Good morning, ladies and gentlemen of the Big Blue Nation, and welcome to the Tuesday Morning Quickies.
The big news of right now is the decommitment of DJ Jeffries from the 2019 recruiting class, along with the conventional wisdom that he is bound for Penny Hardaway’s Memphis team. It is also becoming conventional wisdom that this indicates Memphis as a likely destination for 2019’ #1 ranked player, James Wiseman.
Since Hardaway coached both these guys in AAU ball, he has an inside track with both of them that Calipari lacks. My own suspicion is that Jeffries’ parents were a big factor in his change of heart, because I have a feeling they are big fans of Hardaway, who by all accounts is a very likable person.
Also, Jeffries has consistently said that he’d like to play alongside James Wiseman in college, and some have taken this to mean that Jeffries decommitment is a sign that Wiseman is Memphis-bound. That may well be.
Historically, we have seen situations like this before. Sometimes they work out just like the conventional wisdom says, but more often there is an unexpected surprise. I have no personal knowledge of the situation, but I do know two things — John Calipari is a great recruiter with a massive amount of experience recruiting and coaching at the college level, and Penny Hardaway has neither. Whether or not that matters (enough) to these young men is anyone’s guess.
Tweet of the Morning
As every Cat fan over 60 will always remind you if you ever mention how good a player is. “That’s only because you never saw Issel”— Steven Romines (@Sromines) July 31, 2018
Heh. True, dat.
- Bryant Koback, who transfered from UK to Toledo, is immediately eligible to play.
- Bill Connelley says Kentucky is underachieving under Mark Stoops, and also that Kentucky is doing just fine under Mark Stoops. How can this be? Is Mark Stoops the Kwasitz Haderach? No, probably not, but read the whole thing, it is interesting and not just for the stat-lovers.
- How Kentucky football coaches have fared in season six. The answer is, not that well, but it’s a mixed bag.
- Jennifer Smith says there’s a lot to learn about this year’s Wildcats.
- Kentucky fans react to Mark Story’s list of the top 50 UK basketball wins of all time.
My two cents — UK over IU in 1975 was probably the most meaningful game because of the quality of the team they defeated and the stakes. I would swap the #3 and #5 games, elevating the Mardi Gras Miracle and lowering UK vs. Wichita State in 2014. I’m sure I’d make a few other changes, but those are the only ones I’d make in the top ten.
- Kentucky has emerged as the favorite for Kahlil Whitney of Chicago, a 6-6 wing ranked #19 by 247Sports and #23 by Rivals.com
- Ten big basketball recruiting questions as “busy season” begins. I think most fans are concerned with the last one; what will James Wiseman do, especially now that DJ Jeffries has reopened his recruitment.
- Speaking of James Wiseman, SI asks, “Where will he go?”
- Aaron Torres says that Penny Hardaway is a threat on the recruiting trail. Certainly, for players he’s coached, no doubt he is. When he starts landing top players he has no connection to, then I’ll agree. I may even agree now, but I haven’t seen enough just yet.
Former Wildcats Derek Willis and Isaiah Briscoe will be at Wildcat Wearhouse in the Fayette Mall Tuesday from 5:30-6:30pm. On Wednesday, Aug 1 Willis & Briscoe will be joined by Hamidou Diallo at the E Town Mall in Elizabethtown from 6:30-7:30pm.— Vaughts' Views (@vaughtsviews) July 31, 2018
- In case you missed the Big Blue Bahamas uniforms:
Other Kentucky sports
- Nick Saban is right about not expanding the CFB Playoff, but Tim Sullivan says it’s for the wrong reasons.
- The subpoenas that Kansas received in the FBI college basketball investigation were not the same as the ones received by Maryland. Michael McCann of Sports Illustrated analyzes why this is. Consider:
Earlier this month, SI detailed the legal impact of subpoenas sent to the University of Maryland. Those subpoenas requested emails, texts and other records regarding, among other things, the Terrapins’ recruitment of five-star power forward Silvio De Sousa, of IMG Academy in Bradenton, Fla. College basketball experts who closely follow recruiting were convinced that De Sousa, who had moved from Angola to the U.S. before the start of high school, would attend Maryland. Indications were that De Sousa had all but formally committed.
In August 2017, De Sousa surprisingly announced that he would attend the University of Kansas. The unexpected move sent shockwaves through not only college basketball but also the sneaker industry: Maryland is sponsored by Under Armour, while Kansas is sponsored by Adidas. If Skechers, which recently sued Adidas for “funneling hundreds of thousands of dollars in secret payments to players,” is factually correct in its claims against Adidas, then Adidas would have again “gamed the system” to its favor and to the detriment of a rival.
Looks like the DOJ just might be coming for Adidas. Louisville, as I recall, is an Adidas school as well.
- Rick Pitino will be publishing a “tell all” memoir. Well, who knows, maybe it will be good. I’m sure it will be mostly about defending you-know-who.
- Pat Forde and Pete Thamel have joined forces for an article about the FBI NCAA basketball investigation.
Other sports news
Seriously, witch-hunts aside, social media, especially Twitter, is the devil. I’ll bet I’d get a lot of agreement from these dudes. But also seriously, is every recorded utterance, regardless of age, to be considered permanently damning if later found to be “inappropriate?” Seems we’re heading that way…
- Mars is closer to Earth than it’s been in 15 years.
- Einstein was right…Again! Can you see my shocked face?
- Scientists are testing a mysterious force that exists between superconducting wires. II predict we’ll never run out of mysterious forces in my lifetime.