Yes, we have reaction to the big news of the week, which is the commitment of Aaron and Andrew Harrison to the University of Kentucky to play basketball next year. They will soon be joined by others, and we'll be talking about that in the coming days. For now, bask in the glow and wonder of what the Kentucky/Calipari marriage has wrought.
Tweet of the Morning:
Could Randle be next? Probably not, I think others will get there first.
Oh, and congrats to Ben on his gig yesterday as the UK analyst during the Harrison's commitment show on ESPNU.
Some of these stories are written almost dripping with awe.
Mississippi State at Kentucky +10: Tennessee is on deck for the Bulldogs, who have been quite lucky so far. Think they sleepwalk through this one?
They just might, and they're not as tough as the Gamecocks.
In a sport where dozens of coaches make multiple millions of dollars a year, one of them is completely obsoleting everyone else's conception of what makes for a successful recruiter. Hobnobbing with rappers. 1.2 million Twitter followers. Self-serving spin worthy of the Presidential election while at the same time, putting his players' career ambitions first. A master brand builder, whatever grey areas Calipari operates in, there is very legitimate substance backing him.
This is the reality of the Kentucky/Calipari juggernaut.
“Other than really one play, I think they played pretty good,” he said.
Upon further review, he’s right. One play, used repeatedly, sabotaged the Wildcats’ 17-7 halftime lead and any hope of an upset.
You'd best bet that Mississippi St. knows this. Until UK finds a way to stop it, it will defeat them.
Well, we already knew this, but it will create a logjam at quarterback, class-wise.
Williams will have surgery to repair the hip injury, but because he already had a redshirt season for a non-medical reason, he cannot apply for another year of eligibility. Williams played in just two of five games this season and carried the ball only 14 times, but he finishes his UK career with 170 carries for 738 yards and seven touchdowns, along with 25 receptions for 90 yards.
For those of you speculating about a medical redshirt for Williams, here's the bad news.
Many pundits suspect Mississippi St. is a paper tiger. Kentucky won't be able to prove that unless they do a much better job of stopping the run.
However, those schools will have to find a way to topple the Kentucky Wildcats who, with 13/2 odds to win March Madness, are Bovada's top choice for the national championship. Head coach John Calipari led his squad to win last year’s tournament after going 16-0 in regular season play in the SEC. Overall, Calipari is 102-14 as a coach since taking over the program three years ago.
Most people I know don't believe Kentucky is likely to win it all this year, but I think they just might.
Of course they did. This was never quite as close as many figured, I suspect, and Under Armor, for all the hype they got in this case, isn't Nike or Adidas. Similarly, Mark Turgeon is no John Calipari.
While tallying assists for Kentucky this season, you should give one to former Purdue standout Robbie Hummel. He assisted in Jon Hood's nearly yearlong recovery from surgery to repair a torn anterior cruciate ligament.
That's pretty cool. ACL's are tricky things. Sometimes you tear one and never worry about it again. Sometimes, it seems like it tears every time you cut. Let's all hope the former for Jon.
Fantastic news for Ol' Roy, North Carolina and college basketball.
Even though it's a guessing game for MSU, I can't see the quarterback situation as a plus for Kentucky.
That Maryland went toe-to-toe with this monolithic machine and nearly emerged victorious counts as a victory in and of itself. Terrapins fans desperate for a rebirth under Turgeon won't like to hear that, I'm sure. But it's true.
"Monolithic machine?" Seriously, Eamonn? And the fact they were in the hunt is a victory in itself? Sorry, no sale.
If Turgeon had gone toe-to-toe with Calipari without the help of Under Armor, the kids' dad, and a long previous relationship, THAT would have been impressive.
This was not impressive. Maryland had EVERY non-basketball advantage possible, and still came up short, including a wealthy apparel company.
I'm shocked, I tell you...Shocked!
In simpler terms, Coach Cal reached into Texas and beat out a school that had much better relationships with the players and that also happened to be the highest-profile program of the shoe company that had sponsored them throughout their last years in high school.
Hey Eamonn -- this is the correct take. Just sayin'.
Some good links in here, as always.
Too bad the 12:21 kickoff prevents the daily double. I wonder what attendance will look like at the football game?
The UK coaches have little idea what they will get out of Jalen Whitlow and Patrick Towles this weekend, which is terrifying. But at the same time, that mystery makes things quite interesting.
It does make things interesting. I expect that it may generate more interest in this game than we otherwise have a right to expect.
Why Calipari wanted the Harrisons: