PGA Tour event to be held in Nicholasville July 16-22

J.B. Holmes shot 67 at the PGA Championship this year. He could be playing in a PGA event in Nicholasville in July.

NICHOLASVILLE, Kentucky (October 18, 2017) – With new host facility Keene Trace Golf Club serving as the backdrop and Kentucky Governor Matt Bevin heading a delegation of state and local dignitaries who joined PGA TOUR executive Andy Pazder, it was announced today that the 2018 Barbasol Championship will become Kentucky’s first PGA TOUR tournament in decades, come next July 16-22.

UK-Morehead State Exhibition to Raise Funds for Disaster Relief

Misty and Preston Spradlin with their son. (Morehead State Photo)

LEXINGTON, Ky. – In light of recent disasters around the country, UK Athletics will play a small part in helping those affected by adding a third men’s basketball exhibition game to Kentucky’s 2017-18 schedule. The NCAA has granted a special waiver for the Wildcats to host Morehead State.

UK will host the Eagles – coached by former Kentucky staff member Preston Spradlin – for the inaugural “Kentucky Cares Classic” on Oct. 30 at 7 p.m. in Rupp Arena to raise funds for those affected by the devastating hurricanes in Florida and Puerto Rico and wildfires in California.

Mullen says Stoops has built program in a similar way to what he did

Mark Stoops (Vicky Graff Photo)

By LARRY VAUGHT

Last year in Lexington when Kentucky needed a game-winning field goal from Austin MacGinnis to beat Mississippi State, he delivered. He did the same later against Louisville and almost did against Florida this year.

State coach Dan Mullen has noticed UK’s recent ability to win close games.

“Mark (Stoops) had done a good job. It looks a lot like how we built our program. Getting guys to believe and they play really hard and then putting them in a system where they can be successful,” Mullen said as he looked ahead to Saturday’s game against UK in Starkville.

Mullen calls UK a “huge challenge” for Mississippi State on Saturday

Stephen Johnson (Vicky Graff Photo)

By LARRY VAUGHT

Kentucky takes a 5-1 mark into Saturday afternoon’s game at Mississippi State coming off its bye week. Mississippi State coach Dan Mullen’s team beat BYU last week and he warns that the Bulldogs have a stiff test facing them.

“This year we ended up playing the two top teams in the SEC East. That rotates, so that just happens sometimes with scheduling. Obviously, it is a huge challenge against an excellent football team. They are a play away really from being undefeated and a Top 25 team easily nationally coming in here. It will be a great challenge for us,” Mullen said.

Dollywood’s LumiNights a different and enjoyable experience

Dollywood LumiNights (Larry Vaught Photo)

By LARRY VAUGHT

PIGEON FORGE, Tenn. — Sometimes it’s nice not to act your age.

I did that Tuesday at Dollywood when my wife and I went to Dollywood’s Harvest Festival. Actually as terrific as that event always is thanks to the Southern gospel music, the real attraction for this 65-year-old guy this year was the Great Pumpkin LumiNights.

We arrived mid-afternoon because we knew when dusk hit, the illuminated pumpkins that had been hand carved were going to be spectacular to see. They were, too, with lights everywhere.

UK’s Josh Allen Named AP and Sports Illustrated Second-Team Midseason All-American

Josh Allen. (Photo by Chet White | UK Athletics)

LEXINGTON, Ky. – Junior linebacker Josh Allen has been named a second-team defense midseason All-American by The Associated Press and Sports Illustrated it was announced today. He also was a first-team midseason All-Southeastern Conference selection by The All-American.

Allen, a native of Montclair, New Jersey, has been a force to be reckoned with for the Wildcats (5-1, 2-1 SEC) this season as he leads the league and ranks third nationally in sacks per game (1.08). He also ranks eighth in the SEC in tackles for loss per game (1.25). On the season, he has totaled 35 tackles (fourth on the team) to go along with a team-high 7.5 tackles for loss and 6.5 sacks, three QB hurries, two forced fumbles and a pass breakup.

Diallo Named to Jerry West Award Preseason Watch List

Hamidou Diallo (Vicky Graff Photo)

SPRINGFIELD, Mass. – There was a reason the Big Blue Nation exuberated excitement when Hamidou Diallo announced his return to Kentucky for his freshman campaign. Diallo, who is expected to be a major contributor for the Wildcats, was selected to the Jerry West Award watch list, which recognizes the country’s best shooting guard.

Malik Monk was among the early favorites for the award last season. After averaging 19.8 points per game and claiming Southeastern Conference Freshman of the Year honors, he became UK’s first-ever recipient of the award.

Why was Charles Bassey not part of recruiting group at Big Blue Madness?

Charles Bassey

By LARRY VAUGHT

When it comes to recruiting, Kentucky coach John Calipari has a plan that always seems to bring a highly-ranked recruiting class to Kentucky.

He had a bevy of high school stars a the recent Big Blue Madness. However, what puzzles me more is one player that was not there — 2019 prospect Charles Bassey. He’s a consensus top five player in the 2019 class and now plays for Aspire Academy in Louisville.

Yet there seems to be little or no contact between UK and Bassey even though he’s now playing in the Bluegrass after transferring from a St. Anthony’s in Texas where he played last year along with three teammates.

Stoops says Nick Haynes “very helpful” to teammates

Nick Haynes. (Vicky Graff Photo)

By LARRY VAUGHT

Going into Saturday’s game at Mississippi State, coach Mark Stoops likes the offensive line mix that now includes redshirt freshman center Drake Jackson. That has allowed Bunchy Stallings to move back to guard where he played last year.

But Jackson got his chance to play because senior Nick Haynes has had trouble maintaining his weight because of his battle with diabetes.

“I think Nick’s situation and his health is a big key to us as we move forward trying to get his weight and his strength back up,” Stoops said. “I had the opportunity to see Nick this weekend and spend some time with him Saturday afternoon and he looked rested.

SEC Network Returns to Nashville for Extensive SEC Basketball Media Days Coverage

For the second consecutive year, SEC Network will have a full set on site at SEC Basketball Media Days. SEC Now and The Paul Finebaum Show are live both days – October 18 and 19 – with a total of 15 hours of SEC Network coverage for the men’s and women’s basketball preview event. The two-day media showcase tips off more than 170 collegiate basketball games scheduled for the SEC Network this year.

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