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Kentucky Wildcats Sports: Big Blue Bric-a-Brac

As most of you no doubt know, bric-a-brac is a term used to describe a collection of curios, in this case, a collection of news and/or commentary about the Wildcats and what's going on in the Big Blue Nation.

Let's start with the Tony Wroten thing.  Wroten made a tweet the other day that said ""@UKCoachCalipari aye coach. I just wanna know why u stopped recruiting me?"  This has become all the rage on Twitter, and a search of the word Calipari will produce numerous retweets of this and related comments.

Frankly, I don't think it's a mystery as to why Calipari quit recruiting Wroten.  Wroten is a talented player and has great college potential, but his excessive use of Twitter to expose his life and the lives of others to millions of people, along with some very questionable comments, is the kind of thing that makes you wonder what kind of a teammate Wroten would be, and not in a good way.  In my opinion, Calipari decided that Wroten's love of the off-the-cuff tweet was an indicator that he could be a potential distraction at Kentucky, and decided to free up Wroten for the affections of others, like Louisville coach Rick Pitino.

Now, I honestly hope this doesn't happen, but suppose Wroten goes to Louisville and becomes another Derrick Caracter?  Can you imagine the fun that UK fans could have at Pitino's expense?  I know there isn't exactly a dearth of fodder for mockery of Pitino these days, but as they say, the more, the merrier.

Then, of course, there is the possible flip side -- Wroten goes to Louisville and becomes an all-American, leads Louisville to victory over the favored 'Cats, etc.  I guess you have to take the good with the bad.

Let's add a few more odds and ends to our bric-a-brac this morning

  • How do you make good SEC football coaches look bad?  By being Les Miles, according to Kevin Scarbinsky.
  • The Enes Kanter saga continues.  His father says that Fenerbahce Ulker, his former Turkish team, is trying to make an example of Kanter.  He is undoubtedly right.  Fenerbahce, FIBA, and every other Euroleague team are all on board in this effort, unless I miss my guess.

    The whole purpose of this is to hopefully throw enough confusion into Kanter's eligibility that the NCAA will eventually throw up their collective hands and say that Kanter will either not be eligible, or will miss a significant part of the season.  Their hope is that this will warn off other defectors from the Euroleagues to American colleges, and if they get the result I have outlined, it may work.

    The NCAA should not be suckered by this effort at obfuscation, but they probably will.  Sometimes you have to wonder if the eggheads that run the NCAA are too isolated in their ivory tower to deal with situations that require a little common sense.
  • Former UK commit Vinnie Zollo likes Western Kentucky.  I'd love to see him there.
  • Looks like sanctimonious Fanhouse columnist Jay Mariotti is no longer that.  Somewhere, Gregg Doyel is doing flip-flops in his flip-flops.
  • "Rick Pitino has a 'bridge year' to sell you for Louisville."  Great lede by Eric Crawford, and this isn't too bad either:
    Bridge season? Sounds more like a ledge season. I don't think this is what the university had in mind when it built its new downtown arena — Hey, by the way, have you heard about the new arena? — right next to the Second Street Bridge.
    C'mon, laugh, Louisville fans.  You know it's funny.

  • Mike Miller:
    Calipari imbued the program with a renewed sense of "We can do anything because we're Kentucky basketball." By opening his tenure with a brilliant season - and following it up with the No. 1 recruiting class - I'd also expect more of the same.
    Honestly, I think there is no real reason for Calipari to try to manage expectations at Kentucky.  Does he really think it will work?  If so, he just "don't know us very well, do he?"
  • Randall Cobb is as mad as hell, and he's not going to take it anymore:
    "I'm pissed off," Cobb said. "I'm practicing pissed off and I'm going to play pissed off this week. I'm sick of losing. We've lost two straight, and I'm going to motivate my teammates however I can this week for them to play with a pissed-off attitude."
    Better pissed-off than pissed-on, I always say.
  • From Team Speed Kills:
    Bruce Pearl has a history of recruiting missteps
    Tennessee fans will likely find some way to blame this on John Calipari.
    Heh. No doubt.
  • DeMarcus Cousins has an impressive debut (Hat tip:  John Clay).  We'll be missing the personality of the Big Cuz this year.

Finally, we have this piece by Jon Rothstein of (Hat tip:  Aaron's Blog), taking on the Eric Bledsoe case from a novel direction.  You need to read the whole thing as this is one of those well-written and thought-provoking pieces that I want to be very careful not to excerpt the heart out of.

I love the fact that he compares Bledsoe's and Michael Oher's cases, but the reality is that much of Bledsoe's grade difficulties were likely due to misplaced priorities, whereas Oher's was due to a learning disability.  That's primarily why people don't see the two as necessarily comparable.

I do agree with Rothstein that Bledsoe's grade improvement was likely due to very hard work (and possibly a teacher assist), and I think that has a lot to do with why the school board would have required a smoking gun, signed confession and videotape before changing Bledsoe's transcript.