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Big Blue Nation Linkapalooza: Spring Kentucky Football Game Edition

Kentucky football coach Joker Phillips brings the lads out for the spring football scrimmage today.
Kentucky football coach Joker Phillips brings the lads out for the spring football scrimmage today.

Today is the day that the Wildcats will be playing their spring football scrimmage, and Alex will have a full preview of it in a little while. Also, Erin Andrews came by Louisville yesterday to kick off the Kentucky Derby Festival, and included in her comments some talk about Coach Cal and Traitor Rick.

In baseball, the Wildcats dropped game 1 yesterday to the LSU Tigers, 5-4. They play them again today and tomorrow. Finally, all is quiet on the Amile Jefferson and Anthony Bennett front as of right now. Todays links follow.

Scrimmage will assess new starters for Kentucky football // The Courier-Journal

Today (Saturday, April 21) fans will get their first glimpse at just how close UK is to finding answers at all those spots. The Blue-White scrimmage at Commonwealth Stadium marks the last of 15 spring practices. Coach Joker Phillips, though, said he doesn’t need to see the game to evaluate the team’s progress.

I'll be watching the news out of this with interest. I think Kentucky has some potential, but the Wildcats will be running into a very tough season for a team so young and untested.

ESPN's Erin Andrews wows crowd at Derby Festival luncheon // The Courier-Journal

Andrews, a University of Florida graduate who lives in New York, called Calipari "a hot mess" (but good friend), and said he once borrowed a breath mint from her before an interview. She referred to Pitino as "Mr. Mafia, Mr. Godfather" and jokingly chided him because his U of L team beat her alma mater in this year’s NCAA tournament.

Gausman Pitches No. 1 LSU to Series-Opening Win // Kentucky Wildcats Official Athletic Site

The No. 1 LSU Tigers plated two runs in the first inning and got a strong starting pitching performance from ace Kevin Gausman, posting a 5-4 win over No. 2 Kentucky in the series opener, LSU's eighth consecutive win, on a gorgeous Friday night in front of a season-best 3,785 at Cliff Hagan Stadium.

Ugh. Well, last weekend, the Wildcats swept the double-header. Hopefully, they can win today and Sunday as well.

Won, done for UK five // The Times-Tribune

These talented young players aren't harmed. They're about to be millionaires. But the UK revolving door - won and done is the standard rather than an aberration - does further diminish the notion that big-time college athletics are about ... college.

We've already addressed this at length, but just as a parting shot, perhaps these authors should understand that a diploma has never been the only mission of most universities.

Kentucky Exit Interview: Terrence Jones - Encore season was worth the extra bow // The Courier-Journal

Q: You and coach John Calipari butted heads a few times in your two years at UK, but looking back, did that help you?

Jones: Me and Cal, I don’t feel we ever bumped heads. He just told me how he felt about everything and I always accepted it, took it in however he told me. I knew that he knew a lot more about the game than me, and I respected that and listened to however he told me something — just listened to what he said and not how he said it. I just think he helped me become the player I am today.

Mike Lupica: 4/19 // ESPN New York

If you haven't heard Calipari's comments on the Bo Ryan matter (such as they are), there they are on the Mike Lupica show. Fast forward to the 22:00 mark for Calipari's comments.

Video: Kentucky's Maxwell Smith // SEC Blog - ESPN

Chris Low talks with Maxwell Smith about the upcoming season.

Via Duke Basketball Report

Is Tubby Smith a Minnesota lifer? // CollegeBasketballTalk

Foster’s take has merit. As often as Smith’s name is brought up in coaching searches, he never seems to physically turn up in any of the towns he’s supposedly itching to burn rubber to. He never exhibits the merest public twitch of dislike for his home of the past five-plus years, either. In fact, he seems to genuinely enjoy the Twin Cities.

I think Smith is genuinely happy in Minnesota, and has no intention of leaving. At his age, if you like a place, you stick with it.

Florida forward Walter Pitchford to transfer //

The 6-foot-10, 221-pound Pitchford played in 13 games this past season for the Gators, scoring six points with four rebounds. He played 22 minutes.

Anthony Bennett tweets that it’s going to be hard // John Clay's Sidelines