Posts from Monday, June 29
Cats loaded with first-round picks (as if you didn’t already know)
Posted at 8:22 p.m. EDT – Eric Lindsey, UK Media Relations
If you’re a UK fan, this type of stuff never gets old.
The Cats have three 2010 first-round picks on this year’s team, including the top overall pick, according to an early mock draft done by Jeff Goodman of FOXSports.com.
Goodman has freshman guard John Wall going No. 1 overall, followed by freshman center DeMarcus Cousins at No. 13 and junior forward Patrick Patterson at No. 18.
And that’s just next year’s draft. Imagine how many players totally on next year’s team will eventually get a good look in a future NBA Draft. I think we’ll see Darius Miller, Daniel Orton and Eric Bledsoe on future mock drafts sometime in the future.
It goes without saying, this team is loaded.
Here’s what Goodman has to say about Wall, Cousins and Patterson:
1. John Wall, 6-3 ½, 193, PG, Fr., Kentucky: He's super-athletic, extremely quick and is big and strong. Maybe a bigger version of Derrick Rose and should be the top pick in next year's draft.
13. DeMarcus Cousins, 6-10, 245, C, Fr., Kentucky: He's got some crazy in him on the court, but he is big, strong and athletic. Big guys like this are hard to find.
18. Patrick Patterson, 6-8, 225, PF, Jr., Kentucky: Not sure if he improved his draft stock by returning. In fact, with all the big guys, my take is he would have gone higher this year.
The Cal profiles keep rolling in
Posted at 6:01 p.m. EDT – Eric Lindsey, UK Media Relations
Before I leave for the day (by the way, sorry for the lack of update – had a meeting and was working on a side project), wanted to drop a couple of links for you loyal readers and followers.
The Pittsburgh Tribune-Review has the latest profile on head coach John Calipari worth reading. One of the better features I’ve read on Calipari since he’s been here (disregard the misspelling of one Billy “Gillespie”). The story talks about how Cal is living his dream while remembering his roots. I recommend clicking over for those of you who can’t get enough of Coach Cal.
Also, according to the comical but always informative guys over at Kentucky Sports Radio, former Kentucky guard Ramel Bradley has signed with French Pro A team JDA Dijon this week. Bradley averaged 15 a game for Croatia last year (24 per game in Euro Challenge), according to KSR. Best of luck “Smooth.”
Horn: SEC best conference in the country
Posted at 1:31 p.m. EDT – Eric Lindsey, UK Media Relations
Some quick notes and quotes to wrap up the rest of the Southeastern Coaches Teleconference:
Cal’s first SEC Coaches Teleconference
Posted at 12:03 p.m. EDT – Eric Lindsey, UK Media Relations
Men’s basketball head coach John Calipari participated in his first Southeastern Conference Coaches Teleconference on Monday and, as usual, he had plenty to say. Like we did during the regular season, we’ll have a complete rundown of what Calipari had to say.
I’ll also have a few comments from some of the other SEC coaches following this post in just a little bit.
College World Series rakes in record TV numbers
Posted at 11:35 a.m. EDT – Eric Lindsey, UK Media Relations
The 2009 College World Series was the most viewed and highest rated CWS in ESPN and ESPN2 history, including the best-of–three championship series between Southeastern Conference foe Louisiana State and Texas.
Overall, ESPN averaged 1,450,000 households, 1,928,000 viewers and a 1.5 rating throughout the CWS.
ESPN’s three championship series telecasts averaged 2,059,000 households, 2,762,000 total viewers and a 2.1 rating, making it the most viewed and highest rated series finale since the tournament expanded to the best-of-three format in 2003. The championship series produced three of ESPN’s top-four most viewed NCAA CWS telecasts ever.
UK hires new dance coach
Posted at 11:15 a.m. EDT – Eric Lindsey, UK Media Relations
Former UK cheerleader and Pom Squad member Dawn Duncan Walters has been hired as UK’s dance team coach, effective July 1.
Walters was a member of the Dance Cat team her freshman year before joing the cheerleading team for the remainder of her collegiate career. She was a part of UK's first two Universal Cheerleaders Association national titles in 1985 and 1987.
Walters continued her career with the Wildcats coaching the UK Danzers, a student organization, for eight years. Under Walters, the UK Danzers captured the 1995 National Dance Alliance Collegiate national championship.
The dance team is coming off a seventh-place finish at the 2009 College Cheerleading and Dance Team National Championships.
Posted at 10:27 a.m. EDT - Eric Lindsey, UK Media Relations
UK highlight: Eventually the two could be locked in a heated quarterback battle, but for now, freshman quarterbacks Morgan Newton and Ryan Mossakowski are inseparable, according to a story by Brett Dawson of the Louisville Courier-Journal.
Dawson reports that the freshman duo has done everything together, whether that is going to practice together, studying playbooks and film reviews, or attending class with one another.
Not a whole lot of opinion I can take out of a feature like this (good story though), other than say it's great to see the two working together instead of against each other. Inevitably, they're going to be locked in a quarterback battle for either the backup role or the starter's spot, but at this point they need to be focusing on improving and getting used to the system rather than going against one another.
And as far as the starting quarterback spot goes, fans should hope both of these guys push Mike Hartline for the job. That's not saying Hartline should or won't be the top signal caller, but the only way the Cats are going to get better under center this year is if UK makes some significant improvement at the quarterback position. Competition fosters improvement.
SEC highlight: This story comes from a couple of days ago, but I found it interesting that Alabama football wants its 21 vacated wins back and has taken the first step toward appealing the ruling by the NCAA.
The university will also contest penalties vacation the individual records of 15 athletes in men's tennis and men's and women's track.
To be honest, I'm not really sure what the reasoning is behind this. We all know that the vacated wins basically mean nothing. Sure, there are 21 less victories in the win column, but it hardly takes away from the success of the past or penalizes the future state of the program for its wrongdoings. In hindsight, it was a slap on the wrist for a violation that could have been more severe given the past violations.
Alabama has said it won't appeal other sanctions, most notably the three years probation for football and 15 other sports.
Bonus SEC highlight: The Big 12 is on the verge of surpassing the Southeastern Conference? Yeah, you’re probably thinking the same thing I am. Check out this story in the Dallas Morning News that says the Big 12 is ready to surpass the SEC.
National highlight: When Landon Donovan fired a goal into the back of net in the first half Sunday, it seemed like the United States was well on its way to making history for the second time in a week. Unfortunately, that didn't happen as Brazil fought back for three goals in the second half, defeating the U.S. 3-2 in the FIFA Confederations Cup finals. .
In a way, the game validated the upset of Spain. It proved that American soccer is indeed on the rise and that we, as a nation, should take pride in the world's greatest game and look forward to the World Cup next year. I can't argue with that.
At the same time, it was as big of a letdown for me as it was validation. I'm a firm believer that there is no consolation in a loss, so why should Sunday be any different? The U.S. had a two-goal lead and let the win go right through their legs.
I don't care how strong Brazil is, when you play not to lose, you generally do. Instead of attacking and pushing the issue - exactly what got the Americans into the finals - the U.S. caved in and tried to hold on. No matter what sport you're talking about, that strategy almost never works.
I'm not trying to be harsh on the national team or the sport. I love soccer - it's all I did as a child. For one, I'm extremely excited for the World Cup and this last week has restored my faith in American soccer. But I won't sugarcoat it when I say that the U.S. choked and let the biggest moment in our nation's soccer history slip past it. Here's hoping they learn from it.