Most Recent Posts
- This year John Calipari says the SEC Tournament is important for UK’s mojo
- High school coordinator on UK WR signee Blake Bone: “He doesn’t get caught”
- Kentucky big man Julius Randle: “We don’t know what we’ve got to do but we’ve got to get going”
- UK coach John Calipari: “I didn’t think we had any kind of fight” to start the game
- Miami Heat sign former UK standout DeAndre Liggins to 2nd 10-day contract
- 2014 SEC Tournament Bracket: Cats to play 7 p.m. Friday
- Photos from Kentucky’s 84-65 loss at Florida
- Kentucky Wildcats TV: UK players Julius Randle and Dakari Johnson talk after the loss to Florida
By LARRY VAUGHT
Why was John Calipari so upset with the officiating at South Carolina that he got two technical fouls and ejected from the game?
“You would have to ask him,” said assistant coach John Robic, who also added that he did not know why Calipari did not come to the media room and he came because he was told to.
It was Robic, not Calipari, who came to the media room after UK’s shocking loss to South Carolina coming after UK fell in overtime at home to Arkanas Thursday.
“I realize he is not here,” Robic said. “Guess a call didn’t go our way here and there. But nothing to do with that (on why UK lost). It was our team’s performance. As coaches and players, we have to own up to it.”
Robic was asked if a freshman-dominated team — how often has Calipari said this is the nation’s youngest team — needed the head coach on the court for guidance and not in the locker room the final 10 minutes of play because he lost his poise.
“I am not going to answer that,” Robic said.
So how are the players?
“The game just got over. I am sure they are disappointed and mad and upset,” Robic said.
University of Kentucky sports fans can plan to enjoy plenty of baseball, softball and football action on the UK campus during “Big Blue Weekend” April 25-27.
The Blue/White Spring Football Game will be held Saturday, April 26, at 3:30 p.m. at Commonwealth Stadium. The Blue/White Game will be conclude spring practice and will be the fans’ first look at the 2014 Wildcats. Tickets will be free of charge and a distribution plan will be announced later.
The Kentucky baseball team will play host to Ole Miss in a three-game series at Cliff Hagan Stadium. Friday’s game is set for 6:30 p.m., followed by 1 p.m. contests on Saturday and Sunday.
The softball series will be a matchup of teams currently ranked in the nation’s top 10 when Kentucky, currently ranked No. 7 in the country, takes on top-ranked Tennessee. The teams will tangle at 6 p.m. Friday and Saturday at John Cropp Stadium, followed by a 2 p.m. Sunday finale.
Single-game tickets for baseball and softball cost $5 for adults and $2 for age 6-18. UK students and persons age 5 and under are free.
Here is the composite scheduleof games for the weekend:
Friday, April 25
Softball vs. Tennessee, 6 p.m.
Baseball vs. Ole Miss, 6:30 p.m.
Saturday, April 26
Baseball vs. Ole Miss, 1 p.m.
Blue/White Spring Football Game, 3:30 p.m.
Softball vs. Tennessee, 6 p.m.
Sunday, April 27
Baseball vs. Ole Miss, 1 p.m.
Softball vs. Tennessee, 2 p.m.
UK Alumni Association to Host Tailgate Event at Blue/White Game as part of Alumni Weekend Activities
1:30 – 3:30 p.m., Commonwealth Stadium Red Lot near Gate 4 – $8 per person, $5 for UK Alumni Association members. Join fellow alumni and fans for food prior to the scrimmage. Enjoy music, games, and giveaways. Then head into Commonwealth Stadium to watch the Blue/White game.
