Cats looking like favorite for 2014-2015 Champions

Fans who were disappointed in this years Wildcats, that is until they made their NCAA Tourney run, will have yet another Calapari team loaded with talent and high expectations from BIG BLUE NATION. UK was expected to lose as many as 6 players to the NBA this year, but only Randle and Young decided to forego their college careers and move on to the NBA.

UK Wildcats celebrate as they make it to yet another Final Four - Photo Michael Huang - East KY Media
UK Wildcats celebrate as they make it to yet another Final Four – Photo Michael Huang – East KY Media

 

The Harrison twins were the final piece to fall into place in next years star studded team filled with McDonalds All-Americans. Along with the “Twins”, Willie Cauley Stein, Dakari Johnson, Marcus Lee & Alex Poythress all are coming back. That coupled with big man Karl Towns, Guards Ulis and Booker  along with Trey Lyles, Dominque Hawkins & Derek Willis, UK is as deep as anyone in the country and have the tournament experience to beat anyone in the Country.

Kentucky will be one of the biggest if not the biggest team in the country with Johnson, Stein and Towns up front and the Harrison twins in the back court. How many teams in the NCAA would like to have Ulis, Poythress, Lee, Booker, Hawkins, Willis or Lyles starting for them, lit alone coming off the bench? UK has at least 12 players than can start for 95% of the teams in the country.

Calipari’s biggest problem next season appears to be how to play everyone and who to fit in with Stein, Johnson and the twins. The Wildcats have been in 2 Championship games, won one of those, 3 Final Fours and one Elite Eight, all  in 5 short seasons at UK. No other team in the Nation can even come close to those lofty achievements. Once again, UK is expected to make a deep Tournament run and quite possibly their 9th NCAA Championship.

Below are Press Releases for UK players making announcements on their future with the Wildcats.

 

The Harrison Twins will be coming back for another chance at an NCAA Title. Photo by Michael Huang - East KY Media
The Harrison Twins will be coming back for another chance at an NCAA Title. Photo by Michael Huang – East KY Media

Harrisons to Return for Sophomore Seasons

Freshman guards join Cauley-Stein, Lee, Johnson and Poythress among returnees

LEXINGTON, Ky. – Freshman guards Aaron and Andrew Harrison will return to the Kentucky men’s basketball program for the 2014-15 season, they announced Friday.

Aaron Harrison started all 40 games for the Wildcats during the 2013-14 season and averaged 13.7 points and 3.0 rebounds per game. He knocked down three of UK’s all-time most memorable shots in three consecutive games in helping UK past Louisville, Michigan and Wisconsin in the NCAA Tournament to reach the national championship contest.

“I’m coming back for a second season in large part because last year’s title run was special, but we still have unfinished business,” Aaron Harrison said.

Andrew Harrison started 39 games for UK and poured in 10.9 points and added 4.0 assists per game. He dished out three or more assists in seven of UK’s final nine games. His-20 point performance led all Wildcat scorers in an upset of No. 1 seed Wichita State in the NCAA Tournament.

“I’m returning for my sophomore season because I want to win a national title.” Andrew Harrison said.

“I’m excited about Aaron and Andrew’s decision to return for next season,” head coach John Calipari said. “Their postseason play was a result of the improvement they made all season and displayed what they’re capable of doing on the court. I look forward to having the opportunity to work with them during the summer and watch them lead next year’s team.”

Sophomores Willie Cauley-Stein and Alex Poythress and fellow freshmen Dakari Johnson and Marcus Lee have already announced their intentions to return for the 2014-15 season.

With the announcement of the Harrisons, Kentucky is set to return 67 percent of its assists (300), 65 percent of minutes played, 59 percent of its scoring (1,773) and 54 percent of its rebounds (872) produced from its Final Four squad.

Additional returnees include freshmen Dominque Hawkins, Derek Willis and EJ Floreal, who all saw action this season. The Wildcats will also welcome the No. 2 rated recruiting class in the nation that sports four McDonald’s All-America and Jordan Brand Classic players in Devin Booker, Trey Lyles, Karl-Anthony Towns and Tyler Ulis.

Johnson to Return for Sophomore Season

Freshman center joins Cauley-Stein, Lee and Poythress among returnees

LEXINGTON, Ky. – Freshman center Dakari Johnson will return to the Kentucky men’s basketball program for the 2014-15 season, he announced Wednesday.

“After looking at the information provided to me by Coach Cal and the NBA committee, my family and I made the decision for me to return to UK for my sophomore year,” Johnson said. “Returning to school allows me to build on my leadership skills, improve my individual basketball strength and conditioning skills, and have another opportunity to accomplish one of my individual goals: winning an NCAA national championship in college.”

