Oddsmaker would favor Wizards over Kentucky by 30 points

How Kentucky would fare against an NBA team has been a popular topic of debate this week. The Wildcats are in the Final Four and favored to win the national championship in the coming days. They have at least four players expected to make it in the NBA, including forward Anthony Davis, who is expected to be the top overall pick.

Charles Barkley, seeming to exaggerate how good Kentucky is, said they could beat some of the worst teams in the NBA. Former Maryland coach Gary Williams, who won a national championship in 2002, said Kentucky could beat the Wizards if they were playing at Rupp Arena. John Calipari tried to quash all that talk, saying his team could not beat any NBA team. Magic coach Stan Van Gundy agreed.

Just to get a little closure on the matter since, you know, everyone loves to debate this sort of thing, Nevada bookmaker Chris Andrews says the Wizards would be favored by 30 points against Kentucky if they played by NBA rules on a neutral court. The Wizards are 11-38 and have the second-worst record in the NBA. Kentucky is 32-2 and the No. 1 team in college basketball.

I’m not really sure why this is a debate given that only a few Kentucky players at present would see playing time on an NBA roster. However, just like any other basketball game where a team is favored by 30 points, anything could happen. And that’s about the chance Kentucky would have at a win.

Photo Credit: Brad Mills-US PRESSWIRE, Jamie Rhodes-US PRESSWIRE

Gary Williams says Kentucky could beat the Wizards at Rupp Arena

If Kentucky doesn’t win the 2012 NCAA men’s basketball championship, they’re going to leave a lot of people disappointed and confused. The Wildcats are loaded with NBA talent. That doesn’t always translate into a championship, but Kentucky looked to be in a class of its in through its first four tournament games. Considering there are many people who believe they could take down an NBA team or two, John Calipari’s boys should have no problem winning their next two games.

“I think one game — Kentucky couldn’t play in the NBA or anything like that — but one game at Rupp Arena, I wouldn’t be surprised to see Kentucky win one game,” former Maryland coach Gary Williams said during an interview with ESPN 980 on Tuesday. “Because you’re gonna have five players off that team playing in the NBA, and probably playing significant roles in the NBA. And that’s why I say that, for one game.”

That makes three NBA teams that Kentucky could beat now. Over the weekend, Charles Barkley said he believes the Wildcats could beat the Raptors and maybe the Bobcats. Williams at least justified his comment by saying he could see it happening one time at Rupp Arena, but even then I don’t know.

There are some terrible NBA teams in the league right now, but they’re still NBA teams. The players on the worst NBA rosters were the best players at their colleges. Yes, plenty of them are flops and draft busts, but it would be tough to imagine a bunch of 18, 19, and 20-year-olds taking down an NBA team. Then again, maybe I haven’t seen enough of the NBA teams in question.

H/T D.C. Sports Bog via Game On!
Photo credit: Daniel Shirey-US PRESSWIRE

Bob Knight called Kentucky ‘The team playing from the SEC’

Bob Knight, in an apparent show of disrespect, refused to mention the University of Kentucky by name when discussing the NCAA Tournament Saturday.

According to Matt Jones of Kentucky Sports Radio, when asked on “SportsCenter” which No. 1 seed was most susceptible to upset, Knight said “the team playing from the SEC.” It was apparently pretty obvious that Knight was pulling an Urban Meyer and refusing to call the school by its name.

For anyone thinking there was nothing negative intended by Knight’s words, history suggests otherwise. Knight is a champion of integrity in college basketball and has blasted John Calipari numerous times for being a dirty coach with a history of putting programs on probation. He even had to apologize last year for making negative claims about Kentucky’s program that were false.

So yeah, if you don’t think this was intentional from Knight, think again. I have no problem with it; the real problem is a dirty coach like John Calipari cruising through the tournament without anyone pointing out how his best seasons end up vacated because of cheating.

