Category Archive: UK Hoops

ESPN Remembers Legendary Coach Pat Summitt

ESPN joins the world in mourning the loss of legendary head coach Pat Summitt, who passed away early Tuesday morning. Paying tribute to Summitt’s 38-year coaching career, ESPNU will air the film Nine for IX: Pat XO, Tennessee’s SEC Tournament Championship wins from 2005-2011 and the 1998 NCAA Division I Women’s Basketball National Championship title game. ESPN Classic will be the home of Tennessee’s National Championship title games, where Summitt led the Lady Vols to national titles in 1996, 1997, 1998, 2007 and 2008. SportsCenter will continue to pay tribute to Summitt throughout the day, speaking with loved ones and those she inspired.

Mitchell, Barnhart Offer Condolences After Pat Summitt’s Passing

LEXINGTON, Ky. – Pat Summitt, who for 38 seasons led the Tennessee women’s basketball program and changed the face of college athletics in the process, passed away on Tuesday at the age of 64.

Kentucky women’s basketball coach Matthew Mitchell started his coaching career as a graduate assistant under Summitt at Tennessee.

Janee Thompson Signs to Play Overseas for SV Halle Lions

Janee Thompson hugged coach Matthew Mitchell after a NCAA win. (Vicky Graff Photo)

Janee Thompson hugged coach Matthew Mitchell after a NCAA win. (Vicky Graff Photo)

LEXINGTON, Ky. – Former University of Kentucky guard Janee Thompson will start her professional basketball career overseas as she has signed with the Basketball SV Halle Lions in Germany, it was announced recently.

“I look forward to playing for my new team as I start my transition from college to professional basketball and begin to lay the foundation for my career,” Thompson said in a release by the club.

The native of Chicago, played in 119 games with 82 starts during her four-year career at Kentucky, averaging 8.6 points, 2.9 assists and 1.0 steals per game.

Veteran Lil Dunn joins Matthew Mitchell’s staff

LEXINGTON, Ky. – With over 40 years of coaching experience, including nearly three decades in the collegiate ranks and a Women’s National Basketball Association championship title to her name, Lin Dunn has been named an assistant coach with the Kentucky women’s basketball team, Matthew Mitchell announced Tuesday.

“I could not be more excited to get the chance to work every day with one of my greatest mentors and dearest friends in Lin Dunn,” Mitchell said. “When you think about those that helped paved the way for women’s sports, Lin Dunn is one of those names that comes to your mind. She has helped me become the coach and person that I am today and I am forever grateful. With our staff now complete, it’s time for us to turn the page and take this program to new heights.”

Four-star prospect Jaida Roper signs with Kentucky

LEXINGTON, Ky. – University of Kentucky women’s basketball head coach Matthew Mitchell has announced that Jaida Roper, a 5-foot-7 guard out of Houston High School in Memphis, Tenn., has joined the program and will be a true freshman on the 2016-17 roster.

“We are so excited for Jaida to become a Wildcat. She is a high-character person, an exciting basketball player and a very hard worker,” Mitchell said. “Jaida will be a great fit in our program and I look forward to helping her develop as a person, a student and a player.”

Niya Butts officially added to Matthew Mitchell’s staff

LEXINGTON, Ky. – Niya Butts (pronounced NIGH-ya), the former head coach at the University of Arizona, who prior to that stint served on Mickie DeMoss’ and Matthew Mitchell’s coaching staffs at Kentucky, will return to UK as an assistant coach, Mitchell announced Saturday.

“I have thought a lot the last few weeks about chemistry within our coaching staff and one name that I kept coming back to was Niya Butts,” Mitchell said. “I have worked with Niya as an assistant and was fortunate enough to have her on staff in my first year at Kentucky. I have said this before and still have complete confidence that Niya helps balance me out in a way that will positively impact our program. I love the way our staff is starting to take shape and I am excited about our future.”

Matthew Mitchell: What I Have Learned

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-1By MATTHEW MITCHELL

Since the last time I spoke publicly on April 27, much has happened in our program. I have to be honest, there have been some very, very difficult moments these past two weeks. Players transferring, recruits decommitting and a complete turnover of our coaching staff was not what I had hoped for nor expected at the end of the 2015-16 season. All of that happening put our remaining players, our remaining staff, the media and our loyal and devoted fans in a state of confusion.

Former UK star Samari Walker honored for play overseas

LEXINGTON, Ky. – Former University of Kentucky women’s basketball star Samarie Walker has been honored for her strong play overseas this season in Sweden and Lithuania as she has been named the Eurobasket.com All-Swedish Damligan Forward of the Year, it was announced recently.

On top of being named the best forward in the league, Walker was also named to the Eurobasket.com All-Swedish Damligan First Team as a forward. She was one of only five players to earn first-team honors.

UK Athletics surpasses 3.0 GPA for 8th straight semester

Mitch Barnhart (Wade Upchurch Photo)

Mitch Barnhart (Wade Upchurch Photo)

LEXINGTON, Ky. – What was once an ambition has now become an expectation.

For the eighth consecutive semester, UK Athletics has posted a cumulative department-wide grade-point average of 3.0 or better.

UK Athletics’ scholarship students combined for a GPA of 3.157 this spring, nearly identical to the 3.149 GPA posted in the fall.

“We have a group of graduating seniors who have contributed to a 3.0 GPA in every semester they’ve spent at Kentucky,” Athletics Director Mitch Barnhart said. “That’s an achievement by our students that should not be overlooked. I want to congratulate those students and everyone who supports them for making that possible.”

Big Blue Madness, exhibition dates announced

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-1LEXINGTON, Ky. – It’s never too early to get excited about next season.

“Next season” officially begins Oct. 14 with the annual spectacle of Big Blue Madness, introducing the 2016-17 men’s and women’s basketball teams. Madness will begin at 7 p.m. in Rupp Arena and will air on the SEC Network.

That’s just the beginning of the exhibition slate, which will encompass Madness, the Blue-White Scrimmage and UK’s first two exhibition games vs. Clarion and Asbury. All events and games are scheduled for 7 p.m. starts. All four events will also be televised live by the SEC Network.

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