty minutes.
To recap: A Georgia fan thinks his coaches were outdone by a centenarian, a man named Joker and a defensive coordinator whose name know one knows. This movie doesn't end well.
The Georgia faithful are not happy.
Kentucky Wildcats 34, Georgia Bulldogs 27: Chicken Little Was an Optimist - Dawg Sports
Statistically, Kentucky never should have been in this game. The Bulldogs outperformed the Wildcats in passing yards (291-137), rushing yards (196-123), first downs (22-15), and time of possession (33:13-26:47). That ought to be a recipe for success, particularly for a team that has home field advantage on its side. The usual suspects reared their ugly heads, however, as two interceptions, two lost fumbles, and five fifteen-yard penalties, almost all of them at the most inopportune times imaginable, doomed the ‘Dawgs.
If you didn't see this game, there is no way you would believe that UK had won. Georgia dominated every statistic except two -- turnover margin and final score.
Les Miles Denies Calling for a Spike; Video Evidence Proves Otherwise - And The Valley Shook
Charlie Weis says indeed, 6-5 not good enough for Notre Dame Fighting Irish - ESPN
"If they decide to make a change, I'd have to say I'd have a tough time arguing with that. If they decide to make a change, I'd have a tough time arguing that because 6-5 is not good enough," the Fighting Irish coach said Sunday. "Especially when you've lost five games by a touchdown or less and several three-point games that went right down to the wire.
Is this coach arguing that he should be fired?
Bobcats end 7-game slide - CharlotteObserver.com
To paraphrase the Dean Smith/Michael Jordan line, only Larry Brown could hold Nazr Mohammed to 18 points.
Good for Nazr. Via Walter's Wildcat World.
- European influence has lasting effect on U.S. basketball -- chicagotribune.com
- My, how the world has changed since Wildcats last beat Vols on gridiron - Kingsport Times-News Online
Week 12 in Review - AthlonSports.com
How about the job Rich Brooks is doing with Kentucky this year? The Wildcats lost starting quarterback Mike Hartline to a knee injury, but freshman Morgan Newton has played well and was a big reason why the Wildcats scored a huge 34-27 upset over Georgia. Don’t be surprised if the Wildcats give Tennessee all they can handle this Saturday.
Is this Kentucky's year? | When You're Strange | GoVolsXtra.com
No streak lives forever and this may be the week Tennessee's domination of Kentucky finally comes to an end. The Vols have found a way to beat the Wildcats 24 consecutive years, the longest streak in any major college football rivalry. Usually, UT had better players up and down the line.
It's time for the streak to die.
Kentucky Wildcats Arrive in Cancun, Mexico
UKCoachCalipari All checked in. Will practice in an hour or so. The place seats about 1300 fans and I hear Kentucky fans will be close to half of them.
I know how it was in Vegas last year. Tons of Kentucky fans, and a few of every other team.
- Kentucky Sports Radio "Stacey Poole Discusses HS Basketball, Why He Chose the Cats and Improving
- Q&A with Kentucky’s John Wall | Vaught's Views
Adams: UT, Kentucky treading on similar path " GoVolsXtra
The same Rich Brooks, who was on the brink of being fired a year later, is now an established SEC coach with two dazzling rebuilding jobs on his resume, first at Oregon, and now at Kentucky. And UT’s Lane Kiffin is the first-time head college coach who is just getting started.
" BBL: What they said from Athens on the UK football win John Clay’s Sidelines
John Clay's Big Blue Links.
- Brooks’ priority is finishing 2nd in SEC East | Vaught's Views
Column: UK’s best perimeter ‘D’ found underneath | The Kentucky Kernel
"I know they have taken a bad rap for some of the 3-pointers that have gone in against them, but I watched every game and a couple of kids went nuts against them," Rider coach Tommy Dempsey said. "They gave up open shots, but you can’t expect them to not give up open shots in the course of the game, especially when they are pressing, jumping in passing lanes and trying to create offense with their defense."
Rick Bozich | UK's front line looks top of the line | courier-journal.com | The Courier-Journal
It was delivered by DeMarcus Cousins, a UK freshman forward. It was accepted by Daniel Orton, another UK freshman forward. It was the result of Cousins, a guy who had started the first half as well as the Wildcats' first three games, suggesting to coach John Calipari that Orton should take his starting spot for the second half of Kentucky's 92-63 victory.
This group is showing signs of becoming a real basketball team.