Good morning, friends. Monday was all for moving on, and the further we get from the Ole Miss game, the more my mood improves. Add in some long-awaited basketball news and this is going to be a good Tuesday. Let’s hit the rundown.
Need-to-know from a newsy Monday
On yesterday’s radio show, Ryan Lemond revealed that inside linebacker Jacquez Jones could miss significant time with a foot injury he suffered vs. Ole Miss, but that outside linebacker JJ Weaver (elbow) will return vs. South Carolina. On his radio show, Mark Stoops said that Jones is doubtful for this week and they’re awaiting test results to see how long he will be out. According to Scoop Lemond, offensive tackle Jeremy Flax and running back Kavosiey Smoke are both 50/50 for the South Carolina game.
If you can’t pull off the Keeneland/Kentucky Football doubleheader this weekend, you’ll get another shot next weekend. Game times for October 15 were released and the Cats will host Mike Leach’s Mississippi State Bulldogs at 7:30 p.m. on the SEC Network.
The Nashville speedster took home his second straight SEC Co-Freshman of the Week honor after a standout performance at Ole Miss. It’s his third SEC weekly honor. He and Benny Snell are the only Kentucky Football players to win the SEC Freshman of the Week award twice.
Stoops isn’t down on his team at all
Those of us expecting an angry Mark Stoops at the podium on Monday were in for a bit of a surprise. While Stoops was critical of his team’s mistakes, he praised their drive and intensity vs. the Rebels.
“I really — how do I say this without getting blasted — I really thought it was a great game even with the mistakes that we made. You know, we made mistakes that I am not proud of, and we need to coach better and do a better job, but it was a great environment, it was a great game, and I thought both teams played their tails off. They played hard, and it was competitive and stressed each other, and it was a really good football game. It stinks to come up on this end, believe me, but we talked a lot about preparing for the difficult environment and doing all those things. The guys were dialed in.”
Stoops was especially ardent in his defense of Will Levis, who took some heat from fans for his mistakes in the Cats’ loss.
“I wouldn’t trade him for anybody,” Stoops said Monday. “I just love his competitive nature, I love his ability, I love the way he is playing.”
Watch Stoops’ complete press conference below or click here for the transcript.
Afterward, Nick Roush and Adam Luckett stepped onto Kroger Field to discuss Stoops’ presser, which Luckett called his best of the season.
A few hours later, the boys convened with Freddie Maggard and Drew Franklin to close the book on Ole Miss and move forward to South Carolina.
Kentucky Basketball’s COMPLETE 2022-23 schedule is released
It’s been a long time coming, but today, we’ll finally get our hands on Kentucky Basketball’s 2022-23 basketball schedule. Over the past few months, pieces of the non-conference schedule have leaked out drip by drip. Last night, John Calipari tweeted that the entire thing will be available for your viewing pleasure at some point today.
Here’s the schedule as we know it. Games vs. North Florida (Nov. 23), at Gonzaga (Nov. 20), and Duquesne (TBD) are not yet confirmed.
- Oct. 14 | BIG BLUE MADNESS | Lexington, Ky. (Rupp Arena)
- Oct. 22 | Blue-White Game | Pikeville, Ky. (Appalachian Wireless Arena)
- Nov. 7 | HOWARD | Lexington, Ky. (Rupp Arena) – 6:30 p.m. ET, SEC Network
- Nov. 15 | vs. Michigan State | Indianapolis (Gainbridge Fieldhouse) – 7 p.m. ET, ESPN
- Nov. 29 | BELLARMINE | Lexington, Ky. (Rupp Arena)
- Dec. 4 | vs. Michigan | London, England (O2 Arena) – 1 p.m. ET, ABC
- Dec. 10 | YALE | Lexington, Ky. (Rupp Arena)
- Dec. 17 | vs. UCLA | New York (Madison Square Garden) – 5:15 p.m. ET, CBS
