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Sunday Headlines: Jacob Toppin Edition

Jacob Toppin finally finds his joy in what had been a frustrating season before his breakout in Kentucky’s blowout win over the Cards.

Jacob Toppin UK Athletics

Good morning BBN! We hope you’re having a safe and wonderful New Year’s weekend!

The basketball Cats are certainly entering the new year with more cheer after their blowout win over the Louisville Cardinals, a game that had an unexpected star in senior forward Jacob Toppin.

It’s no secret that Toppin had struggled to find his role in this Kentucky team, which had many wondering if he should be reduced to a limited bench role. After all, he shot a combined 3/14 from the field over his last three games with six turnovers.

Saturday was a different story, as Toppin was easily the best man on the floor for either squad en route to a career game, scoring 24 points on 10/15 shooting with seven boards and two assists.

After the game, Toppin admitted he was reaching “rock bottom” before he finally broke out and showed the world what he’s capable of.

“I’ve been in a rough patch that I needed to get out,” Toppin said of his recent mental state. “I’ve had a lot of support from my teammates and my coaching staff, and it just feels good to be back to my old self. I feel good mentally and physically. I had a good talk with Coach Cal the other day, I had a good talk with my teammates, and then I called a few other people just to try and get back right mentally, and it helped a lot.”

Here’s to hoping this is the Jacob Toppin we’ll be seeing for the rest of the season.

Tweet of the Day

More new swaggy uniforms!

The future is bright with these two.


Toppin, Tshiebwe Lead Kentucky Past Louisville – UK Athletics
Toppin capped his career performance with an emphatic, putback slam of a Tshiebwe miss with less than five minutes to go in the game. The Cats would lead by as many as 27 in the second half before settling for the 23-point victory.

Jacob Toppin on mental state: 'I had reached rock bottom' - 247
Starting with Yale game on Dec. 10, Toppin had made just 5-of-20 shots and his playing time slipped from 31 minutes against Yale to 24 in the loss to UCLA to 18 against Florida A&M to 12 at Missouri.

Kentucky Falls to Iowa in TransPerfect Music City Bowl – UK Athletics
The Kentucky defense held its own but the offense could never get going as Iowa topped the Cats 21-0 on Saturday in the TransPerfect Music City Bowl.

Kentucky excited for Destin Wade's future despite challenging debut - 247
The true freshman made both his first career start and collegiate debut at Nissan Stadium in Nashville, just minutes from his hometown of Spring Hill, Tennessee in Saturday's Music City Bowl against an Iowa defense that entered play ranked sixth best in the country.

John Calipari wants Kentucky to play "deliberate" basketball - On3
After the win over Louisville, John Calipari and Oscar Tshiebwe said that a slower, more “deliberate” style of play suits Kentucky.

Iowa's defense, special teams dominate Kentucky in Music City Bowl - On3
Punt to win? Iowa did just that along with elite-level defense to handle Kentucky with ease as the Music City Bowl.

John Calipari thanks fans for welcoming Kenny Payne back to Rupp Arena - On3
John Calipari thanked fans for giving Louisville head coach Kenny Payne a warm ovation before today's game at Rupp Arena.

Three Takeaways From Kentucky's 21-0 Music City Bowl Loss to Iowa - Sports Illustrated
"Things are going to be fine," Mark Stoops said after the game. "We have a very good football team that wants to come back hungry ... lot of work to do, but I'm really excited about it because I feel like there's a great nucleus of this young players. There's a really good set of great guys with experience coming back."

Wildcats, No. 24/23 Razorbacks Ring in the New Year in Memorial Coliseum – UK Athletics
The Kentucky women’s basketball program will ring in the new year by playing host No. 24/23 Arkansas at 2 pm ET inside Memorial Coliseum. The game will be broadcast on SEC Network+, with Jeff Piecoro and Christi Thomas on the call.

Company Unveils Designer Hypercar that Runs on Fuel Made from Plastic - GNN
The men pedigree behind the Lamborghini Countach are putting their designs over an engine that runs on converted plastic waste.

The Top 10 Acts of Kindness in 2022 Warmed Our Hearts and Restored Our Faith in Strangers and Neighbors - GNN
An act of kindness is like lighting a candle in a dark room, reminding everyone that such a point of light will always penetrate the darkness.