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Big Blue Nation Linkapalooza: Friday Edition of "Days of Our Kentucky Wildcats"

This Calipari guy is a genius.
This Calipari guy is a genius.

The buzz today is all about Coach Cal's stopover at McDonalds and trying to get our collective heads around Nerlens Noel's commitment, which arguably gives UK the #1 recruiting class yet again.

In other news, the baseball team, currently #1 in one poll, is headed to Fayetteville to face the #9 Razorbacks. All this and more in the links to follow.

Top 25 (and one): UK solidifies No. 1; Duke, Ohio State move up - NCAA Division // News, Scores, Stats, Schedule and RPI Rankings

John Calipari's Kentucky group appears set to lose just about everyone from last year's national championship group, but after the 'Cats landed the top-ranked player in the nation, Nerlens Noel, we're sticking with UK in the top spot.

Perhaps I was wrong about not being a pre-season #1, but check this: UK, IU, UL #1/2/3 respectively? Woooowww.

Arkansas baseball to host No. 1 Kentucky // The Baxter Bulletin

"They are the best team on paper," Van Horn said Thursday. "I would say they are going to be the best team we have seen all year when we see them tomorrow night."

We need this series. Badly.

NBA Draft decisions: The good, the bad, the ugly - NCAA Basketball - Sporting News

Kendall Marshall, PG, North Carolina. At least one mock draft has him nearly in the lottery. If there’s the potential to pull that off, Marshall must cash in on the con. He won’t be able to defend, shoot or penetrate at the NBA level. He can get by as a starting point guard because of his passing skill — but only for dreadful teams that will dream of the day they can make him a backup.

Mike DeCourcy and I see this one the same way. Be sure to read the whole thing for a lot more.

Kentucky's incoming freshmen confident they can lead 'Cats to repeat // Sporting News

"We’re going to be able to work together," Goodwin said. "I know we are because (Noel is) a team player and I’m a team player and Alex is a team player and Willie’s a team player. There are going to be a lot of amazing things that happen."

Sounds good, Archie. If you guys can remember that there is no "I" in team, you just might have what it takes.

Richt gets big laugh out of Spurrier’s latest jab // UGA sports blog

What makes it particularly funny is Spurrier has been so lax on discipline. His previous quarterback Stephen Garcia was suspended five times under Spurrier’s watch but, interestingly, never missed a game until he was kicked off the team in the middle of this past season.

Pot, meet kettle.

Someone forgot to proofread John Calipari’s key to the city plaque | CollegeBasketballTalk

And to mark Calipari’s arrival the city decided to give him a key to the city. No problem with that at all.

But there were two glaring spelling errors on the plaque, with "the" missing the "e" and the confusion of "its" with "it’s".

Having made that error far too many times myself, I feel I am in no position to criticize.

John Calipari takes trophy to a McDonald’s // John Clay's Sidelines

John Clay's Big Blue Links.

LSU points basketball search at Virginia // John Clay's Sidelines

John Clay's SEC links.

Top 25 college basketball recruiting classes - MaxPreps News

Is Kentucky in the midst of the greatest recruiting run in modern college basketball history?

Yes. Next question.

Kentucky Lands Top Recruit Nerlens Noel // Team Speed Kills

There have been so many hat shuffling routines when recruits commit that it's somewhat refreshing when a guy picks a novel way to let the world know which school he's going to. So, high five to Nerlens Noel of Tilton, New Hampshire for shaving a UK logo into the back of his head for the big reveal that he's going to play at Kentucky next season. That it is under a high-top fade makes it that much better.

That was pretty cool, I have to admit.

Calipari begins trophy tour of state

Couch Signing Maker's Mark Bottles //

Awesome response so far. Congrats to Tim, it's great to see him get placed on a Maker's Mark bottle.

John Clay: Calipari's recruiting is a dream that never ends | John Clay |

If you're a Kentucky fan, this has to be a dream, right?

A dream that is continuing into its fourth year.

One moment very soon, you will snap awake. It is inevitable. You will be disappointed to know what you experienced was only a dream. You won't be shocked, however.

If this is a dream, I don't wanna wake up.

Alabama loses nearly $2 million on BCS championship appearance // CBSSports

So you wanna be a football champ, huh? Get out the gold card, baby.

Does Adding Nerlens Noel Make Kentucky Favorites To Repeat? | The Hoop Doctors

But the even scarier scenario is the fact that the Wilcats in all likelihood aren’t done yet on the recruiting front. They are also in the mix for 3 other elite level uncommited HS stars like PF Tony Parker, PF Anthony Bennett, and SF Amile Jefferson. In my estimation, Calipari will get at least one more commitment and will be the Pre-season #1 team prior to the 2012-2013 season.

He could get at least one more, but I'm not sanguine that will elevate us to pre-season #1. Top five, for sure, top 3 likely.

Georgetown just had no real chance against Kentucky | Washington Examiner

There seems to be no stopping the recruiting machine of John Calipari, who must be tithing the NBA since the league's age restriction is keeping his pipeline in business. As long as Calipari is around, it will be news only when he doesn't have one of the top incoming classes.

When your opponents give up before it happens, you know you're good.

Nerlens Noel shows he’s not afraid of huge expectations trying to follow Anthony Davis | vaughtsviews

Davis came to UK with huge expectations and exceeded them. Noel knows that. He could have gone to Syracuse or Georgetown and not faced the pressure of being the next Anthony Davis. Instead, he saw what Calipari did for Davis and embraced being UK’s next dominant big man.

You see this in a lot of the top kids today. They want to measure themselves against the best, the cream of the crop. That's attractive rather than a negative.

John Calipari surprises a small-town McDonald’s with the NCAA championship trophy // Yahoo! Sports

"I turned my head and he and his wife came in with the trophy and a bunch of other people," said 17-year-old employee Corey Terry, who was manning the drive-thru window at the time. "Everything stopped while he was here. He told us to get together with the trophy and we all took a picture with it."

Calipari is a genius. He holds this state in the palm of his hand.