Kentucky Basketball Gets John Calipari

All reports indicate that John Calipari is on a private plane chartered by UK that is headed to Lexington. No way we can confirm what for, but one has to assume it is a good sign for Cats fans.

I will be back home in about an hour or two and hopefully I will be able to update a new post on everything that is going on.

I will be putting links up with any news that comes up.

When news breaks I will have it posted it here as soon as I can.

UPDATE: ESPN just confirmed that John Calipari has accepted an offer to become the head coach.

This is one of the best days for Cats fans in a long long time.

Crazy Day In Lexington

Rumors have been flying all day that John Calipari will be names the head coach of Kentucky with a deal that will exceed 5 million dollars a year. Multiple sources have stated that Calipari has accepted the offer to become the coach, but until I hear it announced from the University of Kentucky I will remain silent.

I feel that he will end up here, but I encourage everyone to wait for the official announcement.

If Kentucky can get Calipari and keep the Orton and Hood and maybe get one or two of Calipari’s recruits to follow him to Lexington than UK becomes a final four caliber team next year.

When word breaks one way or the other I will be here to tell you about it.

Kentucky Football Looking For More in 2009

With all the talk about basketball lately I thought it would be a good idea to focus on the football team who starts spring practice on Wednesday

The Kentucky Wildcats have won three straight bowl games, defeated top notch programs in LSU, Georgia, Arkansas, Clemson, and Florida State, but the 2009 version of the Wildcats want more.

Trevard Lindley, Micah Johnson, and Jermey Jarmon all spurned the NFL draft to return to Kentucky for their senior season and will help lead a defense that was key to the Cats successlast season.

For the Cats to have a successful season the offense must improve upon their 2008 output. Mike Hartline comes into the season as the starter, but will be pushed by newcomers Morgan Newton and RyanMossakowski . If the Cats want 8 or more wins the offense has to move the ball up the field better and keep the defense off the field more than they did in 2008.

The 2009 home schedule is a fans dream with Louisville, Florida, Alabama playing in Lexington three straight weeks and Tennessee closing out the home schedule. Those four games are sure to be some of the biggest games Commenwealth has ever seen.

There will be fur highlights to the home schedule for Kentucky football fans:
-The chance to see the Cats beatdown instate rival Louisville
-The chance to see what could be one of the greatest college teams ever in Florida and one of the greatest college players ever in Tim Tebow
-Alabama only comes to town every five years and very rarely do they come to Lexington and the Cats have a chance to win, but the Cats appear to have that chance this year.
-The chance to perhaps see UK end the dreadful 24 year losing streak to Tennessee.

If you take a look at the 2009 schedule for the Cats 5 games will make or break the season for Kentucky and if the Cats can win 2 or 3 of these games the Cats might be looking at playing on New Years Day for the first time in 11 years.

Now let’s take a look at those games.

Louisville – This is a game Kentucky must win if they want to improve upon 2008. Kentucky will have it’s only bye week of the season before this game and with far superior talent there is no reason UK should not win this game. Kentucky has won the past two meetings including last years 27-2 beatdown. Will the Cats be ready for the Cardinals or will they perhaps be looking forward to Tim Tebow and the Florida Gators coming to town the following week?

Alabama – Kentucky last year was a fumble away from beating the Crimson Tide on the road and with Alabama losing their starting quarterback, running back and best offensive lineman this could be a game that with a few good bounces Kentucky could win. Kentucky has only beaten Bama one time in 80 years could they perhaps pull the massive upset in Lexington once again?

South Carolina – Kentucky has never beaten a Steve Spurrier coached team and has not beaten South Carolina since 1999. Going into Columbia will not be an easy task, but eventually UK has to get the Spurrier monkey off their back, could this be the year?

Auburn – Kentucky has not beaten Auburn since 1966 and have not won on the Plains since 1961, but if ever there was a year for Kentucky it is 2009. Following a 5-7 campaign Auburn fired Tommy Tubberville and hired Gene Chizik. If Auburn’s offense struggles like it did in 2008 I really like the chances of Kentucky getting the win.

Tennessee – With a 24 year losing streak to the Vols this is the game that all of Kentucky wants more than any other game. Kentucky has had close calls including a triple overtime loss in 2007, but can never get over the hump. With the loud moth Lane Kiffin now at the helm there is nothing UK fans would love more than a season ending victory over the Vols.

This could be an excellent season for the Wildcats, but everything hangs on those five games. win two or three and you ring in 2010 in sunny florida, but win zero or only one and it could be Nashville or Memphis again which would not be bad, but this football team and their fans want more in 2009.

Kentucky Basketball Must Hit A Home Run

Less than two years after Billy Gillispie became the head coach of the University of Kentucky Billy is out and UK once again finds itself looking for a head coach of the program.

Things must play out very differently this time around as Mitch Barnhart was very quick to pull the trigger on Billy Gillispe after Billy Donovan turned down the Wildcats. It almost seems as if Mitch did not know what he was really getting with Billy when he hired him, which was a guy who wanted to coach basketball and recruit and nothing else.

