The date has been set for one of the best rivalries in college basketball. The Kentucky Wildcats will take on the Louisville Cardinals on Satuday, December 28th, 2019, at Rupp Arena in Lexington, KY. The game will air on CBS
This will be the 53rd time installment of the rivalry. Kentucky currently leads the all time series 36-16. Calipari has never lost to Louisville in Rupp and is 10-1 against UofL since he arrived at Kentucky (10-2 depending on your stance on vacated wins). This includes a 71-58 win last year in the KFC Yum! Center.
Kentucky should prevail in defending their home court, but Chris Mack may have something up his sleeve with his “Super Six” recruiting class.
Let us know your predictions in the comments or on Twitter and Facebook and follow us for more content from the Bluegrass.
With the offseason in full swing and recruiting basically over, all that is left for the Kentucky Basketball fans of the world is to sit back and speculate about the season to come. Hey, at least we are good at football now. Watching our entire lineup get picked at the NBA Draft every year is rewarding and depressing all at the same time. We’re proud, but wish that at least one of them would stay another season. Luckily, we get a new batch of ballers every single year and watch the process repeat itself.
So, as I wait for my cats to hit the hardwood again, it is time for me to jump to conclusions like Perry Stevenson jumping to block a free throw. Here is what the starting lineup should be for the 2019-20 season. As always, I am here to argue. Let me know what you think on Twitter and throw us a follow @soft7sports and me @soft7wic.
Projected Starting 5 for Kentucky
PG– Brad Calipari *record scratch
I’m totally kidding, but you’re lying to yourself if you think Ellen Calipari hasn’t thrown out the idea at least once. Maybe on senior day if he wasn’t dead set on transferring.
The REAL Projected Starting 5 for Kentucky
PG- Ashton Hagans SG- Tyrese Maxey SF- Kahlil Whitney PF- EJ Montgomery C- Nick Richards
Ashton Hagans proved last year that he can do much more than just run an offense. He was one of the best on-ball defensive players we have seen since DeAndre Liggins. Hopefully, he has developed a jumpshot.
Tyrese Maxey has an uncanny ability to get to the rim. Think of John Wall with the ability to shoot outside of 15 feet. He’s going to be a special player and I can see him assuming the starting role at point guard if Hagans is underperforming.
Kahlil Whitney is the player I am most excited for next season. After watching hours of his highlights, he reminds me of Michael Kidd-Gilchrist with the jumping ability of Hamidou Diallo. Expect two alley-oops a game and several players’ careers being ended by getting dunked on.
EJ Montogomery has major expectations to live up to. After a rather disappointing 2018 season, his decision to return to Lexington for his sophomore year will make or break his future. A 6’10” versatile forward that can step out and hit a mid range shot consistently looks great on paper. Now, he needs to prove it this season.
Nick Richards has had one of the more mediocre careers of Cal’s Kentucky bigs. Better than Skal, but average nonetheless. When he decided to come back to Kentucky for his junior year, Calipari told him that he expects him to be the best big man in the country. Something like that may have given him all the confidence he needs to finally make something of his college career. Some guys are just late bloomers, like Willie Cauley-Stein. It may take more than a year, but they can still be lottery picks when it is all said and done.
The starting 5 is never static and it could change multiple times throughout the year. The power forward position is the most uncertain. EJ would be the best option, but Nate Sestina will be breathing down his neck all season. As will Keion Brooks and Dontaie Allen. According to Coach Cal, Johnny Juzang has been playing out of his mind so far in practice. If he keeps it up and proves to be as good of a shooter as Tyler Herro, then he will be a very real possibility as the starting small forward or shooting guard. Don’t forget about Immanuel Quickley either. He will jump at any opportunity to take the starting role from Hagans.
John Calipari is known for two things in the coaching world: attracting the best recruits to come to Kentucky and then putting those same recruits in the NBA. So far, he has had 38 players drafted, 29 in the first round, 21 in the lottery, and 3 were taken first overall, BUT no NBA Championship rings. Sure, it’s out of his control, but why is that?
Well, one of the biggest reasons is that his best players get drafted too high. Others never live up to their full potential. The ones that can actually make a difference go to the worst teams that get lottery picks for a reason. The dysfunction of upper management and coaching can ruin even the best players. It’s hard to make the best of a bad situation when it takes 3 All-stars or perfectly timed injuries to win a championship anymore (nothing against the Raptors, health is an important part of a championship team).
