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October 27th, 2016

The 14 Best Moments from “SEC Inside” on Kentucky/Mississippi State


This morning, I sat down and watched “SEC Inside,” the SEC Network’s behind-the-scenes look at Kentucky’s win over Mississippi State. I knew it would probably be good because the end of the game was so exciting, but man, what a way to start your day. If you haven’t had a chance to see it yet, check SEC Network for a replay, or watch it on YouTube thanks to our friends at UK Basketball Live.

The dramatic voice-over and horse racing metaphors were a bit much, but there were several moments that I felt genuinely portrayed how this team has come together to fight for Mark Stoops. Fourteen of them, in fact.

1. The emergence of Benny Snell

You could argue that this team really started to turn things around when Benny Snell started playing. Snell had zero carries vs. Southern Miss or Florida, and even though he had four touchdowns in Kentucky’s romp over New Mexico State, I think you could argue he really broke out vs. South Carolina. Snell’s go-ahead touchdown midway through the fourth quarter helped the Cats knock out the Gamecocks, and “SEC Inside” honored that big moment with some glorious slow-mo footage of Benny bouncing off runners and into the end zone. They also showed his big touchdown vs. Mississippi State, and this montage of him yelling afterwards is great:


“You try arm tackling that guy, you’re gonna bounce off those thighs.”

2. “Go get your damn respect”

One of Stoops’ latest talking points is the importance of game week prep (it’s the new “gotta get back to fundamentals”) and “SEC Inside” featured a look inside the team meeting room at the training center the Wednesday before the Mississippi State game.

“People have been kicking dirt on you for a while, right? Go get your damn respect. Take care of business today. Prepare today to take care of Saturday.”

3. The chemistry between Stephen Johnson and Jeff Badet

Jeff Badet had his breakout game vs. Mississippi State with a season-high seven catches for 139 yards and two touchdowns, thanks in part to his budding rapport with Stephen Johnson. “SEC Inside” touched on that in their footage of Kentucky’s game prep last week.

4. Stoops’ pregame pep talk

We’ve heard about Mark Stoops’ pregame pep talks, but they never fail to get me riled up.

5. JoJo Kemp with the American flag


Almost as good as Matt Elam with the Kentucky flag.

6. The shirtless kid punching


Remember how cold it was that night? This kid is a beast.

7. Stephen Johnson’s hurdle in slow mo

Never gets old.

8. “Play with some damn urgency. Let’s go!”

After Mississippi State scored to go up 24-20, Mark Stoops came over to the sideline and screamed, “Play with some damn urgency, let’s go!” before giving his defense the death stare:

9. The guy in the Jared Lorenzen costume somehow made the cut


You may remember this Jared Lorenzen superfan from “SEC Nation” last year and this year. I loved that they showed him at an especially dramatic and pivotal moment, right after Jeff Badet’s touchdown to put UK up 27-24. Sadly, they did not show his fake stomach.

10. “IT’S GOOD!!!!”

11. The team running on the field and putting MacGinnis on their shoulders

12. Boom crying

I talked about this on my podcast with Freddie today, but if you don’t tear up a little watching Boom Williams cry after the game, you don’t fully appreciate what he’s gone through. Boom essentially quit the team last year and was part of the “locker room divide” that haunted that squad, had a major elbow injury and surgery, and then his sister died over the summer. That’s a lot for anyone to deal with, but a 19-20 year old kid? Watching him let all of his emotions out to Austin MacGinnis and Mark Stoops gave me all the feels.

13. Stoops’ victory walk


He certainly earned it.

14. And his postgame speech

Now, let’s go beat Missouri and make some more memories.

Wendy’s KSR Top 10 Tweets of the Day


The one and only Wendy’s Baconator is a meaty masterpiece in its
own right. Composed of six strips of thick cut, applewood-smoked bacon; cooked in an oven. Two quarter-pound patties* of fresh, never-frozen, North American beef raised close it never sees a freezer. Only Wendy’s has the fresh beef and thick bacon to give you a hamburger worthy of the name Baconator.

You can be a part of Wendy’s KSR Top 10 Tweets by using hashtags like #KSR #BBN or #KSRtop10. You can also nominate tweets by mentioning them with the hashtag. If we like what we see, it could be posted the next day. Now. On to the tweets:


#10 Brad Anderson

Are we sure AD is human?