2014 SEC Baseball Schedule
(all times Eastern)
Date Game Time Network
Saturday, March 15 Mississippi State at Georgia Noon FSN
Saturday, March 15 LSU at Vanderbilt 3:15 pm FSN
Friday, March 21 Vanderbilt at Mississippi State 7:30 pm CSS
Saturday, March 22 South Carolina at Kentucky 2:00 pm FSN
Saturday, March 22 Auburn at Tennessee 4:00 pm CSS
Saturday, March 22 Vanderbilt at Mississippi State 8:30 pm ESPNU
Thursday, March 27 Missouri at Auburn 7:30 pm ESPNU
Friday, March 28 LSU at Florida 7:30 pm CSS
Saturday, March 29 Missouri at Auburn 1:00 pm FSN
Saturday, March 29 Ole Miss at Alabama 7:00 pm CSS
Sunday, March 30 Kentucky at Vanderbilt 2:00 pm ESPNU
Thursday, April 3 South Carolina at Arkansas 8:00 pm ESPNU
Friday, April 4 Mississippi State at LSU 7:30 pm CSS
Saturday, April 5 Florida at Kentucky 1:00 pm FSN
Saturday, April 5 Vanderbilt at Tennessee 7:00 pm CSS
Saturday, April 5 Mississippi State at LSU 7:30 pm ESPNU
Sunday, April 6 Auburn at Ole Miss 2:30 pm CSS
Thursday, April 10 Tennessee at Georgia 7:30 pm ESPNU
Saturday, April 12 Arkansas at LSU 1:00 pm ESPN2
Saturday, April 12 Ole Miss at Mississippi St 4:00 pm FSN
Thursday, April 17 LSU at Ole Miss 7:30 pm ESPNU
Friday, April 18 Georgia at Florida 7:30 pm CSS
Saturday, April 19 LSU at Ole Miss 2:00pm FSN
Saturday, April 19 South Carolina at Auburn 5:00 pm CBSCSN
Sunday, April 20 Georgia at Florida 12:00 pm ESPNU
Sunday, April 20 Vanderbilt at Arkansas 1:00 pm ESPN
Sunday, April 20 South Carolina at Auburn 2:00 pm CSS
Thursday, April 24 Texas A&M at Mississippi State 7:30 pm ESPNU
Saturday, April 26 Missouri at Florida 12:00 pm FSN
Saturday, April 26 Ole Miss at Kentucky 1:00 pm CSS
Saturday, April 26 Alabama at South Carolina 2:00 pm ESPN
Saturday, April 26 Texas A&M at Mississippi State 3:15 pm FSN
Saturday, April 26 Georgia at Vanderbilt 4:00 pm CSS
Saturday, April 26 Tennessee at LSU 7:30 pm CST
Sunday, April 27 Alabama at South Carolina 1:00 pm ESPN
Thursday, May 1 Kentucky at Tennessee 7:30 pm ESPNU
Friday, May 2 Florida at Alabama 7:30 pm CSS
Saturday, May 3 Kentucky at Tennessee 12:00 pm FSN
Saturday, May 3 LSU at Texas A&M 1:00 pm ESPN2
Saturday, May 3 South Carolina at Georgia 1:00 pm CSS
Saturday, May 3 Arkansas at Ole Miss 3:15 pm FSN
Saturday, May 3 Mississippi State at Auburn 7:00 pm CSS
Sunday, May 4 LSU at Texas A&M 2:00 pm ESPNU
Sunday, May 4 Arkansas at Ole Miss 2:30 pm CSS
Thursday, May 8 Vanderbilt at Florida 8:30 pm ESPNU
Saturday, May 10 Vanderbilt at Florida 12:00 pm FSN
Saturday, May 10 Alabama at LSU 1:00 pm CSS
Saturday, May 10 Missouri at South Carolina 3:15 pm FSN
Saturday, May 10 Tennessee at Mississippi State 7:00 pm CSS
Saturday, May 10 Texas A&M at Arkansas 7:00 pm CST
Sunday, May 11 Alabama at LSU 2:00 pm CSS
Thursday, May 15 SEC Wildcard Game 7:30 pm ESPNU
Friday, May 16 Ole Miss at Texas A&M 8:00 pm ESPNU
Saturday, May 17 Florida at Tennessee 1:00 pm CSS
Saturday, May 17 LSU at Auburn 2:00 pm FSN
Saturday, May 17 Mississippi State at Alabama 4:00 pm CSS
By LARRY VAUGHT
Here is what Kentucky coach John Calipari had to say today on the SEC coaches teleconference about games against Mississippi and Mississippi State this week:
“You’re talking about two teams that have players that can break you down and score when they need to. Mississippi State was up four on us when they played us here and we kind of wore them down with a little bit of our depth, but I’m not sure we’ll be able to do that down there. Mississippi, Andy (Kennedy) has them playing so well. They’re running their stuff, they’re executing, they’re playing through the people they need to play through, they’re playing zone, they’re scrambling it up a little bit, and putting out a 1-3-1 (zone) and a little bit of half-court trap stuff. They’re doing great stuff. Both teams are being well-coached and both teams are in position to win games because of how they’re being coached and players are playing their roles well.”
Photos by Victoria Graff, and property of Schurz Communications, Inc., and vaughtsviews.com. All rights reserved; images may not be reprinted in print or online without permission of the owners. Reprinted images must be attributed to vaughtsviews.com and linked to the original site.
By LARRY VAUGHT
LEXINGTON — For weeks Kentucky coach John Calipari has been telling anyone who would listen — and even those who didn’t want to hear it — that sophomore Alex Poythress was playing the best he has at Kentucky.
Even if his numbers were not startling in games, Calipari praised his effort, intensity, conditioning, toughness and just about anything else you could imagine.
