Larry Vaught

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UK women’s swimming team ranked 19th in preseason poll

Olivia Huffman. (Photo by Isaac Janssen | UK Athletics)

LEXINGTON, Ky. – The University of Kentucky women’s swimming and diving team is ranked No. 19 in the College Swimming and Diving Coaches Association of America preseason rankings, it was announced on Friday. The UK men’s team received eight votes, the second most in the men’s preseason poll.

Last season, the women’s squad finished third at the Southeastern Conference Championships on 927.5 points. The finish tied a program high at the league meet, a feat the team has accomplished just three times since the meet established in 1984-85. Remarkably, two of those third-place finishes have come in the team’s last three appearances at the league meet in 2017 and 2019.

Full transcript of John Calipari’s Big Blue Madness talk

John Calipari (Vicky Graff Photo)

As usual, Kentucky coach John Calipari gave his annual state of the UK basketball program address to fans at Big Blue Madness Friday night. Here’s the full text of what the coach said:

“What a night! What a celebration of the last 10 years of Kentucky basketball and the start of the next 10 … our second tour!

Landon Young’s father taught him the importance of character

Landon Young with his parents. (UK Athletics Photo)

By LARRY VAUGHT

Kentucky junior offensive tackle Landon Young was named to the Allstate AFCA Good Works Team® for his dedication to giving back and leadership on and off the football field. He is also one of 91 nominees for Wuerffel Trophy given to the FBS player that best combines exemplary community service with athletic and academic achievement.

“My father always taught me growing up that character is the most important thing in life above anything else you might accomplish in sports or anything else,” said Young.

Big Blue Madness photo gallery by Vicky Graff

Brandon “BJ” Boston will give John Calipari “versatility, length, scoring punch”

Brandon Boston (Lake Point Photo)

By LARRY VAUGHT

Maybe the forgotten player currently in UK’s 2020 basketball recruiting class is guard Brandon “BJ” Boston, the first player to verbally commit to John Calipari in this recruiting class.

Rivals.com recruiting writer David Sisk says Boston is a “little different” from guard Terrence Clarke, the highest rated player in UK’s 2020 recruiting class.

“He’s a thinner guy. He is about 6-7 but he has to put on some weight,” Sisk said. “He can score. No doubt about that. Him and Clark can play well together. They can be interchangeable at the 2 and 3, especially if Calipari goes small and opens lanes for them both to drive.

John Calipari: “We built this program to serve our players to help them reach their dreams.””

John Calipari (Keith Taylor/Kentucky Today)

By KEITH TAYLOR, Kentucky Today

LEXINGTON — It’s officially basketball time in the Bluegrass.

The University of Kentucky men’s and women’s basketball teams ushered in the 2019-20 season with the annual Big Blue Madness Friday night in new-look Rupp Arena Friday night. The upper side rows of the arena were converted to charity-back seating during the off-season, limiting capacity to 20,500 but as in the past, fans were lively as Kentucky unveiled its basketball teams to Big Blue Nation for the first time this season.

Arkansas coach says Kentucky “better than what their record says”

Chris Rodriguez had a late touchdown for UK at South Carolina. (Vicky Graff Photo)

By KEITH TAYLOR, Kentucky Today

LEXINGTON — Kentucky coach Mark Stoops doesn’t label games in terms of importance, but Saturday’s contest against Arkansas could set the tone for the rest of the season.

“Every game’s important to us, and I don’t mean any disrespect by that answer,” he said earlier this week. “It’s just we, as coaches, I don’t care who we’re playing, what we’re doing, the way we lead up to a game, the way we prepare, all that is really most important to me. The results are the results. We all want to win, but things happen in games that you can’t predict. That’s why everybody loves watching it.”

UK football takes recruiting hit when Louisville Butler receiver Jordan Watkins decommits

Louisville receiver Jordan Watkins gave his verbal commitment to UK earlier but announced Thursday he had changed his mind.

By LARRY VAUGHT

Earlier this week Kentucky coach Mark Stoops talked about how the open week gave him and his staff a “chance to spend time recruiting and get in front of the prospects that we have committed, to continue to recruit and put the finishing touches on this class.”

The Kentucky coach said he thought UK had an “opportunity to have one of the most significant (recruiting) classes” during his time at Kentucky.

Calipari continues torrid recruiting pace, offers 2021 wing A.J. Griffin

A.J. Griffin (USA Basketball)

By LARRY VAUGHT

Big Blue Madness tonight is always the start of a big recruiting weekend for Kentucky coach John Calipari. However, this year the UK coach seems to be making every day a big recruiting event.

On Thursday he went to New York and offered 6-7 junior win A.J. Griffin of Archbishop Stepinaca scholarship just like Duke, UCLA, Michigan, Villanova and others had already done. He’s ranked among the top five players in the 2021 recruiting class.

Time has come for Nick Richards to play with confidence

Nick Richards (Vicky Graff Photo)

By KEITH TAYLOR, Kentucky Today

LEXINGTON —Nick Richards is more than excited about the upcoming season than his first two seasons with the Wildcats and his goals haven’t changed, either.

“One of the goals when I came in was to win a national championship, and that’s one of my goals this season,” he said. “I don’t feel any pressure at all. I know I have a good team that’s behind me. I know I can play basketball, and it’s just me stepping on the court to prove to everyone that I can play.”