#9 Bucky Small Hooves

I don’t think that Drake deserves to be in the top 1,000 college basketball players.


#8 Spencer Reed

When there’s more UK players in the NBA than there is on the actual team.


#7 Tyler Young

How symbolic.


#6 Louis Phil

We don’t need his head getting any bigger, so no.


#5 Richard Paul



#4 Little Man’s Nest

Talent means nothing, his name is the only reason he’s good.


#3 Wes Ledford

Rich Brooks’ next tweet: “Pic of uk football team eating my tomatoes”


#2 Tony Ray

Ugh, Booker, don’t you know to respect your elders?


#1 Scott Darst

I think Rick is a better looking clown, Crean just acts like one.




Make Your Plans to Watch the Cats in the Bahamas

Cancel all your plans for the last weekend of November. It’s time to book your trip to watch UK play in the Bahamas. The Cats will take on Arizona State University at Atlantis, Paradise Island on November 28, 2016 in the first annual Atlantis Showcase in the Bahamas. The game will be played at the resort’s 3,800-seat temporary arena located in the Imperial Ballroom.

Book now from $199 a night and discounted tickets from $99.  Seriously, do it.  You do NOT want to miss any of the action.  Call 1-800-Atlantis or visit for more information.  There is another way you can get to the Atlantis Showcase.


The person with the best impression will win one trip for two to the Atlantis resort for 4 days and 3 nights with transportation and two VIP tickets to the game included. In the meantime, watch tonight’s episode of Hey Kentucky! with Chip Cosby after the jump.


One Kentucky Kid’s Day was Made by Stephen Johnson and Ryan Timmons

Joseph Goins doesn’t have it easy, but his day was made when he saw Stephen Johnson and Ryan Timmons walk through his hospital door.

After finishing practice, Johnson joined Timmons to see the 11-year old from his hometown who’s battling bone cancer at UK Hospital.  “He enjoyed every minute of it, ” his father James said on Facebook.  “By you all doing that it put a smile on his face and I think it boosted his spirits up. So again thank you all from the bottom of our hearts.”

Just like these Wildcats, keep fighting till the battle is won, Joseph.

KSR Preps Preview : Week Eleven


(@_rayquan) | IG

KSR Preps Game of the Week

Belfry (8-1) vs. Johnson Central (9-0)

The High School Football season has flown by as the last week of the regular season has already arrived. Most teams already know their round 1 opponent so this week will be used to gain momentum and fine tune the small details heading into the playoffs.

Two of the best teams in the state face off this week as Johnson Central hosts the defending 3A state champions, Belfry. These teams are very similar in their offensive and defensive philosophies, with both utilizing the triple option extremely effectively due to disciplined offensive lines and balanced backfields.

Johnson Central has rolled through its schedule this season outscoring their 9 opponents by an impressive score of 407-85. Johnson Central averages 330 rushing yards per game while racking up 2,971 total rushing yards through 9 games.

Sophomore running back Joe Jackson leads the Golden Eagles with 1,186 yards and 17 touchdowns on just 93 carries. Senior fullback Gunner Slone has added 363 yards and 4 touchdowns on 65 carries. Johnson Central rarely passes the ball but Senior Geordan Blanton has caught 9 passes for 302 yards and 7 touchdowns averaging 33.6 yards a catch.

Belfry’s only blemish to their 2016 season is a tough 45-20 loss to Knoxville Catholic,TN. Since that loss the Pirates have outscored their 4 opponents 180-21 including a big 35-21 win against West Virginia’s #4 ranked team, Cabell Midland.

Belfry is the highest scoring team in class 3A averaging over 40 points a game while only allowing 14 points per game. The Pirates are lead by 6’5 300 pound guard Cole Bentley, a Louisville commit, and 6’7 309 pound senior tackle Austin Dotson who is committed to UK. The impact that these two have on each and every game that Belfry plays in is immeasurable.

I expect senior quarterback Noah Corbett to have a major impact on this game, he must remain patient in his reads while also having the confidence to make a big play happen when it is there.

Much of this game will be determined by the coaching staff’s of both teams as they must decide weather they want to rest any of their starters in preparation for the playoffs.

Personally I am excited to experience the atmosphere at Johnson Central tomorrow night and hope for a competitive contest.

