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Kentucky Wildcats Morning Quickies: Jimmy Ellis Edition

News and commentary from around the Big Blue Internet. Mark Stoops gets a contract extension until 2018. Jim Robic, Kenny Payne both get contract extensions. Barry Rohrssen's contract terms are announced. More.

Hulton Archive

Boxing champion Jimmy Ellis has died. He passed away yesterday at 74 years old. I remember Ellis from his heavyweight days, and I remember pulling for him to beat Jerry Quarry, whom I didn't care much for as a fighter.

Tweet of the Morning

It's interesting that John Robic makes less than Kenny Payne. I never would have figured that.

Your Quickies:

Kentucky football
  • I think John Clay has Stoops' new contract exactly right: It's a show of faith, not a leap. I think Stoops has earned that show based on recruiting alone. Critics will point out that he hasn't won a single SEC game yet, and they are correct. But I think he will, and so does UK.

  • Jennifer Smith reports on Mark Stoops' extension:

    Citing recruiting success and increased attendance figures, Barnhart extended Mark Stoops' agreement through the 2018 season, giving the coach five years left on his deal.

    "We had the nation's second-largest increase in attendance last season and we have had the two largest spring-game attendances in school history," Barnhart said in a release sent out by UK to announce the extension. "In recruiting, Mark and his tireless assistant coaches have made an obvious impact with their first two classes and that momentum is carrying forward for 2015."

    Now, all we need are wins. I think Stoops will deliver.

  • Stewart Mandel both condemns, and condones, the SEC staying with eight league games, but I found this curious:

    Personally, I would have liked to see the league go to nine games if only because it would be better for the fans to see one more league game and one less FCS or Sun Belt game. I can't say I blame the SEC for standing pat. But mark my word, it will eventually cost one of its teams a playoff berth.

    Maybe so, but it won't be Kentucky. We've been playing at least one FBS program for years outside of conference.

  • WBN asks if Mark Stoops deserved an extension so soon? It wasn't much of a bump, so I think it reflects his recruiting and popularity rather than performance so far.

  • Saturday Down South talks SEC defenses, and notices that Kentucky is recruiting well for the defensive side of the ball. They correctly point out that if the offense continues to suck, the defense will also.

  • Kentucky loses defensive back target to Troy. I hate that. Hat tip: NextCats

Kentucky basketball
Other Kentucky sports
College football
  • The new college football playoff is going to release Top 25 rankings each week. Stewart Mandel wants to know why. I think that's a very good question. What purpose does that serve?

  • Andy Staples says Jameis Winston's shoplifting raises "legitimate concerns":

    But the first thing is what defending Heisman Trophy winner Jameis Winston did on Tuesday night. The second is what the Leon County Sheriff's Office did on Wednesday. According to major Mike Wood, the Florida State quarterback ordered $32.72 worth of crab legs and crawfish from a Publix supermarket in Tallahassee, Fla., and walked out of the store without paying. Store employees had Winston on video, and when deputies went to Winston's residence and asked what happened, Winston told them he had left the store without paying and hadn't realized it until he got home. "But he, in fact, had made no effort to contact Publix or returned to pay prior to the deputies' arrival," Wood said.

    If I had done that, the first thing I would do would be go back to the store and give them their money, all of it, and apologize for doing something careless. That's what Winston should have done.

    I was first inclined to chalk this up as another scolding column over-reacting to a youthful indiscretion. But Winston's apparent lack of remorse gives me pause. Maybe it shouldn't. I'm willing to be convinced otherwise.

  • Former Georgia Bulldogs assistant Jim Donnan is indicted in a fraud scheme for over $80 million by the federal government.

  • Do nine Pac-12 games beat eight SEC games? Based on recent history, it's the other way around.

  • Team Speed Kills looks at the bid to end the requirement for conferences to have at least 12 teams before they have a league championship game.

College basketball
Other sports news
  • What happened in the NBA Playoffs last night. Sanity appears to have returned to the playoffs out of the chaos of the first round.

  • Mark Jackson gets fired, and the current average tenure of an NBA coach is 2.4 seasons. Why would Calipari, for example, ever want to jump into such a maelstrom? Consider:

    The most amazing finding in the chart is that Jeff Hornacek is the longest-tenured coach in the Pacific Division. He was hired 11 months and 10 days ago. Michael Malone was hired two days later, and Doc Rivers joined the Clippers a couple of weeks later. Going into next season, the five Pacific coaches will have a combined three seasons of experience with their current teams. That's straight-up lunacy.