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Morning Newspaper: Here There Be Tygers Edition

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Today, the Wildcats face the LSU Tigers in a game that could hold Kentucky's NCAA tournament chances in the balance.  A loss here at home, and UK will have failed to defeat a single ranked team all season long, at home or away.  The #18 ranked Tigers are just the sort of team that a tournament-bound team would be expected to defeat at home.  In this writer's opinion, losing this one sends the 'Cats to the NIT unless they win the automatic NCAA bid by winning the conference championship.

And now, the news.

Kentucky Basketball News

  • A.J. Stewart still on the team.  I have no idea what is going on with all this, but it has been going on all season.  I expect some changes will be made in the off-season.  More here.
  • At home with coach Billy Gillispie.
  • Looks like Temple will be guarding Meeks today.  I like that matchup.  More here.
  • Stevenson not hungry enough.  I totally agree.  Stevenson has disappeared in the last 5 games, and his lack of consistency is one reason why Kentucky is so up and down.  He needs to be up today.
  • LSU poses Billy's biggest threat.  John Clay says this is the biggest game of Gillispie's career so far, and I agree with him.  Clay also says we don't need the A.J. Stewart circus, and he's right, but this team has been a bit of a circus all year.  This whole year has been a bit of a soap opera, and after all the drama of last year, it is not welcome in the Big Blue Nation.

    I have about reached my limit of drama.  We need some good basketball around here.  I hope we get some today, and not just by LSU.
  • Patterson is the 'Cats' insider.  Gillispie says Patterson's playing well, and we will need all of that this afternoon.

Kentucky Football/Other Sports News

  • Who is the SEC's most irritating football coach?  That one's easy, at least right now.
  • Athlon Sports says UK is well represented in recruiting this year from a quarterback standpoint.
  • Bat Cats win their home opener, 16-5.  More here.
  • UK's Ashley Trimble wins the women's pentathlon in the SEC Indoor track and field conference championship.
  • And The Valley Shook, the SB Nation LSU blog, has an LSU-UK preview.
  • Gamecock Man at Garnet and Black Attack takes a gimlet-eyed look at Billy Gillsipie.  I think he pretty much nails it.  But then again, I guess that's no surprise, since my position and his are for all intents and purposes identical.

    Others may legitimately view the situation differently, but for my money, you can't go around firing coaches after two years unless they commit some form of moral turpitude.  Absent that, they should get at least four years, in my opinion, but I think a defensible argument could be made that if Gillsipie can't improve significantly next year (depending on who we lose), a serious look at his employment is in order.  I don't agree with that, but I do think it is defensible.

NCAA Basketball News

  • Rocky Top Talk looks at the upcoming SEC games.  Many big ones there, including today.
  • More "SEC is weak in basketball" talk from the Bleacher Report.  Whatever, dude.

NCAA Football News

Other News of Interest

  • Shaq goes off for 45 points.  The old guy (in NBA terms, of course) still has it, it seems.