Eli’s Pick – This one could really go either way as both teams have secured home field advantage in the playoffs. Pride is on the line tomorrow night in Paintsville, and I just can’t pick against the defending state champions, I’ll take Belfry 24-10.

Other Notable Games

Scott County (7-2) vs. Covington Catholic (7-2) 

Head Coach Eddie Eviston is enjoying an impressive season in his second year as the head guy at Cov Cath. The Colonels hope to gain major momentum heading into the playoffs by picking up a win against 6A powerhouse Scott County.

Tates Creek (5-4) vs. Ashland Blazer (6-3)

Ashland saw its 6 game winning streak snapped last week by Johnson Central in a 43-6 beating. Who knows if Ashland will play their starters this week after last year’s game against Tates Creek when they lost two of their best players to season ending injuries. Tates Creek is hoping to bounce back after a pounding last week at the hands of Walker Wood and Lafayette.

Bowling Green (9-0) vs. McCracken County (7-2)

Bowling Green has been unstoppable this season as they’ve outscored their opponents 444-61 and have pitched shutouts in 5 of their last 6 games. Many are expecting another blowout win tomorrow night for BG but junior quarterback Cash Jones hopes to continue his impressive season and lead McCracken County to a huge upset against the state’s best.

Follow me on Twitter @EMitchKSR for updates from Johnson Central. 

The SEC Network’s Postgame Interview with Austin MacGinnis Needs to be Addressed


After Austin MacGinnis nailed a 51-yard field goal to give the Kentucky Wildcats a victory over the Mississippi State Bulldogs, emotions cascaded across the Commonwealth.  Celebrations from Pikeville to Paducah probably took most away from the TV.  It was probably for the best.

After a series of questions, sideline reporter Quint Kessenich asked MacGinnis to “show me how you did it.”  Instead of “What was going through your mind when the kick was in the air?” or “Did you have confidence it was going in?” Kessenich became the holder and asked him to demonstrate the kick again.

It wasn’t as awkward as Billy G telling Jeannine Edwards “that’s really a bad question,” but it’s close. Luckily, MacGinnis was a good sport.

Austin MacGinnis Chokes Up After Teammates Finally Invite Him To Tolly Ho


Editor’s Note: The following was previously published on The New Circle Circular, Lexington’s #1 source of Fake News You Can’t Count On.

It looked like the Wildcats were gonna get snake bit again Saturday night and leave the 50,000 fans in attendance at Commonwealth Stadium in a state of total belief. However, after Mississippi State’s defense scored off a late Stephen Johnson fumble and eventually took a 38-37 lead with 1:09 left, an unlikely hero for the Cats emerged. Kicker Austin MacGinnis, as time expired, nailed a 51 yard game-winning field goal proving that, well, Mississippi State is really, really bad at football.

The 51 yard kick was a career long for the junior and the memory is sure to go into the scrapbook he keeps, the MacGinnis Book Of World Records. The amazing ending, though, was just the tip of the iceberg for Austin. In the midst of all the celebration and chaos that ensued, someone reportedly mentioned to MacGinnis that he could join some of the other guys at Tolly Ho after the game if he wanted to. “I mean, the feeling of the ball going through those uprights was cool and all,” said MacGinnis, “but I can’t begin to describe what it was like to get that invite to Tolly Ho afterwards. It’s what every little kid who aspires to be a kicker dreams of. Making the winning kick and getting asked to join the other players at dinner after the game. You just don’t think it’ll ever happen to you.”

MacGinnis said he’d never been to Tolly Ho, a local hotspot famous for their burgers. “Yeah, usually if it’s still open, our punter Grant McKinniss, long snapper Blake Best and myself head over to Panera after the games and grab some grub. Usually just a sensible salad or a scone or two. And if it isn’t open, we head back to the dorms and use the kitchen in the common area where I make some cups of ramen soup using the recipe passed down by my mom. The secret is to add half of the flavor packet while it’s cooking and the other half after. To be honest, it can get a little wild. One time we used two packets of flavoring in one cup, so yeah, we know how to party.”

