Today marks the beginning of the UT-UK week, a game that used to carry more weight a long time ago. The Vols have dominated the series in the last three decades and UK has endured more heartbreaking losses to UT than probably all other SEC teams combined.
For me, the game means just a little bit more because where I grew up in Southern Virginia you were either a Vol, or a Wildcat, and most of my friends were Vols. The arguments growing up were epic and sometimes crept into personal and on the precipice of physical.
I once wore my block K cape to school as an accessory after UK beat UT 101-40 in basketball. When Steve Spurrier was at Florida dominating UT, I once printed off new Rocky Top lyrics and posted them all over school after a particularly disappointed UT loss to the Gators.
"Rocky Toooop, you'll always be, second in the SSSS-E-CCCCC.. Poor old Rocky Top, Gator Wannabeeeeees (While Gator Chomping)"
I was pretty proud of it considering this was pre-internet days and my 14-year old mind made it up. Now, in some cruel twist of fate, I make my home in Knoxville and have for the past 9 years. I may have planted roots in this city, but they are still as blue as ever and this game still holds a little more oomph to it for me.
Our 'Cats are 7-point underdogs at home this weekend and for good reason. UT nearly took down Alabama in Tuscaloosa and we got boat raced in Starkville. I like our 'Cats to bounce back and play well, but I am not sure we can atone for last season's embarrassment in Knoxville.
TWEET(S) OF THE NIGHT
Kentucky Basketball is approaching. https://t.co/JhjsX20POx— Big Blue Nation (@BigBlue9ation) October 25, 2015
750 happy UK basketball lovin' ladies pic.twitter.com/K2zx4fcS6O— Tyler Thompson (@MrsTylerKSR) October 25, 2015
Landry Jones is starting and Tyler Murphy who's a WR is the backup QB for the Steelers, but Tim Tebow is still a free agent? Ridiculous.— Eric Rosenthal (@ericsports) October 25, 2015
SKAL IS FREE! Now watch me whip /||\_ _/````\_ Now watch me nae nae \_ || \_ _/`''''`\_— BBN4LIFE (@lahrUK) October 24, 2015
- Austin MacGinnis' three field goals gives him 30 for his career, he is only the 7th UK kicker to reach that volume. Assuming health, he is only 40% into his career at UK. MacGinnis will leave UK as our best kicker of all-time.
- Drew Barker's collegiate debut went ok, he did have the bad interception but he was also getting smashed in the middle of the throw. He ended the night 7 of 9 for 42 yards and 20 yards on three carries (two producing first downs). Considering it was his first game action since high school, it was a positive debut.
"It was awesome," Barker said after the 42-16 loss. "I was just taking in the moment. First college snaps. It was a great experience. Just everything to learn off of it and I was just happy to be back playing football again in a live situation."
- Coach Calipari held his annual women's clinic today and over 750 women (a record) attended. KSR's Tyler Thompson had some good updates from the event.
UK fans clean up Tyler Ulis' locker at the Women's Clinic https://t.co/SCC9cxEfch— Tyler Thompson (@MrsTylerKSR) October 25, 2015
UK strength coach Rob Harris says Tyler Ulis eats 4500 calories a day. Wow.— Tyler Thompson (@MrsTylerKSR) October 25, 2015
The ladies wanted @Eddie_Bounce24 to dance, so he danced pic.twitter.com/NwJ3Qo98Cj— Tyler Thompson (@MrsTylerKSR) October 25, 2015
Calipari addressing the group at the Women's Clinic, makes fun of his own "bouffant" hairstyle pic.twitter.com/ehBwHDEJXU— Tyler Thompson (@MrsTylerKSR) October 25, 2015
- Jamal Murray is quite ambidextrous, apparently. He can shoot as well from three left-handed as right handed, how is that even fair?
"We need him to score baskets and create havoc," Calipari said. "He has ways of getting balls in the basket left and right hand. As a matter of fact, he shoots 3-pointers as well lefty as he does righty. And he likes to show me."
- Number three ranked UK Rifle team beat Ole Miss and North Georgia in the home opener
- The Women's Volleyball team rode defense to a sweep of Ole Miss over the weekend, the 'Cats are ranked 21st in America.
- Freshman Payton Atkins scored her first career goal in a 1-1 draw between the 'Cats and Volunteers in Women's Soccer. The draw earned UK a valuable point in league play.
- A Mississippi State cheerleader decided to taunt Josh Forrest on the sidelines of a play, not sure what the taunt was but it was entertaining.