The 7-foot center started 18 of Kentucky’s last 20 games, averaging 5.8 points and 4.6 rebounds per game during that stretch. Johnson tallied nine points and a career-high 11 rebounds in UK’s postseason-opening win over LSU in the Southeastern Conference Tournament.

“I’m happy to have Dakari back with us for next season,” head coach John Calipari said. “Despite being the youngest player on the team this season, he continued to improve every day on the court and it showed. We look forward to seeing his improvement over the summer and throughout next year.”

The Brooklyn, N.Y., native grabbed six or more rebounds four times during UK’s postseason run, while shooting better than 62 percent from the field during the NCAA Tournament.

Sophomores Willie Cauley-Stein and Alex Poythress and fellow freshman Marcus Lee have already announced their intentions to return for the 2014-15 season.

Poythress to Return for Junior Season

Sophomore forward joins Cauley-Stein and Lee among returnees

LEXINGTON, Ky. – Sophomore forward Alex Poythress will return to the Kentucky men’s basketball program for the 2014-15 season, he announced Wednesday.

“Playing in the NBA has always been a dream of mine, but I want to make sure that I’m NBA-ready before I make that jump,” Poythress said. “By coming back, I’ll be so much closer to earning my degree in business and it will give me another year to prepare my game and my body for the next level.”

The 6-foot-7 forward averaged 5.9 points and 4.5 rebounds in helping lead the Wildcats to the NCAA title game. He shot better than 68 percent from the field in the NCAA Tournament, including an eight-point, seven-rebound performance in the Final Four against Wisconsin.

“I’m excited for Alex and the decision he’s arrived at,” head coach John Calipari said. “I’m proud of the work he committed to this past season, on and off the floor, and think he’s ready to take that next step and lead this team next season.”

The Clarksville, Tenn., native tallied a double-double (10 points, 13 rebounds) in UK’s season-opener against UNC Asheville and pulled down 12 rebounds two games later against second-ranked Michigan State.

Fellow sophomore Willie Cauley-Stein and freshman Marcus Lee announced their intentions to return for the 2014-15 season last week.

Lee to Return for Sophomore Season

Freshman forward joins Cauley-Stein among returnees

LEXINGTON, Ky. – Freshman forward Marcus Lee will return to the Kentucky men’s basketball program for the 2014-15 season, it was announced Friday.

“I’ve really enjoyed my college experience and I’m looking forward to continuing to develop as an all-around player,” Lee said. “Playing in the Final Four was such an amazing feeling, but I want to come back and help win that final game this year.”

The 6-foot-9 forward was called upon in Kentucky’s Final Four run and he answered the call with a 10-point, eight-rebound, two-block performance in the Elite Eight against Michigan. He finished the tournament shooting 70 percent from the field and was named to the Midwest Regional All-Tournament team.

“I’m excited for Marcus and think he’s barely scratched the surface of what he’s capable of,” head coach John Calipari said.  “In addition to his athleticism and the energy level he brings, the experience he gained in the NCAA Tournament this year will be immeasurable for us next season.”

The Antioch, Calif., native tallied 17 points in UK’s season-opener against UNC Asheville and pulled down a then-career-high six rebounds against Northern Kentucky.

The NBA Early Entry deadline is at 11:59 p.m. ET Sunday, April 27.

Kentucky residents have chance to win an iPad in KHEAA drawing

FRANKFORT, Ky. (April 24, 2014) — Kentucky residents have another chance to win a new iPad from the Kentucky Higher Education Assistance Authority (KHEAA) in a sweepstakes being held through Facebook in May. The contest runs from 12 a.m. on May 1 through 12 a.m. on June 1.

IPad giveaway. (Photo Item may not be same as actual IPad)
IPad giveaway. (Photo Item may not be same as actual IPad)

To enter, a Kentuckian must click on the orange graduate icon on the KHEAA Facebook page, answer one question about college, and “like” KHEAA on Facebook. KHEAA will not share or sell any personal information to a third party.

Only Kentucky residents are eligible. Prior winners are not eligible. Employees of KHEAA or its sister agency, the Kentucky Higher Education Student Loan Corporation (KHESLC), and their immediate family members are not eligible.

The drawing will be held in early June, and the winner will be notified by email. The winner must respond by email within three calendar days to receive the iPad. If no response is received within three days, another winner will be drawn.

To learn how to plan and prepare for higher education, go to www.gotocollege.ky.gov. For more information about Kentucky scholarships and grants, visit www.kheaa.com; write KHEAA, P.O. Box 798, Frankfort, KY 40602; or call (800) 928-8926, ext. 6-7372.

UK Hoops Heading to the Sweet 16

By: Tyrus York – The #3 seeded UK Hoops team accomplished something Monday night that was a first for the program.  By defeating #6 seed Syracuse 64-59, they advanced to their 3rd straight Sweet 16 in the NCAA Tournament for the first time in school history.

