Cats Fan in the Ville

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With all of the comments about Florida's "struggles" on here, I would put that in perspective. Of the 8 commits, 5 are 4* talents. I believe I read on here or somewhere else they're at a mid-60% on the blue chip composite overall. Probably not where they need to be to compete with Georgia/Bama/Texas on a consistent basis, but certainly in a position to put a good product on the field and build from there. If Napier wanted to sign a bunch of talented 3* Florida athletes, I'm sure he could pad the recruiting class in a hurry. But that also seems short sighted given the talent pool around Gainesville.
No doubt for Georgia fans- I get it will be fun to watch the 3rd stingers (still plenty of 4*'s) getting some snaps. But as a fan of the SEC, I think the SC Clemson game will be competitive and the GA GA Tech not so much.
No offense to Georgia, but a SC/Clemson matchup would be my pick for a competitive and fun rivalry game. Hard to figure why they wouldn't jump on the chance to be on TV in a time slot not competing with other games across the country.
Kentucky is putting together a really nice class this year. Even if it manages to finish top 15-20, it's still going to be well into the bottom half of the SEC. Regardless of that, it's still nice to have the talent to compete week in and week out against the best teams in the country.
If Cal was a Player's First guy, he would have given Justin Edwards some real advice about how to improve his draft stock with another year of college. But like a lot of his former players, they leave too early and their career takes a much different trajectory. Typical Kentucky basketball under La Familia.
Oklahoma and Texas are storied programs. That doesn't mean it's not weird that they're in the SEC and not the Big 8 or Big 12 any longer. I always thought there was a neat mystique when conferences squared off that's kind of going away with all of the realignment. The regionality and proudness of such is going to be a thing of the past. I was living in St Louis for a short period of time when Mizzou and TAMU first joined the SEC. The feeling of fans there seemed to be "Who cares?". I'm sure not all, but that was the discussion at happy hour. I'm at least glad to see there is a real appreciation on the part of the newcomers in joining the conference. It's certainly going to make for some incredible matchups going forward.
Two top 10 draft picks and the Cats couldn’t make it past the first weekend. Again. The program had become fool’s gold. Not one 5* in last year’s national championship game. It just highlights how different college basketball and football are. I don’t expect a whole lot out of Pope’s team next year, but I think he’ll recruit good players with the proper expectations. #newchapter
They drive me crazy watching them! I think the biggest challenge for the Cats is consistently finding the strike zone... With the quality of the teams at this point, you simply cannot walk/hit batters and give up free bases. They have a really good defense behind whomever is on the mound- let them make plays.
Kentucky has one of the best defenses in college baseball. But I think the pitching can be erratic and sometimes hard to find the strike zone. Their offense feels like it's extremely hot/cold. If they can take advantage of playing at home in Kentucky Proud Park, the fans will be there to make it a nice home field advantage. They just don't feel like a team that's complete enough to land with the overall #2 seed in the tournament. They did take care of business and looked really good against Illinois and Indiana State- we'll see if they're ready for the moment on Saturday. Really hoping they put it together and make it to Omaha...
I haven't been that high on the Cats all year- and they continue to prove me wrong. The pitching has been pretty solid with the exception of the loss to SC in the SEC tournament. I'd consider it a win if they can make it to the WS, and then whatever happens is house money. They should certainly be proud of the efforts/achievements this season. Go Cats!
These guys reminds of the Ball family. All bragging, no humility. Just an extremely unlikable group of people with huge egos. He may turn it around at some point, but truly hard to root for that to happen. What kind of locker room leader makes posts/comments about former teammates? I guess this kid gets his lack of awareness from his dad.
I read the full article on KSR and from what Noah said he got the release in hopes of landing at Kentucky but stated he had not heard from anyone on the staff before making that decision. I haven't heard anything in Pope's past that would lead me to believe he's anything but above board, but I agree this would raise eyebrows...
I noticed the same thing... Imagine reading that 3 years ago.
Love what Kentucky is doing, but their schedule on the back half is going to get pretty tough starting this weekend against the Vols. They have won the games they were supposed to, but the overall SOS hasn't been daunting. Hope they can build on this momentum and prove they deserve their ranking...
There will be a lot of side takes this next season when the Hogs and Cats square off. It will be fun. We know Cal will bring a loaded team with NBA talent to Lexington.
It's such a weird hire- any Kentucky fan would respect and appreciate Mark Pope the player and captain of the 1996 NC team. It gets a little slippery when you insert that same person to lead the program. Time will tell if this experiment is successful. But the one thing that is not in doubt is that you have a guy who cares about all the same things that fans do. With the early tepid response to the hire, I thought there may be a light turnout Sunday. Keeping in mind it was a beautiful day in Lexington, Keeneland was running and the Masters on tv. And the fans just exceeded expectations. Which was such a cool thing to see. Again, it's a wait and see as it pertains to results on the court, but fan support, NIL support and administrative support are all there for this guy to make it happen.
Well you can say that Kentucky has not been a great program for the past 5 years... But in the last 15, Kentucky has won a national title and been to 4 final fours. Congrats on beating Kentucky on the road last year. Checking in to see how TN's history matches up with that??
For Arkansas fans: You're going to get a Cal with a fresh start. If he's learned anything in the last 5-6 years and uses that knowledge on how to build a better roster, it will pay dividends. For every McDonalds All American, you get one year. In Lexington, he was in a never ending cycle of replacing talented youngsters with other talented youngsters. I would not be surprised at all to see Cal take the Hogs to the next level. He brings excitement and star power where he goes. He just has to be humble enough to understand where he needs to change- and this could be what he needed to get it done.