Well, Poythress made Calipari look like a genius here Tuesday night with his best performance since the start of his freshman campaign when he had four straight games of 20 or more points. He had 12 points (including seven straight), three rebounds and a block in just over six minutes of the second half to start a 21-7 run and put uK in control of a 68-51 win over Texas A&M.
He finished with a season-high 16 points (4-for-7 field goals, 8-for-9 free throws), five rebounds and two blocks in 25 minutes. He is now averaging 10.6 points per game in five Southeastern Conference games.
“He has been doing great in practice and it just carried over to games,” freshman Dakari Johnson, who had six points and seven rebounds in extended playing time because of the ongoing slump by Willie Cauley-Stein (one point, one rebound), said.
Poythress seemed to lose his confidence at times last season. That’s not the case now.
“I am real confident,” he said. “Right now I am working hard and just trying to bring energy off the bench and help the team win. I am just working hard in practice to make plays and then trying to do the same thing in games.”
Two sequences defined the night for Poythress. First, he blocked a shot, sprinted the court, got the ball, got fouled and scored. He made the free throw, too. A short bit later he got the ball outside the lane and seemed to fly through the air to throw down a dunk that had teammate Julius Randle screaming and UK fans going berserk. It was that good — and that powerful — and the beast-like performance Calipari had sensed was coming from Poythress.
“That was a good stretch for me and the team,” Poythress said. “We kind of stretched the lead out then and we played great defense at that same time.”
He said he really couldn’t describe the dunk.
“I was just running down and trying to get the ball to the rim,” Poythress said.
However, he did notice the way teammates reacted not only to that dunk, but also to his three-point play.
“I did notice on the way back to the bench after the three-point play,” Poythress said. “It’s good to do something everyone can enjoy.”
Texas A&M coach Billy Kennedy saw Poythress, who is from Clarksville, Tenn., play “a bunch” when he was coaching at Murray State and said then he liked his character and talent.
“He was dominant physically. I am not surprised. He is a really good player,” Kennedy said. “He’s one of their more upper class guys, and he played like it. I thought him and Randle were just physical, much more so than we were.”
Calipari emphasized again how “proud” he was of Poythress, a player he often had to criticize last season for his uninspired play.
“I am really proud of Alex and what he has been able to do in practice and now you all are starting to see it,” Calipari said. “He made plays that were like, ‘How did he make that play’ and that’s how we got a little gap. A lot of it was just him.
“What you are seeing is what I am seeing in practice. He is just dominating. One play he tried to throw the lob (to a teammate) when I wish he had taken it because there was just him and one guy. He can do something with the ball with just one guy. But he was good.”
He’s becoming consistently good and setting the tone physically. Twice he ripped rebounds away from opponents just like he did with that sensational rebound late in the overtime loss at Arkansas. He didn’t do that last year when he often played tentative instead of the aggressive way he did in high school that made him one of the nation’s top recruits.
“Mentally, he thinks he’s going to kill you, so he will. Last year that is not how he was thinking and he was not in shape to do it,” Calipari said.
Calipari often talks about players “owning” their performance — a phrase he’s aimed at Cauley-Stein numerous times during his horrific three-game slump that landed him on the bench to start the second half.
Poythress obviously has embraced that challenged from his coach.
“It means you put in extra work … good things will happen to good people,” Poythress said. “You get what you give. If you don’t work hard, bad things will happen. If you do work hard, good things will happen.”
Just like they have been for Poythress in recent weeks.
By LARRY VAUGHT
PADUCAH — He played with a sprained wrist and had to leave the game briefly in the first quarter when he cut his tongue, but Chicago point guard Tyler Ulis thought having 14 points, 10 assists and six steals in an 80-63 win for Marian Catholic over Lausanne Collegiate at Mustang Madness was a typical game for him Saturday.
Not only did University of Kentucky fans turn out to see Ulis, but so did UK coach John Calipari and assistants Orlando Antigua and Kenny Payne.
“My wrist has been banged up, so I’ve been getting in the lane and finding my teammates, and they’ve been playing very well,” said Ulis after Saturday’s game.
He said having Calipari there to watch him in person for the first time since he signed with UK in November added no pressure.
“I’ve played in front of him a couple times before. There’s no pressure, especially knowing I’m already signed to his school,” the 5-9 guard said. “You have to play no matter who is in the crowd watching. You still have to go out there and try to get a win.
“The fans are a little wowed by my passing, a lot of oohs and ahhs, especially lately because my teammates have been playing so well. Like I said everybody is stepping up, and we’re winning pretty big.”
Question: Do you think Kentucky has the best recruiting class in the country?