- Dec. 21 | FLORIDA A&M | Lexington, Ky. (Rupp Arena)
- Dec. 28 | at Missouri* | Columbia, Mo. (Mizzou Arena) – 7 p.m. ET, SEC Network
- Dec. 31 | LOUISVILLE | Lexington, Ky. (Rupp Arena) – 12 p.m. ET, CBS
- Jan. 3 | LSU* | Lexington, Ky. (Rupp Arena) – 8 p.m. ET, ESPN
- Jan. 7 | at Alabama* | Tuscaloosa, Ala. (Coleman Coliseum) – 1 p.m. ET, ESPN
- Jan. 10 | SOUTH CAROLINA* | Lexington, Ky. (Rupp Arena) – 7 p.m. ET, ESPN/2
- Jan. 14 | at Tennessee* | Knoxville, Tenn. (Thompson-Boling Arena) – 12 p.m. ET, ESPN
- Jan. 17 | GEORGIA* | Lexington, Ky. (Rupp Arena) – 9 p.m. ET, ESPN
- Jan. 21 | TEXAS A&M* | Lexington, Ky. (Rupp Arena) – 2 p.m. ET, ESPN
- Jan. 24 | at Vanderbilt* | Nashville, Tenn. (Memorial Gymnasium) – 9 p.m. ET, SEC Network
- Jan. 28 | KANSAS | Lexington, Ky. (Rupp Arena) – 8 p.m. ET, ESPN
- Jan. 31 | at Ole Miss* | Oxford, Miss. (Pavilion at Ole Miss) – 9 p.m. ET, ESPN/2
- Feb. 4 | FLORIDA* | Lexington, Ky. (Rupp Arena) – 8:30 p.m. ET, ESPN
- Feb. 7 | ARKANSAS* | Lexington, Ky. (Rupp Arena) – 9 p.m. ET, ESPN/2
- Feb. 11 | at Georgia* | Athens, Ga. (Stegeman Coliseum) – 12 p.m. ET, ESPN/2
- Feb. 15 | at Mississippi State* | Starkville, Miss. (Humphrey Coliseum) – 8:30 p.m. ET, SEC Network
- Feb. 18 | TENNESSEE* | Lexington, Ky. (Rupp Arena) – 1 p.m. ET, CBS
- Feb. 22 | at Florida* | Gainesville, Fla. (Stephen O’Connell Center) – 7 p.m. ET, ESPN/2
- Feb. 25 | AUBURN* | Lexington, Ky. (Rupp Arena) – 4 p.m. ET, CBS
- March 1 | VANDERBILT* | Lexington, Ky. (Rupp Arena) – 7 p.m. ET, SEC Network
- March 4 | at Arkansas* | Fayetteville, Ark. (Bud Walton Arena) – 2 p.m. ET, CBS
Home games listed in ALL CAPS; * – Southeastern Conference games
Jack Pilgrim and Shawn Smith will break down the new parts of the schedule on a LIVE edition of Sources Say on the KSR YouTube Channel at 8 p.m. ET. Join them during the show to ask a question about the 2022-23 slate, recruiting, or whatever your heart desires.
Offense Day at Practice
Tuesday is the offense’s turn to talk to the media after practice, so Nick Roush will make the trek to Lexington to share their thoughts on the Ole Miss tape and South Carolina preparations with you. Check the site and YouTube Channel tonight for a full recap.
Stephen Garcia talks smack
Kentucky has won seven of the last eight games vs. South Carolina, four of those at home; regardless, some Gamecocks fans are still talking trash. Former South Carolina QB Stephen Garcia said Kroger Field isn’t a tough place to play — even though the Gamecocks lost in Lexington his junior season.
Keep chirping, Gamecocks. It only fuels our fire.
Tyrese Maxey had a big night
Believe it or not, the NBA Preseason is upon us, and last night, Tyrese Maxey showed why he’ll be the next former Wildcat to get a big contract with a monster performance in Philly’s win over Brooklyn.
While we’re talking NBA, can Karl-Anthony Towns catch a break? Yesterday, Karl returned to the practice court in Minnesota after dealing with a non-COVID-19 illness that was so bad he was hospitalized and couldn’t walk.
Keep getting well, Karl. We need you back in beast mode on the court.
Celebrate National Taco Day at KSBar
Did you know it’s National Taco Day? Now you do. Instead of celebrating at a Mexican restaurant like everyone else, come try the BBQ taco at KSBar and Grille. It’s delicious and the ambiance is fantastic.
SEC Shorts did it again
I knew Ole Miss had to call in some favors for that win.
“Fall For The Bluegrass”
I’ll leave you with a poem written by John Cox, the Director of Public Affairs at the Kentucky Chamber and a New York Times-published poet. It was written a year ago but seems appropriate given the beautiful weather we’re enjoying and two straight weekends where we can do the Keeneland/Kentucky Football doubleheader.