The win did not come easy for the Cats, especially after their near 50 point romp over Wright State on Saturday.  The offense slowed to a near halt Monday night, shooting only 36.2% behind 21-58 shooting.

The good news was that the Kentucky defense stepped up and limited Syracuse to only 33.3% from the field.  The Wildcats also forced Syracuse into 23 turnovers which included 15 steals.

The Orange presented a different matchup for the Cats with more size down low than Kentucky seemed to be ready for.  Many of their misses came from inside the paint on missed layups.  Syracuse was also able to out rebound the Cats 41-38.

Despite the size of Syracuse, Kentucky’s DeNesha Stallworth was very effective, going for 13 points and 6 rebounds.  She gave the Wildcats consistency down low while the other post players struggled offensively.

Samarie Walker was one of those players that struggled, scoring only 1 point, but she made her presence known on the glass grabbing 7 rebounds.

Bria Goss was the leading scorer for the Cats with 17 points as she overcame a 3-7 shooting performance by knocking down 11-12 from the free throw line.  Most of those free throws were down the stretch to put the game away for Kentucky.

Senior Kastine Evans provided a much needed lift on the otherwise cold shooting night for the Cats hitting 3-4 from the three point line.

Syracuse was without their leading scorer in Brittany Sykes as she went down with a knee injury in the first round on Saturday.  That no doubt limited the Orange, but players like Brianna Butler (15 pts), Briana Day (13 pts), and Alexis Peterson (12 pts) all stepped up to keep the game close.

Kentucky will play Baylor in the Sweet 16 in what will be a rematch of one of the most epic games in women’s basketball history.  The two teams met on December 6 in a 4 overtime game that ended up being a 133-130 Kentucky win.

That game is scheduled to tip off Saturday at noon in South Bend, Indiana in the Notre Dame region.

Life Should Not Be A Marathon

If you feel that you are running a million miles an hour and it is exhausting you, you may not have learned the art of pacing yourself. A marathon runner learns that it is pointless to try to run at top speed throughout the race. Life should not be a marathon, but it can seem like one if we never take time to rest.

 

Unless our lives are incredibly simple, there is probably more for each of us to do in a day or a week than we could ever hope to accomplish. If we always focus on what we did not accomplish, as opposed to what we did do, then we create inner turmoil – everything from stress and anxiety to lowered self-esteem. The pace of modern life makes it easy to forget that the purpose of life is to BE, not to DO.

 

If things are getting hectically out of hand, it might be a good idea to call a time out. Leave the laundry or the paperwork, and just take a relaxing bath with or without a good book. If you are overscheduled in the evenings and weekends, take a week off from all commitments. If you were sick, you would have to miss things, and taking some pre-emptive rest and relaxation might avert that. If you are tired, go to bed two hours earlier than usual. It will produce the same result as if you were able to sleep in.

 

If you have become too serious about life, go out with friends and have fun. You see, the end of life will come, and we STILL won’t have everything done. It’s not about how fast we go, or how much we do – it is truly about how much we enjoy.

 

So pace yourself, and sprinkle plenty of enjoyment throughout your days.

 

Gwen Randall-Young is an author and award-winning Psychotherapist.  For permission to reprint this article, or to obtain books or cds, visit www.gwen.ca

KSP Dispatching For Kentucky Department of Fish & Wildlife Conservation Officers

Kentucky Department of Fish and Wildlife
Kentucky Department of Fish and Wildlife

(Frankfort, Ky.) —On April 1, Kentucky State Police telecommunicators started providing dispatching service to 131 Kentucky Dept. of Fish and Wildlife Resources (KDFWR) Conservation Officers throughout the state.

 
According to Lt. Col. Jack Miniard, director of the KSP Operations Division, KDFWR approached KSP last fall regarding the new arrangement. “Conservation officers across the state were being dispatched from a central location in Frankfort,” he said. “They wanted to dispatch their officers from local KSP posts to enhance local law enforcement interaction and enhance safety for their officers.”
 
With a proven network of telecommunicators already in place at 16 posts throughout the state and one headquarters location, KSP was a logical and economical choice to provide communication services for KDFWR’s nine districts. “Communication distances are shorter and since KSP dispatchers live and work in the areas, they have better knowledge of the specific areas,” explains Miniard.
 
A pilot program initiated at KSP Post 15 in Columbia during February of this year to evaluate the arrangement went well. With a little extra training on KDFWR codes and procedures, KSP telecommunicators rose to the challenge and post technicians installed radios and vehicle repeaters in 140 KDFWR trucks and 60 boats.
 
“The new arrangement is a big win for all,” notes Miniard.  “It enhances conservation officer safety and provides more situational awareness between KSP and KDFWR in the field, which has mutual benefits for officers of both agencies.”
 