It's taken a moment to get there for me too... But one of the things that I'm not sure has been mentioned is that I think if you're going to go with a former player, getting somebody from that era was going to be important. Cal made Kentucky a "cool" program with lots of Instagram and star power, but that hype was all about individuals. There was a time under Rick and Tubby where the program was most important. And I get every sense when reading about this hire that that is where this coach's head is at. That will go a long way towards mending fences and getting things in the right direction. I won't miss Drake appearance and LaBron showing up at practice. But I 100% expect Pope to forge relationships with Cal's former players. Cal didn't have good relationships (or any relationships) with former players and that never sat very well with me...
Yes, this was an underwhelming hire... But for those who will say "we replaced a HOF coach in Cal with this?" let's think about where the program was when Cal left. Like with any breakup, a lot of the dirty laundry has made it's way to the public. Cal's relationship with every aspect of Kentucky was broken. Reports of fighting within the team, boosters with closed checkbooks, a non-existent relationship with the university, and a tepid at best relationship with fans put the program in a no win place moving forward. It's also hard to gauge Mark Pope's potential coming from BYU or Utah whatever college- if his basketball IQ is anywhere near what his former coaches and teammates claim it to be, this situation will give him every opportunity to succeed at Kentucky. We already found out that playing extremely talented freshmen through March didn't work. The shocking stat that there were no 5* players on a final four roster will tell you that college basketball is still about developing talent. Because the blue chip burger boys are leaving college ball before their full potential is ever close to realization compared to what we see on college basketball courts. As a fan, I'm ok to internalize the fact that Kentucky was snubbed by every top name they approached. If the AD sees potential in a kid who he knows bleeds as blue as any fan, then let's roll with that. If I see improvement on effort- especially on defense and rebounding next year, I'm good with that. The boosters have already begun flooding the NIL funds, so Kentucky will be able to sign a decent class of HS and transfers to make this work. Cal is gone- let's move on and give Mark Pope a full chance to get this program back on track.
Boogie's comments are something he's earned the right to opine. But his time at Kentucky was during the glory days. I know he's loyal to Cal, but even a loyal former player would understand that with the salary and booster commitments come expectations to win. And no person is able to successfully navigate that conversation as it pertains to the last four years to justify Kentucky's performance.
Now that this official, I hope BBN is ready to recognize Cal for what he’s done and move forward in embracing the next head basketball coach. His recent post, as well as his wife’s post were heartfelt, genuine and should resonate with any fan who loves the Kentucky program. I agree that it’s time for a new voice and regime to lead the program, and I’m gratefull that it transpired as it did. Cal gave fans hope and delivered a lot of wins and success including numerous final fours and a national championship. I wish him well at Arkansas and believe that the next chapter for BBN will be just as fulfilling and memorable. Thanks Cal and good luck!
South Carolina has a team full of talent. They hit shots all over the court and played tough defense. Fun game to watch, but SC was just too much and too deep to lose to a singular phenom who didn't have her best game...
Totally understand that point. And Billy D would be welcomed with open arms in Lexington. For a guy that turned the job down twice already, he somehow managed to not burn the bridges leading into Lexington... Classy guy and admired by college basketball fans.
True- but this was an inevitable parting of ways... Cal just decided to be preemptive with this move. And it is a good move for him. But what poster said is true- no relationship with the local media, boosters, etc... Anyone that dared to question any part of Cal's strategy/coaching/recruiting was shunned. I hope he's humble enough to bring a fresh outlook to Fayetteville. And Kentucky can now use that buyout money they saved to bring in somebody who is more focused on the program than just touting how many Wildcats are on NBA rosters. The thing is that is not a mutually exclusive goal, but Cal was having an ever more difficult time understanding that.
Definitely agree on your perspective on Cal. But to be fair to normal fans, the relationship soured on both sides. There's always going to be the crazy fans that are never happy, but Cal's early success kind of made him think he was bigger than the program and when you're not seeing that same success, it becomes tough to hear John Calipari continuously talk down to the fan base. Not to mention the relationship with boosters and the athletic department. Everything was fractured/broken and it was going to be really tough for him to continue and have any real fan support. But now that "fans" have gotten what they've been asking for, it will be interesting to see what's next and who's running the ship...
@cats64, I don't think it's crybabies getting what they want- it's a simple fact that Cal has worked himself into a corner and the program has languished in mediocrity for a number of years now. Cal will generate a bunch of excitement for Arkansas and a fresh start will serve him well. Will he beat Kentucky? I'm sure that's a possibility- but Arkansas (among other teams) have been pretty successful AGAINST Cal at Kentucky, so nothing really new there either.
This is a good move for Cal. The NCAA fail again this season brought Cal ever so close to being fired. And Cal likes to be in charge- so preemptively taking the Arky job makes sense. And Arkansas has a nice solid basketball history, so I think this gives him the chance to reinvent himself where he would continue to battle the one and done model in Lexington. Now we will see what Barnhardt can do to replace him in Lexington. I have been one of the fans that's said it's time to go in another direction- but now that the time is here, there's some nervousness about the next hire and what that means. With all the name being tossed around, I'm not willing to bet on any of them. This may sound a little crazy and/or desperate, but I think brining Pitino back to steady the ship for the next 4-5 years would be a good move and close the circle with Rick retiring where he kind of got his start in big time basketball...
Congrats to Bama on a very nice season! I thought they had a better roster last year- which speaks even more to the coaching job by Oats.