But Coach Cal’s NBA Title woes may be coming to an end as early as next season. As part of the Lakers’ “oh my God, LeBron is older than we realized, we need to win now” initiative, they just traded away 95% of their future for Kentucky’s own Anthony Davis. Love or hate the Lakers, you have to be happy that AD now has the best chance at winning a title since 2012.
In fact, the Lakers are now the favorite to win the World Championship next season.
Many of Calipari’s Kentucky players have tried to win a championship, and some have come close, but all have failed. Boogie Cousins was the closest, but a plethora of injuries crippled his Golden State Warriors. Josh Harrellson was actually on the Miami Heat roster that won the title in 2011. But he did not meet the Heat’s minimum games played threshold to receive title recognition.
Hopefully, this year is the year. The LeBron and AD combo should be good enough to make a deep run in the Western Conference Playoffs, but they need just one more piece to ensure that Calipari finally gets his champion.
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John Calipari reportedly plans to have an in-house visit with Virginia Tech Grad Transfer, Kerry Blackshear.
Blackshear is the top rated grad transfer on this year’s market according to ESPN. However, there is no guarantee that he will be playing college basketball again this year. He has declared for the NBA Draft and has until May 29th to make his decision.
Surely, a year under Calipari at Kentucky would strengthen anyone’s draft stock. And a commitment from Blackshear on top of the signing Nate Sestina from Bucknell would make the Wildcat front court one of the best in the nation.
John Calipari is the best recruiter college basketball has ever seen. No calls, no texts, no emails, when he wants a player he flies private to their house and tells them to their face. He shows each recruit that they are a priority and never an afterthought. So far, it has has been working pretty well with 4 Final Fours, but only one title.
Turns out relying on 18 years olds doesn’t always turn out too well. Kentucky needs experience, but the top recruits that Calipari attracts never stay for more that a couple years. Hard to develop leaders in just one season. So how is the master recruiter going to get the experience he needs? That’s right, recruit it… through grad transfers.
Brad Calipari’s outfits are taking the college basketball world by storm. Every time Kentucky hits the court, Brad is first thing fans want to see. Usually we want an ill advised three pointer so deep that it would make LaMelo Ball proud, but this season we want to see what amazing outfit Brad has graced us with today. He has had so many great outfits that I needed to rank them.
#6. RIPIP to when Brad Cared If you have kept up with Brad Calipari, you know that the ever so rational Kentucky fans did not like his outfits too much. Brad definitely got the swaggy Cal gene, because this is right out of his dad’s playbook.
#5. Oversized plaid hoodie I don’t actually know if it is oversized, but it makes him look like he is a solid 220 when I know he is 180 soaking wet.
#4. Straight Outta Pleasant Park Not sure if this is a Fortnite reference or if he actually lived in a bougie paradise called Pleasant Park. I love this picture, because of how uncomfortable he looks on a basketball court.
#3. Brad $wag Not hating on any of these outfits especially, because I know each article of clothing cost more than what I pay in rent.
#2. Thanos Travis Wouldn’t exactly call someone who averages 11 and 7 Thanos, but this is still pretty sick and I want one.
#1. Night at the Roxbury The all time crowd favorite and the outfit that started it all. The chain and the turtleneck sweater that stole the hearts of millions.
Did we leave anything out? Let us know in the comments or on Twitter @soft7sports and follow us for more BBN updates.
Brad Calipari, son of Kentucky Head Coach John Calipari, disappointingly decided to redshirt for his junior season. That doesn’t keep him from sitting with the team for every game though. While we do not get to experience the excitement of Brad shooting an ill-advised 3 with 20 seconds left while Kentucky is up by 60, we do get a whole new experience we never knew we were missing. We all get to see how Brad Calipari dresses himself outside the basketball court.
Whether he is wearing an oversized plaid hoodie or a turtleneck with a gold chain, his outfits do not disappoint. This one was a crowd favorite at Rupp Arena:
Looking ready for a night at the Roxbury.
I am in no way hating on Brad’s clothes. Brad has even taken to Twitter to let everyone know he does not care what anyone thinks. I am glad Cal lets his players wear whatever they want regardless of who they are. It’s also kinda hard to hate when I know Brad’s outfit probably costs more than what I pay for rent in a year.
Kentucky fans have been getting particularly triggered about what Brad is wearing, but seriously who cares? Personally, I like that he wears whatever he wants. People act like his outfits are detrimental to the team. You know which one of Brad’s outfits would be the most detrimental? A UK jersey. If nothing else, just be happy he has something covering up that “Earned Not Given” tattoo on his chest.