Mississippi State Cheerleader Taunted A Kentucky Player https://t.co/Jno9TgUL3Z pic.twitter.com/SSUK45YyrX— Michael Shamburger (@mshamburger1) October 25, 2015
- The University of Miami has fired Al Golden effective immediately. Golden lost at home 58-0 to a Clemson team that did not even go to the locker room at halftime. The loss was the worst in school history and put a bow on top of Golden's colossal failure at Miami. Miami was a fringe top-10 recruiter with Golden but seemed to regress every year even with superior talent.
- Minnesota Timberwolves coach Flip Saunders has passed away at the age of 60 due to Cancer. It was just August when Saunders announced he was battling a "very treatable and curable" Hodgkins Lymphoma. Things progressed quickly and tragically ultimately leading to Saunders passing yesterday.
Powerful tribute to Flip Saunders from Kevin Garnett. (via Kevin Garnett / Facebook) pic.twitter.com/pY164lgYSI— SportsCenter (@SportsCenter) October 25, 2015
I've been thinking for 30 minutes of what to say but words can't describe how special and important… https://t.co/4w9iRZVIqb— Karl-Anthony Towns (@KarlTowns) October 25, 2015
- Freshman UCLA QB Josh Rosen decided to put a hot tub in his dorm room, LOL. Strong move by the True Freshman.
- Former Alabama QB A.J. McCarron decided to troll the Volunteers after their win Saturday. Butch Jones once referred to Alabama as 'The Red Team' and McCarron had a question of his own.
Oh I almost forgot man does it just feel great or what to beat the ORANGE team for 9 straight?? Wonder if we're still the RED team? #doubtit— AJ McCarron (@10AJMcCarron) October 25, 2015
- Washington Receiver DeSean Jackson continues to puzzle off the field. There is a report of 4-5 armed men entering his home and fighting with up to six individuals and it likely being gang-related.
- USC Wide Receiver JuJu Smith-Schuster executed a nasty stiff arm/throw against Utah on Saturday night
- The NFL Trade Deadline is fast approaching and there are rumors of some big names being on the block. Matt Forte, Vernon Davis, and Roddy White among them.
- Team USA's women soccer team avenged a draw vs. Brazil by winning 3-1 yesterday. They scored early to take the lead on the fancy footwork of the quite lovely Alex Morgan.
- Arian Foster likely tore his Achilles on Sunday, it is hard to imagine the oft-injured star returning from this injury to any role other than reserve in the future.
- Jacob Tamme caught 3 passes for 36 yards Sunday
- Wesley Woodyard had a team high 9 tackles for Tennessee on Sunday
- Avery Williamson denied Jacob Tamme a touchdown with his first career interception to go with his 5 tackles
- Bud Dupree only had one tackle but it was for loss and he had a pass break up Sunday
- Stevie Johnson had 4 catches for 50 yards Sunday.
- Danny Trevathan and Randall Cobb had bye weeks.
- Stefon Diggs made Teddy Bridgewater look good on this Jim Edmonds-esque stretch and catch for a Touchdown.
.@stefon_diggs turns "overthrown pass" into "Catch of the Year Contender". So so so soooooo sick. #MINvsDET https://t.co/7L9TZ9SpHR— NFL (@NFL) October 25, 2015
- The Kansas City Royals and the New York Mets will be kicking off the 2015 World Series, Mets Manager Terry Collins has named Matt Harvey as the game 1 starter.
- Is there any doubt that Dirk Nowitzki won Halloween?
Lurch was in the house last night.... @DannyBMFFL pic.twitter.com/8AHIiNIA3s— Dirk Nowitzki (@swish41) October 25, 2015
- Umm, if you live anywhere near this psychopath, you need to leave immediately. A lady in Minnesota was mad about the neighborhood kids being... well neighborhood kids. She decided to send the kids home with anonymous notes asking the families "The children look delicious, may I have a taste." WTF?
- Five new pop tarts flavors are coming: Watermelon, Chocalatey Caramel, Pink Lemonade, Frosted Spring Strawberry, and ....... MAPLE BACON!!!!
- Holy friggin Hell The Walking Dead... this season has been awesome and tonight was a massively heavy episode. Spoiler Alert: I cannot believe the killed him, this was honestly my toughest loss of the show. Not sure why, but it got to me.
- If you are a fan of the James Bond series you are going to like the pretty cool infographic of the Bond Girl Evolution from the Huffington Post.