KDFWR is an agency of the Kentucky Tourism, Arts and Heritage Cabinet. Its officers patrol fields, forest lands, streams, lakes and rivers enforcing state and federal hunting, fishing and boating laws throughout the Commonwealth for resource protection and public safety. They also conduct drowning investigations, investigate and reconstruct boating accidents and perform rescue duties.
 
KSP employs 163 telecommunicators throughout the state. In 2013, they answered a total of 529,179 requests for assistance. Often called the “unsung heroes of public safety,” these men and women provide a lifeline to both citizens in need and officers in the field. They serve as an unseen, but vital link in keeping law enforcement officers and the public safe at all times of the day or night.

Raymond Joseph Gutt Obit

Raymond Joseph Gutt, 94, Jackson passed away Thursday, April 3, at his residence.  He is survived by his wife,  Lillie Gutt of Jackson; one son, Ray Gutt of Florida; Marilyn Kontol of Florida.  Memorial services Sat., April 5, 11:00AM at the Breathitt Funeral Home Chapel with Father Reynolds officiating.  Breathitt Funeral Home in charge of arrangements.

Bertha Stamper Obit

Bertha Stamper Obit
Bertha Stamper Obit

Bertha Stamper, 77, Irvine passed away Wed., Apr. 2, at the Irvine Nursing Home.  She was the daughter of the late Newton and Emmaline (Arrowood) Stamper.  She was also preceded in death by 4 brothers, Hiram Stamper, Paul Stamper, Roger Stamper, James Stamper; four sisters, America Grassmyer, Elizabeth Turner, Clarie Mae Turner, Julie Ann Stamper.  She is survived by two brothers, Elihue Stamper of Winchester, Kelly Stamper of Winchester; host of nieces and nephews.  Funeral services Sat., April 5, 2:00 PM at the Breathitt Funeral Home Chapel with Rev. Paul Turner officiating. Burial in Arrowood – Turner Cemetery at Canoe.  Breathitt Funeral Home in charge of arrangements.

Carol Sue Combs Obit

Carol Sue Combs
Carol Sue Combs

Carol Sue Combs, 65, passed away Tuesday, March 25 at the St. Joseph Hospital in Lexington.  She was the wife of the late Luther Columbus Combs and the daughter of the late James Eugene and Ida (Puckett) Faulkner.  She is survived by son, Luther Charles Combs; daughter, Regina (Jerry) Stamper; brother, Charles Eugene (Mary) Faulkner; sisters, Brenda Kay Banks, Wilma Faye Crase. Funeral services Sat., March 29, 1:00PM at the Breathitt Funeral Home Chapel with Rev. John Bunn officiating.   Burial in Jackson Cemetery at Jackson.  Breathitt Funeral Home in charge of arrangements.

Lawrence Gerald Little Obit

Lawrence Gerald Little
Lawrence Gerald Little

Lawrence Gerald Little, 64, passed away Sun., Mar. 23, at his residence.   He was the son of the late Floyd Little and Virgie (Vires) Weaver.  He is survived by wife, Linda Little of Belcher Fork; son, Anthony(Courtney) Little of Tomahawk; daughter, Kelli(Justin) Gross – Belcher Fork; sons, Patrick Little, Tony Little, Tommy Little; daughter, Sioux Napier; two brothers, Glenn (Lois) Little of Erlanger, Paul Ray (Vivian) Weaver of Lost Creek; two sisters, Bobbi Little of Erlanger, Sherri (Thomas) Marshall of Jackson; two grandchildren, Ryder Kanon Little, Jensen Cole Gross; host of nieces and nephews.  Funeral services Thurs. Mar. 27, 2:00PM at the Breathitt Funeral Home Chapel with Rev. Archie Combs officiating. Burial in the Little Family Cemetery at Belcher Fork.  Breathitt Funeral Home in charge of arrangements.

Danny Gillum Obit

Danny Gillum Obit
Danny Gillum Obit

Danny Gillum, 63, passed away Thursday, March 20, at the Greg and Noreen Wells Hospice Care Center in Hazard.  He was preceded in death by his parents, Charlie and Katie (Fugate) Gillum.; one brother, Rondell Gillum; one sister, Bertie Frazier.  He is survived by his wife, Donna Gillum; two sons, Timothy Gillum, Caleb “Buckshot” Gillum; two daughters, Amy Jo (Hizim) Okasha, Jennifer (Steve) Banks; two brothers, Carl Gillum, Sherman Gillum; two sisters, Gladys Haddix, Linda Hollon; three grandchildren, Ibrahim Laith Okasha, Jalen Banks, Jared Banks; two special friends, Russell Banks, Charles Moore.  Funeral services Sat., Mar. 22, 11AM at the Breathitt Funeral Home Chapel with Rev. Armon Nichols officiating.  Burial in Spencer Cemetery at Frozen.  Breathitt Funeral Home in charge of arrangements.