To many people Mitch Barnhart shares just as much of the blame as Gillispie does and I can somewhat see this. He brought in a guy who really wanted nothing to do with the other parts of the job and here at Kentucky you cannot thrive as the coach if you are not willing to embrace the fans and media. It seems to me that Mitch did not look in every direction that he should and that makes this search so important.

Mitch must take his time, he must make sure that he has the man ready to bring Kentucky back to the top. He must have a man ready to embrace the job and everything that it entails, not just the coaching and recruiting part. The Kentucky fans are going to be very impatient, but Mitch cannot rush this to appease them as that is what he did last time and just two years later we are already for Gillispie’s replacement.

When Mitch makes this hire he must be 100 percent confident that he has found the right man for the job, if there is just 1 percent of doubt than Mitch should not pull the trigger, there can be no doubt in this hire.

Mitch, Lee Todd, and Mike Pratt make up the known members of the search committee and they must find their man and they really must not take no for an answer. Having Mike Pratt a former player who loves UK on the search committee is really important as he knows and understands what it takes to be a Wildcat and will make sure we hire the right man for the job.

Who is the home run? To me the man we must go after until he either accepts or 100 percent says no is John Calipari. He has everything that is needed to be the coach here, he can coach, recruit, and would love the spotlight of being the coach at UK. He would relish the opportunity to take down Rick Pitino every year and the opportunity that comes with being the head coach of Kentucky.

I know Calipari has been accused of recruiting violations, but those accusations were nothing more than rumors. I know with Kentucky’s past problems of probation that we would like to shy away from anyone associated with recruiting violations, but nothing has ever been found on this man and he is the home run Kentucky must hit.

Calipari is the type of coach who would return Kentucky back to it’s normal self of playing for final fours and national championships. If he would come next year you could expect Meeks and Patterson to return and I think he would be able to reel Daniel Orton and Jon Hood back with him. At Memphis he has also secured commitments from from top three players in Xavier Henry and Demarcus Cousins both of who likely might follow him to Kentucky. Plus he is high up on the number one recruit in the county point guard John Wall who could follow Calipari to Kentucky who previously was on Wall’s list.

Calipari could have Kentucky playing for championships as soon as next year. Kentucky needs to go after him with reckless abandon and must do anything in its power to get Calipari.

There are other coaches who if hired would be very successful at UK, but I do not see anyone being as successful as Calipari would be here at Kentucky.

Gillispie Officially Out

At a press conference today it was announced that Billy Gillispie is officially out as the head coach at the University of Kentucky after just two seasons.

That is word and I will have a long update later tonight on what this means and the homerun that UK MUST hit with the next coach

What The Future Holds For Kentucky Baskteball

The next 24-48 are sure to be a wild ride for anyone with a vested interest in the University of Kentucky basketball program, with reports surfacing that an announcement will be made regarding the future of Billy Gillispie most likely at a press conference tomorrow afternoon.

Most reports have Billy out as head coach of the Wildcats, but until the announcement is made all talk will just be speculation.

My opinion remains that Billy should remain as the coach for at least one more year as he has not had enough time yet to right the ship. I understand that if he is dismissed that not all of it will be about the performances on the court, but more or less the way he interacts with the media and his role a head coach of the Wildcats.

I say work with him on it and watch him improve, this man has been a winner every where he has gone and I think with time he would put Kentucky back at the top of college basketball. This man eats, sleeps, and breathes basketball and no one wants to win more than he does, maybe I am wrong in believing that if given more time he will succeed and if I am wrong I have no problem admitting it, but I really think at the current time he is still the right man for the job.

If a change is made than you can expect to hear 5-6 different names thrown around for the job and maybe more. Billy Donovan, Rick Pitino, John Calipari, Travis Ford, and perhaps even other names will possibly be on Kentucky’s short list.

I think maybe 2-3 names on that list would consider, Donovan from all reports is once again Kentucky’s main choice, but just two years after he spurned the Wildcats would he reconsider and take the reigns?

Rick Pitino is the name that plenty of people in Lexington are pining for and Rick has always loved UK and regretted leaving here, but no way do I think we see Pitino on the sidelines next year.

John Calipari has built a dynasty down in Memphis and many really believe that he would be a perfect fit for the Cats, but with a past that includes possible recruiting violations I cannot see Mitch and Lee calling Calipari and offering him the job.

Travis Ford is a man who gets what Kentucky basketball is all about and many believe would have the passion to get us back to the top, will Mitch pull the trigger on a former Wildcat or look elsewhere?

No matter what happens in the next couple of days you can expect to hear anything and everything about what is going on, but until the press conference happens and a decision has been made one way or another I choose to believe nothing.

When word does break you can expect constant updates from me and what the decision means for Kentucky basketball.

Uncertain Future Faces Kentucky Basketball

With a loss tonight to end Kentucky’s season let the whirlwind of rumors begin. Lee Todd has said to not expect any news before Friday, but that will not stop everyone from talking about what is going with the future of the program.

I will be back tomorrow with a full post about the game tonight and the direction I believe the program will take so look for that sometime around noon tomorrow.

Until then have a great night