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Kentucky Wildcats Quickies: Drew Barker's New Brand Edition

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Darin Hinshaw reshapes Drew Barker's brand, Team USA falls in women's soccer and squeaks by in men's basketball, Jedrick Willis update, Alex Poythress gets a deal, and more!

Dale Zanine-USA TODAY Sports

Happy Saturday, Big Blue Nation. Hopefully the rainy weather won't ruin your weekend plans. Let's get to it!

Quarterbacks coach Darin Hinshaw had some interesting things to say about redshirt sophomore Drew Barker at practice yesterday. From Kyle Tucker:

Hinshaw said the former 4-star QB has made a dramatic transformation in the last several months. But not before a frank conversation when Hinshaw first arrived in January. "I said, ‘Let’s see, when I came in and said the name Drew Barker, what does everybody say?’ And the things that came out of my mouth were not good," Hinshaw said. "The things that came out of the AD’s mouth were not good. The things that came out of the equipment room was not good. I said, ‘Your brand stinks. Let’s just call it how it is. So we have to change it.’ And the only way you’re going to change it is not with your mouth; it’s going to be with your actions."

And? Barker posted a 3.75 grade-point average in the spring and 3.5 this summer and took a leadership role on the team, cleaning up his act off the field and elevating his play on it. "He was very hungry for knowledge and wanting to do the right thing, but I don’t think he knew how," Hinshaw said. "I laid it out for him. I explained all the details of what it’s like to be a pro quarterback, to be a professional and handle your business the right way. And he’s done that. He’s worked very hard at it, and it’s become a ritual to him, which is No. 1, the most important thing for a quarterback."

Barker has done all of the things he needed to off the field. If this translates to on the field production, then Kentucky is going to be in good shape.

Tweets of the Day

What Katie Ledecky did last night was insane.

Hope Solo's comment's after the loss to Sweden were uncalled for and the perfect example of a sore loser. More on that in a bit.


Kentucky Wildcats Football

Kentucky and Mark Stoops are going to do all they can to land Landon Young's former high school teammate, Jedrick Wills. He's a five-star tackle, ranked third in his position and 17th overall in the class of 2017, and he's heard the siren song of Alabama. Wills' current teammate, quarterback Walker Wood, is a Kentucky commit and he's doing all he can to keep the elite player in state. Wills plans on making a decision soon but don't expect any fanfare.

Former JUCO quarterback Stephen Johnson has had to make some big adjustments since coming to Kentucky, but his progress is showing and he figures to be a factor when the season starts in three weeks.

Walk-on Charles Walker gets a scholarship offer from Mark Stoops:

An awesome moment for Walker, his coach, and his team.

Former Wildcat will finally play in Commonwealth Stadium, but not as he planned. He is now a member of the Austin Peay football team and they come to Lexington this season.

Kentucky Wildcats Basketball

A big congrats to former Wildcat Alex Poythress as he has signed a deal with the Indiana Pacers for the upcoming season. He will likely spend most of the season on their D-League team, but he's in the NBA and that's all that matters.

More Kentucky Athletics

Governor Matt Bevin named three new members to the UK Board of trustees, including athletics booster Kelly Knight Craft. Thankfully this isn't the sh*t show going on at UofL.

Former Kentucky discus thrower Andrew Evans fails to make the Olympic Finals.

Olympics News

Hope Solo was under fire yesterday after calling the Swedish National Women's Soccer Team cowards after their dramatic 4-3 win over Team USA. This is the first time that the USA team will not compete in the gold match. Solo, who has a history of saying and doing questionable things, was wrong in her comments.

For the second straight game, Team USA had trouble closing out an opponent in Men's basketball.After going up by 18 points early on, Team USA beat Serbia 94-91 in a close call. The US has struggled to play as a team on offense and defense, while Serbia, and previously Australia, has worked to expose those flaws. DeMarcus Cousins finished the game with 5 points, 4 rebounds, and a team-high 5 assists.

Michelle Carter became the first African-American woman to win gold in shot put. The self-proclaimed "Shot Diva" continues a trend of groundbreaking African-American women athletes dominating the Olympics, joining Simone Biles and Simone Manuel.

Katie Ledecky is a machine in the pool, but that machine showed some emotion on the medal podium. Apologies for posting Pat Forde, but this is about Ledecky, not him.

Why USA field hockey suddenly isn't terrible.

Sports Around the Country

After rampant speculation that the NCAA would release it's notice of allegations against the University of Louisville in regards to the prostitution this summer, Jeff Greer from the Louisville Courier-Journal reported yesterday that the investigation is ongoing. NCAA officials are interviewing boosters in order to shed some light on "the background of the program". Gulp. This flys in the face of Rick Pitino telling the media and recruits that the investigation is "by all accounts, behind us". Which leads me to conclude the following: A). RIck Pitino is completely in the dark and has no clue what is going on; or B). He's a liar and he's lying to recruits like Malik Williams. Hmmm.

Alex Rodriguez took third base for the final time as a New York Yankee yesterday. But don't count his career in baseball over yet. He is too close to 700 home runs.

Gary Parrish writes that the NCAA could take a stand against North Carolina. But will they?

In is candid coaches series, Gary Parrish asked coaches if it is OK to hire a prospect's father to help land the recruit. 84% of the coaches he asked said it's not an issue. Probably because they've all done it in the past. I think it's gross.

Ranking college football's top five sleeping giants. I'm afraid Kentucky did not make the list.

Random Quickies

A judge has overturned the conviction of Brendan Dassey, a key subject in the Netflix documentary Making a Murderer. This is a huge development in the case as Dassey's interrogation by police was under heavy criticism. He will be free in 90 days unless the charges are re-filed in court. Dassey and his uncle Stephen Avery were convicted of murdering a young woman despite a lack of hard physical evidence, motive, and questionable ulterior motives of the police and attorneys investigating the crime.

Metallica's seminal metal album, unofficially titled "The Black Album" turns 25. Here are 10 things you didn't know. I bought this CD when I was 10 years old and it still rocks to this day.

What were the 50 best songs of the nineties? Glad you asked. These songs really take me back. But no Pearl Jam? C'mon, man.