March 2017 archive

Football season will not be the same without tailgate buddy Steve Wyatt

Steve Wyatt, front right. at the Hopewell tailgate.


Kentucky’s 2017 football season is just not going to be quite the same for me.

Nothing against coach Mark Stoops and his players, but it won’t be the same for me because of the passing of Steve Wyatt, 59, earlier this week.

Wyatt and his wife, Jennifer, were both huge UK fans and had been forever. How big — they even went to the coaches’ luncheon at the TaxSlayer Bowl in December.

They were also regulars at the game-day tailgate hosted by Dave Hopewell and his wife, Terri. That’s where I first met Steve and his wife.

MVP Willis scores 13 in Reese’s All-Star Game

PHOENIX – Awarded one final college game after a tremendous college career, Kentucky men’s basketball senior Derek Willis made the most of the of the opportunity Friday with a solid performance in the Reese’s College All-Star Game.

Willis recorded 13 points, a team-high eight rebounds, a block and a steal for the West Team in 21 minutes at the University of Phoenix Stadium, site of this year’s Final Four. Willis made 6 of 11 shots and was named the Reese’s Perfect Player from the West.

The East defeated the West 121-90 in the annual all-star game.

Frank Martin once worked as Miami bouncer

South Carolina plays Gonzaga Saturday night in the Final Four and Thursday South Carolina coach Frank Martin met with the media. He talked about his coaching background, work as a bouncer and a potential visit to the White House.

Q. Could you talk about your up bringing here and some of the things in your life that you think shaped you as a coach and your philosophy as a coach?
COACH MARTIN: Obviously Miami raised me. Miami solidified who I am as a human being and instilled the values that I live my life by. Shakey Rodriguez took a chance on a 15-year-old that wasn’t any good as a player, but for whatever reason he made me feel that I was good. And he instilled trust and belief in me and gave me an opportunity.

Guest post: Makenzie Cann shares part of her story to earn a scholarship at Kentucky

Makenzie Cann (Vicky Graff Photo)

Vaught’s Note: Kentucky sophomore Makenzie Cann wrote a terrific post for her blog and she gave me permission to share part of it here. Cann is an integrated strategic communications major and jokes she’s had plenty of experience writing press releases. However, she gave some great insights into her journey from Anderson County to Cincinnati to UK in her blog. Enjoy this portion.


Guest post: Is it time for more accountability for officials?

John Calipari (Jeff Houchin Photo)


With all the news lately about poor quality officiating in the NCAA Tournament and the culmination of poor officiating occurring in the UK-North Carolina game, it seems strange to me that referees are not held to the  same standard of accountability as the players and coaches.

You’ve seen the postgame press conferences with players and coaches. After a very difficult loss players are asked why they attempted to make a certain play that failed, what were they thinking when this play happened or that play was not executed correctly. Coaches have to explain why they used a certain defense, did not play a certain player or did or did not call a time out at a critical point in the game.

Guest post: Twitter comment led to UK fan getting a lot of unfavorable responses

Jay Bilas (Photo by Phil Ellsworth / ESPN Images)

Vaught’s Note: Janet Overstreet is a long-time UK basketball fan and grew up playing pick-up basketball with the boys because there was no girls basketball. She went to three UK games this year, including Senior Night, has already checked on 2018 NCAA sites and watched future Cats play in the McDonald’s All-American Game Wednesday. I asked her to share a Twitter experience she had this week — and she agreed.


Many of you are like me and enjoy being on social media to interact with others, especially about our UK sports teams. 

Guest post: Is John Calipari an underachiever? No.

John Calipari (Vicky Graff Photo)

By KEITH PEEL, Contributing Writer

UK Men’s Basketball Ranked No. 1 All-Time Program by AP

LEXINGTON, Ky. – The “greatest tradition in the history of college basketball” and the nation’s all-time leader in wins and NCAA Tournament victories has a new descriptor it can add to its storied name: the best all-time team in college basketball.

That’s according to the Associated Press.

The AP, using a formula of its all-time polls, determined Wednesday that UK is the top program in the sport, ranking UK ahead of bluebloods North Carolina, Duke, UCLA and Kansas – in that order.

Metzger and Rainwater Double to Push UK Past Northern Kentucky

HIGHLAND HEIGHTS, Ky. – In a tight midweek affair, the No. 16 Kentucky softball team eked out a 2-1 road win on Wednesday afternoon, scoring the game-winning run in the top of the seventh to down the Northern Kentucky Norse in front of over 300 people at Grein Stadium.

With the game tied 1-1 in the top of the seventh inning, Rachael Metzger led off the inning with a double off the wall in left field, which would turn out to be the game-winning run in the form of pinch runner Brynlee Bigelow. Bigelow scored on a double by Sarah Rainwater with one out to score the winning run.

Guest post: One decision can have a huge impact on the college basketball landscape

Malik Monk (Vicky Graff Photo)


Did you ever think about how some decisions can seem insignificant to most people but can come back to have major ramifications in certain areas of life?

Take for instance the decision of a high school student from a small town in Arkansas deciding where he will go to college. Let’s take Malik Monk as an example. He had to make a difficult choice between attending a university in his home state of Arkansas or go out-of-state to attend college. A lot of high school seniors do that each year. It is a difficult choice for the student and his family but not a significant issue for the general public.