Good morning, ladies and gentlemen of the Big Blue Nation, and welcome to the Tuesday Morning Quickies.
Today’s big news is all about the commitment of 2019’s #1 recruit, James Wiseman, who is expected to announce today at noon on ESPN who his school choice will be.
Unfortunately, Kentucky is not favored to be that choice — Memphis is. This is tough for Kentucky because 1) Wiseman is from Memphis and attends high school there, and 2) Penny Hardaway, the new coach at Memphis, is a legend in the city and Wiseman’s former AAU and high school coach.
Normally, you’d have to favor Kentucky in a matchup like this, but there are so many things working in Memphis’ favor, including the prospect of playing most of his games in front of his family and connections without having them move, that it’s tough to figure Kentucky wins this one. It isn’t for lack of effort on Kentucky’s part — Coach Cal and the staff have made Wiseman their highest priority despite the obstacles littering their path. Alas, geography still matters more than we’d like to think.
Still, it would be a mistake to count Kentucky out of this, as Coach Cal has pulled more than one recruiting upset. Still, I wouldn’t get my hopes up, or get too down if Wiseman picks his home town school.
Tweet of the Morning
I talked to multiple folks involved in the recruitment today, and they all expect — again, “expect” — James Wiseman to pick Memphis. If it happens, Penny Hardaway will be the first to ever get the nation’s No. 1 player in the same calendar year in which he got his first DI job.— Gary Parrish (@GaryParrishCBS) November 20, 2018
Ugh. Not good news for the Big Blue Nation. Maybe there will be a surprise.
- Saturday is coming:
Kentucky and Louisville square off in 2018 Governor’s Cup Saturday at Cardinal Stadium in Louisville with UK looking for its 9th win while the Cards are trying to escape an 8-game losing streak. UK opened as a 17.5-pts favorite. What say you? @UKFootball @UofLFootball #BBN #L1C4— Oscar Combs (@wildcatnews) November 19, 2018
- Kentucky’s senior day this past weekend had a lot of memorable moments, including getting Josh Paschal on the field. Not only that, Josh played really well.
- The Louisville Quarterback Club names Wandayle Robinson (UK commit for next year) as the 2018 Paul Hornung Award winner.
- Josh Allen named finalist for the Chuck Bednarik Award for the outstanding defensive football player of the year. He was also named a finalist for the Butkus Award, which honors the best linebacker in America.
- Josh Paschal named SEC Co-defensive Player of the Week on his return to the field. Well deserved.
- UK remains steady at #10 in the AP poll.
- Are 18 rebounds the new standard for PJ Washington? Well, I’d sure love to see him average at least double-digits.
- The signing period is almost over. How many of Coach Cal’s recruiting targets will make a move?
Other Kentucky sports
- University of Texas player talks trash (even though it was widely seen as the truth as well) and gets reprimanded by the Big 12.
Let’s be honest, this is poor sportsmanship and the Big 12 was right to reprimand him. This is unfortunately the kind of thing that can lead to repercussions down the road in a game.
- Tough start to 2018 for Villanova and Syracuse.
- Poll attacks — Gary Parrish notes that at least three AP voters seem unaware that West Virginia lost to Western Kentucky.
Other sports news
- The Washington Wizards are horrible, and the team chemistry is worse. Consider this, from The Ringer:
Regardless of whatever deals Grunfeld might be able to make between now and the February 7, 2019 trade deadline, these first 16 games and Monday’s report make it clear that Washington is screwed and cannot be allowed to continue as presently constituted. There is no saving the Wizards, who—save for a couple of postseason series in which their best players put all the bullshit to the side and just played their asses off—have never been as good as they’ve thought and have never deserved to be regarded as highly as they’ve regarded themselves.
- Scientists may have discovered the Sun’s identical twin.
- Where’s our warp drive to the stars? Apparently, NASA is playing around with the concept.
- Do we actually experience the flow of time?