Ulis: “Yeah, I believe we’re the best recruiting class in the country. I think we’re No. 2 on ESPN, but at the end of the day, I still think we’re best.”
Question: What will it be like when you have 7-footers to finish your passes to the block next season?
Ulis: “That’s going to be great. I haven’t played with anybody that big or as great as Devin (Booker). He’s the best shooter in the country. Karl (Towns) and Trey (Lyles) are two of the best post players in the country. That’s going to be great. That’s going to be a fun experience.”
Question: How has your season been going?
Ulis: “It’s been going great. We’re 12-1. Everybody has been playing their role, doing their job. We haven’t come out and saying we’re better than people just because we’ve had success. Everybody still comes out and plays hard and tries to win.”
Question: What’s it like being a Kentucky commit and everybody knows that going into the games?
Ulis: “Everybody has a target on my back right now. I had the target on everybody else’s back going through the summer, and now everybody is looking at me like, ‘He’s going to Kentucky. We need to beat him.’ It’s good, but at the same time it helps me because I don’t have to worry about which college I’m going to, and I don’t have to worry about the media (talking about recruiting). I just can focus on playing.”
Question: Is there any point guard you watch that you try to mimic?
Ulis: “I watch Chris Paul. That’s my favorite player, and I think he’s the best point guard in the game right now. I like how he gets his teammates involved and doesn’t force the issue or try to score too much. He makes everybody happy first, and then if he has to score, that’s what he does.”
Question: Did you meet and play with him at his camp?
Ulis: “I got to play him one-on-one. He beat me 3-2. I thought I could have had him because I went up 2-0 at the beginning. He let me shoot a couple shots, and I made them. Then I did a move and the ball just went in and out, so he beat me.”
Question: What do you think you’ve got to improve upon at the next level?
Ulis: “Just get stronger, increase my range and just keep working at my game.”
Question: How important is your 3-point shot?
Ulis: “It’s very important because I have to be able to knock down a long-range shot at my size consistently because people are going to try to sag off of me. If they can’t sag off me, then it’ll be easier for me to get in the lane.”
Question: How do you see the Kentucky offense working next year?
Ulis: “It fits me perfectly because I like to get in the lane. I like to drive and kick, and with Devin on the wing with me, he’s going to knock down most of the shots. We have a 7-footer (Towns), and a 6-10 guy (Lyles) who can shoot 3’s, so the floor is going to be spread out. I’m pretty sure they’re going to have mismatches with bigs trying to match up with them, especially Karl. He’s so versatile. He can step out on the wing or in the post. We’re just going to have a great team.”
Question: How familiar are you with Dominique Hawkins?
Ulis: “I haven’t seen him play much, except from the Kentucky games that I’ve seen him come in and out. But I’ve heard he’s pretty good. Didn’t he win Mr. Basketball in Kentucky? So it’s going to be nice.
Question: Are you friends with Louisville signee Quentin Snider of Ballard?
Ulis: “Me and Q. grew up playing against each other, playing against each other back and forth when we were younger and he played for the Kentucky Tar Heels. We’ve just been going at it for a long time, but we’re close friends. We actually roomed together at the Chris Paul camp. I knew he was going to go back to Louisville because that was his dream school. It’s great that we’re still going to be playing each other like we always have. We’re kind of the same player. We get in the lane. We shoot the ball from deep and get our teammates involved, so some of the same schools wanted us, and we both went to where is best for us.”
Freshman guard Aaron Harrison was named the Southeastern Conference’s Freshman of the Week following UK’s victory over Belmont. The honor is the second of the Richmond, Texas, native’s career.
Harrison poured in 23 points in the Wildcats’ 93-80 victory over Belmont on Saturday. Eighteen of those points came after halftime as UK outscored the Bruins 52-37 following the break. Harrison has now topped the 20-point plateau in consecutive games and four times in his young career.
The 6-6 guard also added a career-high seven assists, a mark that matches his brother, Andrew, for the most of any player this season. He also hauled in six rebounds in the win which was one board shy of matching his career high.
Harrison sunk 8-of-11 free throws. The 11 attempts equaled a career-best mark. For the season, Harrison has poured in 181 points which is second on the team and a total that already ranks 51st among all freshmen in program history for a first-year player.
Kentucky will enjoy a week off from competition before hitting the hardwood again on Saturday, Dec. 28. UK will face in-state rival and No. 6 Louisville in Rupp Arena at 4 p.m. ET. The game will air live on CBS.
Photos by Clay Jackson, and property of Schurz Communications, Inc., and vaughtsviews.com. All rights reserved; images may not be reprinted in print or online without permission of the owners. Reprinted images must be attributed to vaughtsviews.com and linked to the original site.