Sports Illustrated writer has big expectations for Kahlil Whitney

Kahlil Whitney

By LARRY VAUGHT

Sports Illustrated writer Emily Caron has been previewing some of the nation’s top freshmen for the 2019-20 college basketball season and one of her picks is Kentucky’s Kahlil Whitney.

Here’s part of what she wrote about Whitney:

“The New Jersey native should slide into the small forward slot this season. Not as proven of a scorer as Keldon Johnson was, Whitney has some work to do offensively but brings a notable athleticism and more defensive upside to the position. The 6-6, 210-pound freshman comes to Kentucky with an NBA-ready body and the ability to pose a physical threat at the wing and in the paint. His physical tools give him a ton of potential defensively and the versatility to guard multiple positions.

Kentucky-Florida photo gallery by Jeff Houchin

Dan Mullen says Kentucky “should be a ranked team”

Kentucky fans thought UK had Florida beat Saturday. (Jeff Houchin Photo)

By LARRY VAUGHT

Kentucky fans today are obviously still trying to comprehend how the Cats got outscored 19-0 by No. 9 Florida in the fourth quarter Saturday night and lost 29-21.

It was a game Kentucky could have won so easily — and no matter what anyone thought of two key targeting calls against the Cats, UK did have a 21-10 lead and fourth down and one at the Florida 38 to start the fourth quarter.

Rich Brooks for all UK fans: “This loss makes me sick.”

Sawyer Smith threw for 267 yards and two scores and ran for a score but he also lost a fumble and three three interceptions in the loss to Florida. (Vicky Graff Photo)

By LARRY VAUGHT

Since I am not exactly sure how to describe Kentucky’s 29-21 loss to Florida Saturday night, let me turn to the words of former UK coach Rich Brooks the he shared on Twitter after the game.

“This loss makes me sick,” Brooks posted

Cats falter down stretch, lost 29-21 to No. 9 Florida

Kentucky players react after Chance Poore’s missed goal against Florida. (Vicky Graff Photo)

By KEITH TAYLOR, Kentucky Today

LEXINGTON — Kentucky ended a 31-game losing skid to Florida last season, but starting a streak of their own against the Gators proved to be a difficult task for the Wildcats in a 29-21 setback to the ninth-ranked Gators Saturday night.

Florida (3-0, 1-0 Southeastern Conference) scored 19 unanswered — all in the fourth quarter — after its starting quarterback Feleipe Franks went down with an injury in the third frame, putting a damper on Sawyer Smith’s debut as Kentucky’s starting quarterback. The Wildcats (2-1, 0-1) suffered their first loss after wins over Toledo and Eastern Michigan to open the season.

John Calipari hits Daily Double — Terrence Clarke commits and reclassifies

Terrence Clarke

By LARRY VAUGHT

Kentucky and coach John Calipari hit the Daily Double today.

Not only did mega talented five-star shooting guard Terrence Clark commit to Kentucky, but he also confirmed he was reclassifying to the 2020 class and would be at UK next year.

The 6-7 Clark was ranked as the second best overall player in the 2021 class and easily will be a top five player in the 2020 class. He gives UK four top 40 players in the 2020 class already as he joins five-star guard B.J. Boston and four-star forward Lance Ware and Cam’Ron Fletcher as UK commits.

SEC Nation Photo Gallery (Vicky Graff Photo)

UK basketball team provides food, fun for elementary students (Vicky Graff Photo Gallery)

By LARRY VAUGHT

Giving back is something Kentucky coach John Calipari emphasizes to his players and it often shows in the way former Cats who have successful NBA careers find ways to get involved in various charities.

But Calipari plants the seeds of servanthood early by doing things like the Cats did Friday when the players delivered bags of food from God’s Pantry to Picadome Elementary School in Lexington so students who need extra food at home over the weekend would have it.

Marshall County junior Zion Harmon waiting for Kentucky offer

Zion Harmon, right, with UK signee Tyrese Maxey at Marshall County last season. Maxey is now a freshman at UK and Harmon is hoping for a UK offer. (Larry Vaught/Verizon Photo)

By LARRY VAUGHT

Even though he does not yet have a scholarship offer from Kentucky, Marshall County junior point guard Zion Harmon — ranked the 25th best player in the 2021 recruiting class by ESPN — has the Wildcats among his final seven college choices.

Mark Stoops: “Just winning in general is important.”

Mark Stoops, right, and Vince Marrow have UK on the winning path. (Vicky Graff Photo)

By KEITH TAYLOR, Kentucky Today

LEXINGTON — Kentucky ended a 31-game losing streak to Florida last season. If you ask both coaches, that outcome won’t have a bearing in the Southeastern Conference opener for both teams set for Saturday at Kroger Field.

If anything, Kentucky coach Mark Stoops hopes the previous encounter against the Gators will “have a positive effect on our team” considering it took more than three decades to defeat Florida on the gridiron. The losing streak did produce several close calls prior to last year’s contest, including a 24-20 setback in 1993 and a 36-30 setback in triple overtime loss five years ago in Gainesville.