Photo courtesy of myfoxtwincities.com
Each Friday, when I wake from my drunken slumber, I will review the biggest and most interesting stories in the UK and pop sports worlds of the past week. The views and opinions expressed within this post do not necessarily represent the views of the TGR Crew. The author (R.A.) of the post is solely responsible for the content. In other words, holler at your people!
After weeks of speculation, it was announced this week that former Louisville Cardinal player, Kenny Payne will be the replacement for Rod Strickland as assistant coach on Coach Cal’s bench. Payne has been at the University of Oregon for several years as an assistant and has become one of the most well known recruiters in the country. Payne had been rumored to have a relationship with Kentucky commitment and financial aid signee, Terrence Jones. Saying that, Payne did not successfully recruit 1 five star player to Oregon. That obviously doesn’t mean he is not a great recruiter, but if he is “great”, what are the guys we already have at UK? Welcome back to the bluegrass Coach Payne and the Payne Family! I am sure Louisville fans are thrilled you are back in this capacity.
The NBA conference finals are in full swing, I guess. After the Celtics and lakers grabbed control of their respective series, the script has officially been flipped. The Greatest point guard of all time, Rajon Rondo, and his Celtics had a 3-0 lead on Anfernee Hardaway and his magic, that lead is now 3-2 after Dwight Howard decided to show up to play in the past couple of games. I would care so much more if Dwight Shrewt played in the NBA.
In the Lakers/Suns series, the series also stands at 3 games to 2, with the Lakers winning game 5. One thing about this series that bothers me, when did Grant Hill stop playing for the Detroit Pistons? It seems like yesterday that he signed a shoe contract for Fila.
Orlando “Tubby” Smith was in the news this week, and surprisingly, it was not for donating a boat load of money to a charity or for helping an elderly woman across the street. Tubby and the University of Minnesota were sued by jimmy Williams, a former assistant coach at Oklahoma State. Williams claimed that Smith offered him a job on the Gopher coaching staff and after Williams quit his job at OSU and moved to Minnesota, he was told he did not have a job there. Minnesota’s athletic director made the decision not to hire Williams after it was revealed Williams had several NCAA violations on his resume. To make a ridiculously long story short, the jury found Tubby falsely represented that he had the authority to hire Jimmy Williams as assistant coach, and awarded Williams $1.25 million. In my opinion, Tubby’s days in Minneapolis are numbered and if he is offered a decent job in the next calendar year, he will get out of there as soon as possible.
UK released the grade point average for its athletic program this week. The cumulative average for all 22 varsity teams at UK was 3.04, the best in Mitch Barnhart’s time as athletic director. Barnhart set a goal of a cumulative 3.0 average, and he should be congratulated for doing so, so, congrats Mitchy!
Coach cal announced this week that his basketball team showed some improvement on the academic front this spring too. The basketball team’s GPA went from 2.025 in the fall to 2.18 in the spring. Daniel Orton dropped out after the season, and presumably received a 0.0 GPA, so, for UK to have improved is more impressive than it seems. I believe it was Boogie Cousins that said before the Cornell Sweet 16 game, and I paraphrase, “This is basketball, not a spelling bee”, he was correct, and by the looks of the GPA, thank god he was.
Finally, I would like to acknowledge the oil spill still taking place in the Gulf of Mexico. I would like to start by saying that all of us at TGR that are not atheist are praying for you and your families, those of us who are atheist are doing whatever we do for you. Selfishly, I can’t help but think about all of the beautifully delicious shrimp and crabs that are being destroyed at the bottom of the gulf right now. I can nearly taste the butter soaked crab legs as I write. Fisherman and other wise are having their livelihoods turned upside down right now because of a company’s half ass attempts at safety on an oil rig out in those waters. We can save Haiti after an earthquake, we can save Afghanistan, we can liberate Iraq, we can put a man on the moon, and we can construct fitted hats big enough to fit Fertig’s melon, surely we can plug this oil well in a week. Mr. Obama, I beg of you, save my crabs!
Happy Memorial Day Everyone!