H/T Sports by Brooks Live

ESPN commercial showing Indiana’s win over Kentucky motivates Wildcats

ESPN has a commercial advertising its mobile platforms, and the ad features an exciting clip from the Indiana-Kentucky game in December. Most people probably don’t think twice about the ad, but apparently it’s motivated the Wildcats.

Kentucky is the No. 1 team in the country and 30-1 on the season. The commercial plays Indiana’s buzzer-beating three pointer that won the game. Every time the Kentucky players see the ad, they’re reminded of their lone blemish.

“Oh, I turn the TV off,” forward Terrence Jones said about the commercial. “Every time. I know I turn the TV off every time I see that commercial. I almost sold my iPhone, my iPad. I turn the TV off.”

Coach John Calipari called the ESPN commercial “one of the greatest services for my program,” noting that his players get angry every time they see it.

“It shows like 100 times on ESPN a day,” Anthony Davis said. “That really makes us mad. It’s just the way we lost. We never want to have that feeling again.”

Kentucky is one of the favorites to win the NCAA Tournament. If they end up taking it all, ESPN should get credit for an assist.

Below is a video of the commercial:

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Kentucky Women’s Coach Matthew Mitchell Michael Jackson Dance (Video)

One of the best parts of college basketball’s Midnight Madness is the coaches dancing. For the most part, it’s a train wreck. Coaches generally can’t dance. They give it a try after championships when they’re in a good mood just to get a rise out of the players and fans. Some coaches like Mike Gundy get overexcited and can’t control themselves in the locker room after a comeback victory.  However, Matthew Mitchell proves to us that there are some coaches out there who can actually move.

Mitchell, the Kentucky Women’s basketball coach, put a show at Kentucky’s Big Blue Madness over the weekend.  He busted out a Michael Jackson dance display and even through in a few seconds of The Dougie.  Check it out this video from BuzzFeed:

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John Calipari Setting Up Kentucky Pros vs. Dominican Republic Game

We told you in April that John Calipari was considering coaching the Dominican Republic national team. Cal has agreed to coach the team and he’s preparing them for the 2011 FIBA Americas Championship. In fact, he’s arranged a game between former Kentucky stars and his Dominican team. You’ll recognize many of the players on the roster.

According to Calipari, the Kentucky team will be coached by Joe B. Hall and Sam Bowie. John Wall, Rajon Rondo, Tayshaun Prince, DeMarcus Cousins, Jodie Meeks, Nazr Mohammed, Eric Bledsoe and Keith Bogans will play for the Kentucky pros.

The Dominican National Team will be coached by Calipari. Pros Francisco Garcia, Al Horford, and Charlie Villanueva are scheduled to play for the team. They’ll be joined by nine others.

The game will take place August 15th at Rupp Arena and tickets will go on sale shortly. I have to say, coaching the Dominican team was a genius move by Cal. The exposure he’ll receive in the D.R. will be huge. It will give Kentucky a major recruiting advantage in the country.

Thanks to Hoops World for the tip

John Calipari Will Celebrate His 500th Career Win a Second Time at Kentucky

Kentucky celebrated coach John Calipari’s 500th win on February 26th after the Wildcats beat Florida in an SEC game last season. The celebration was nice (even if Calipari’s barely been at the school), but it was also inaccurate. See, Kentucky had been counting the wins Calipari earned at UMass and Memphis that were vacated by the NCAA, so he had an extra 42 by their total.

The NCAA called the celebration troubling and wanted an apology. On Thursday, it came. (somewhat).

UK said in a release Thursday that it had agreed to list Calipari’s career win-loss record “in our media guides, Internet sites and other publications consistent with the NCAA’s official records and statistics.”

I’m not sure how I feel about this. Calipari is one of the dirtiest coaches in college basketball, so I like him getting stripped of wins. However, this news clears the way for Kentucky to celebrate him for a second time. Maybe the best solution would have been for the NCAA to wait two years before saying anything, that way Calipari would have officially passed the 500 win mark and there would have been no chance for a second celebration. Knowing Kentucky, they’ll probably have a statue ready for him when he does it again.