While the players were elated to get the win and proud of their teammate for making the big kick, no one could figure out who actually invited MacGinnis to Tolly Ho. “Yeah, it was fine that he was there,” explained receiver Jeff Badet, “but I’m not sure who gave him the invite. We actually weren’t sure which special teams player we invited, we just knew it was that Irish sounding white kid who doesn’t have to do tackle drills. But man, he kept going on and on about how he and his kicking crew have turned their post-game dinners into some kind of book club. Kept bragging about how they were currently reading A Tale Of Two Cities which was cool because Paris and London ain’t that far away. So, we’re obviously trying to figure out who invited him.”

According to other customers, it was easy to tell MacGinnis had never been to the diner before. “First, he tried to come in through that one door on the side of the building even though it plainly says to use the other door. Then, he kept playing Tekken 2 but would only use the kick button. Finally, he actually had the nerve to ask for a free refill of his Pepsi.”

One source says during the post-game dinner, quarterback Stephen Johnson dropped some of his cheddar tots on the ground but MacGinnis jumped in and gave Johnson his extra cheddar tots off his plate. “Yeah, those tots slipped right through his hands,” tells MacGinnis, “but there I was, willing and able to bail him out…again. I was glad to do it though. The night meant so much to me. I actually kept my receipt and put it in the case that the university gave me for the game ball.”

To keep up with The New Circle Circular, like the Facebook page or follow Harold Leeder’s Twitter Account.

Watch Mark Stoops Address the Media for the Final Time Before Mizzou


Mark Stoops didn’t have too much to say, but he did discuss the changes in protocol that will occur with the early kickoff and how his players have embraced playing in hostile road environments.

The OTT Podcast, Episode 12: Freddie Maggard


On this week’s episode of The OTT Podcast, I brought in my good friend Freddie Maggard to talk football as Kentucky heads to Columbia for a crucial showdown with Missouri. You’ve heard Freddie on at least two other podcasts this week, but tune in to this one to hear me turn the questions on him. Highlights include…

— Why he’s had to take a step back from football coverage the past two weeks

— How “SEC Inside” made him and Jen cry

— His take on criticism of Stephen Johnson and Mark Stoops

— Scenarios for Kentucky’s remaining games

— If Kentucky goes to the Music City Bowl, will he come to Nashville?

We now have TWO sponsors on The OTT: The Bluegrass Box and The Bluegrass Box is quarterly subscription and gift box that curates high quality, handmade products from local makers around Kentucky. To try it out, go to and use the “TYLER” promo code for 10% off your first subscription order!

After you’re done there, visit to check out their selection of high end women’s clothing, shoes, and accessories at an affordable cost. Visit them online at and use the promo code OTT10 for 10% off.

To listen, just subscribe to “Kentucky Sports Radio” on iTunes or stream on Podbay.

Julius Randle threw the nicest baby shower anyone has ever seen



If you weren’t already aware, Julius Randle and his fiancé Kendra Shaw are expecting a baby boy named Kyden. The couple announced their pregnancy via an Instagram picture of a baby onesie of a Lakers jersey because it is never too early to make sure your kid will be a sports fan.

It looks like Randle and Shaw threw a baby shower over the weekend and it is honestly the fanciest party I’ve ever seen. The couple pulled out all the stops to celebrate their first child, and hey, if they can afford it, then why not make everything as nice as possible?

The pictures below that the two of them posted on Instagram in the past few days show just how nice the party was. Not that I’ve planned a lot of baby showers, or even one for that matter, but it looks like a party that would be too nice for me to even see in person. I would feel out of place being somewhere that fancy.

A photo posted by Kendra Shaw ( on

It is so weird to think that the UK’s players that played their one season at UK are now growing up, getting engaged, and having children. These guys are turning into adults when it feels like they were just donning the blue and white like six months ago. Regardless, everyone send their well wishes to Julius, Kendra and their future son Kyden. I think we found Kentucky’s starting forward in 18 years.

My angels.. We are excited for you Ky!

A photo posted by Julius Randle (@juliusrandle30) on


Drunk Texas A&M student wrecks into police car while sending topless selfie


Driving drunk is one of the dumbest things a person can do.

Taking a topless selfie while driving is also one of the dumbest things a person can do.

Combining the two is otherworldly dumb, and in this Texas A&M student’s case, it ended with a collision with a police car.

Meet Miranda Rader, a 20-year old Aggie who thought it was a good idea to: a) drive drunk; and b) send her boobs to her boyfriend on SnapChat while doing so. Her dangerous adventure behind the wheel led to her Acura SUV crashing into the back of a parked police car.

