Today, the first stage of the Tour de France begins. Ah, this is one of my favorite events.
Also, check out SB Nation's Podium Cafe for complete TDF coverage.
Tweet of the Day (so far):
/recruit decommits from Ole Miss /Hugh Freeze tweets photo of fish eating entire man /recruit develops god complex and taste for humans— Jason Kirk (@JasonKirkSBN) June 29, 2013
I seriously have no idea what this means, but it's awesome.
Varsity Preps has a nice interview with Lexington Henry Clay's Elijah Bell. Watch his highlights. [Hank]
Ruh-ro. Trouble in Nashville. Vandy suspends four in a sex crimes investigation. Thugs at Vanderbilt? [Hank]
Bo Pelini of Nebraska kicks a former Kentucky recruit off his team. [Hank]
[Glenn] I don't think I'd want the kid after an assault charge. We don't want to become Louisville under Bobby Petrino.
This ain't happenin', according to Justin Rowland at Cats Illustrated. Bad timing. With our current stable, our incoming recruits and Braylon Heard coming from Nebraska, transferring Pitt running back Rushel Shell isn't coming here. [Hank]
Kentucky is looking to the JUCO ranks for the defense - (5.6) 3 star DB Ronnie Davis and (5.8) 4 star DT Cory Johnson. [Hank]
Three way race for 2013 Kentucky Mr. Football between Barker, Elam and Bonnafon. You can vote multiple times, just exit the poll and get back in to vote again. Barker has asked for help. [Hank]
Mark Stoops says Kentucky has been "very supportive" of football. That has always been true, historically, and I think that support will just grow under this coaching staff.
There is little doubt about this. None at all, really.
John Calipari expects the Harrison twins and James Young to arrive on campus very soon.
Will Coach Cal offer Josh Perkins? I'm not sure.
Is Wiltjer a casualty of the Calipari Way? I think that's a touch absurd, since every player who is invited to play at Kentucky understands that as he signs his Letter of Intent, Calipari is trying to replace him with an even better player. Hat tip: Aaron's blog
Other UK sports
- Congrats to UK women's golfer Sarah Harris for winning the Tennessee Women's Amateur.
Louisville got some commitments this week and has moved back up to #9 in the Rivals Rankings.
[Glenn] Kentucky has more 4-stars by 5-1. Just sayin'.
Just in case you're interested...
Bobby Petrino isn't exactly burning up the recruiting trail. [Hank]
The Renardo Sidney cautionary tale. This kid was once considered a game-changing talent is now so obscure that ESPN's Dana O'Neil was unable to locate him, or anyone who might know his whereabouts:
Eventually, a source produced a phone number with a 213 area code, from Sidney's Los Angeles home base, and a "try this" suggestion. I called and left a message. I sent a text. I called again.
No answer, no response.
Where is Renardo Sidney?
Unfortunately, some of the unchosen early entries in this 2013 NBA Draft are probably destined to join him there.
Sidney is a sad story of what can happen when you make the wrong decisions. For all anyone knows, he is no longer among the living, although I think it more likely that he's simply chosen to disappear. To what, and how he makes ends meet is anyone's guess.
The NBA is a really unforgiving place. Wanting to play there is similar to wanting to be in a real-live version of Mortal Kombat -- except the stakes are complete and utter oblivion rather than death.
Speaking of undrafted players, I wonder what C.J. Leslie thinks of his decision to leave N.C. State early now? Yes, he is an intriguing player, but as I say, the appellation "intriguing" is as much a pejorative as a positive. More at ESPN.
Rick Pitino to release a new book, due out in October. I wonder if he'll disavow his previous statements that leaving Kentucky was a mistake. Or perhaps, he'll treat us to yet another picture of his body art.
Snarky though I am, Pitino's book is likely to be worth a read. He is a very interesting speaker on business subjects.
Other sports news
Liberty Ballers talks about what to expect from Nerlens Noel and his
flat tophigh top fade:
The coolest thing about Noel is that, barring his ACL turning into a pretzel rod, he has almost zero bust potential. He is just so good at weakside defense that even if he never gets better at any other element of his game, he'll still make a positive impact on the court. He'll never turn into Nick Young and start chucking the ball up on the offensive end. Worst case scenario is he disappears on that side of the ball save for a few alley-oops. Really, really high ceiling here.
I think this is right. Noel might become a serviceable offensive player, but even if he doesn't, he's going to give you something you can always use -- blocks, steals, and rebounding. If you need a low-post threat, Noel is probably not your pick. If you need a rim-protector and defensive savant, you can't find a better one.
So who got the better of the Noel/Jrue Holliday trade? King James Gospel has a pretty good article on the subject.
Myck Kabongo goes undrafted, and Burnt Orange Nation's Wescott Eberts looks at the matter.