When an officer approached Rader’s vehicle, he found her with her bra unclasped as she was attempting to put on a black blouse. Beside her, an open bottle of wine.

Damn, girl. Dial it down a little bit. You’re doing too much at once and you’re lucky you didn’t kill someone.

Oh, and what’s your Snapcode? Asking for a friend, of course.

[Busted Coverage]

More quick-hitters and the full transcript from Calipari’s press conference


We’ve already reeled off a ton of stuff from John Calipari’s pre-Clarion press conference, but here’s one last run of leftovers and the full transcript before you sit down for dinner and the Titans-Jaguars game. Go Titans.


He’s not ready to name a starting five.

“It really doesn’t matter but I don’t know. We’ll figure it out. They’re off tomorrow, which means I’ll have some time to think about how to do it and what kind of rotation (we’ll use).”

His high school and college coaches will be at Sunday’s game.

In case you didn’t put it together, Clarion is John Calipari’s alma mater, so he hopes to see some familiar faces in the stands. He knows his high school coach, who is also a Clarion man, and his college coach will attend. He also invited all of the players he played with to come down, but he didn’t get that idea until two days ago, so he’s not sure how many will be able to make the trip.

He wore a Cleveland Indians sweatshirt during Game 2 because he was cold, not because he’s a fan. 

“Why did I have that sweatshirt on? Because I was freezing and I walked in and bought a sweatshirt and put it on. You won’t believe this, in Cleveland they sold no Cubs stuff.”

Indians manager Terry Francona was a good basketball player. 

“Terry Francona was a heck of a basketball player,” Cal said. “He was about 6-3 and a lefty shooting guard at New Brighton High School. He really could play.”

He’s happy for football and baseball facility upgrades, but “it’s our turn.”

“I’m so happy for baseball. I’m so happy for football. Anybody that’s worked with me (knows that) when they make a commitment to soccer, women’s soccer, what they’ve done for track, when you do those kinds of investments, in my mind, which works differently, you’re doing it for the kids, and I’m good. You’re doing it for the kids. You’re doing it for those players. You’re doing it for both men and women. I am ecstatic.”

“Alright, now it’s our turn.”


Read the entire transcript after the jump.


Retina scanners coming to the basketball facility

Stock photo (Not an actual UK basketball player)

Stock photo (Not an actual UK basketball player)

On Monday, Mitch Barnhart teased some upgrades coming to the Joe Craft Center, and today Calipari confirmed that his practice facility will indeed get a major overhaul within the next few years.

Among the upgrades?

Retina scanners!!!!!

“We’re getting them,” Calipari told reporters today. “And it’s not because I’m trying to stay up with (the football team). Our guys lose those fobs, so we gotta prop doors open. Anyone that wants to come in, there’s no locked doors here now.”

Now let’s talk for a minute, BBN. “There’s no locked doors” does not mean you can crash UK’s practices. I know a lot of you are considering it now that you know the doors are propped open, but do not do that. Stop it. You’re still thinking about it. I know you. You’re planning your sneak attack now. Don’t do it. Resist temptation. Stop. DO NOT.

Humphries, Wynyard expected to play Sunday


Good news on the injury front for Kentucky’s depth inside. Both Isaac Humphries and Tai Wynyard returned to practice yesterday and Cal expects they’ll play in Sunday’s exhibition.

Humphries told Cal he is back to 100 percent after sitting out a couple of weeks with soreness in his knee.

Wynyard missed a lot of action with a facial fracture he suffered during the Cats’ televised combine early this month. It sounds like Big Blue Nation will FINALLY get to see him play, although, at this point, I’ll believe it when I see it.

Mychal Mulder is “shooting the pee out of the ball,” whatever that means


Mark Zerof | USA Today

Mychal Mulder is shooting the ball well, at least I think that’s what this means.

Calipari said today that Mulder is “shooting the pee out of the ball” in practices. When asked to clarify, Cal said, “He’s making every shot right now. If you leave him open — and it’s driving me crazy because we don’t like to give up three — but he’s making them.”

Mulder said he’s more comfortable in the system going into his senior season. He’s battling for a spot and the competition keeps the practice intensity up.

As for his shot, he worked really hard in the offseason and his confidence has grown.

“I’ve progressed as an all-around player, including my confidence,” he said.