Before you get excited, no, Prison Break is not coming out with a new season on Netflix *Arrested Development voice*. I didn't just discover the wonder that is Prison Break either because it's the summer and what else are you supposed to do all day besides watch entire seasons of shows? *Teacher on summer vacation voice*. I've already watched Prison Break in its entirety. But much like a few really, really good books out there in this world... a show like Prison Break can be appreciated for the second time around. I have recently started re-watching it from the beginning with a group of friends who are experiencing the show for the first time. If you are looking for a show to get into this summer that you missed the first time around, settle down with Wentworth Miller (pictured above, for the ladies of KSR) and his band of prison misfits on Netflix.
Prison Break follows Michael Scofield (Miller) as he intentionally lands himself in the same prison as his brother Lincoln, who is just a few weeks away from facing the Death Penalty. Lincoln has been wrongfully accused of the murder and Scofield and his brilliant and creative mind devised a way to break him free from prison. Scofield's masterpiece is a nearly full upper-body tattoo which when decoded is a blueprint of the prison and his elaborate plan for the escape. Not only is it genuinely interesting to get a glimpse into Scofield's brilliant mind and schemes for the escape, but the characters who wind up joining forces to help with the escape along the way help make the show what it is. Whether it's the creepy and quite honestly disturbing "T-Bag," who has a history of preying on children, or the somewhat dopey and loveable "Sucre" who just wants to be reunited with the love of his life on the outside, or the prison doctor "Sarah Tancredi" who Scofield forges an unlikely friendship (or could it be more?...watch to see) with along the way.
The show admittedly gets a little off course from the original plot (it can't feasibly take 4 seasons to break out of prison...) in the last 2 seasons (there are 4 total), but it's well worth the ride. Even for the second time around.
And now on to the news and views from the day...
I thought about simply posting the graphic below 12 times in a row and calling it a night. Following Nico Firios' (1st Team All-Name nominee) commitment to Kentucky today, Kentucky once again jumped in some of the national rankings.
The 3-star Linebacker from Florida picked Kentucky over the Louisville Cardinals earlier today, among others including Wisconsin, Cincinnati and USF. Firios is considered the 18th best inside linebacker in the country by ESPN. Again, following Firios' commitment Kentucky jumped to the #4 ranked recruiting class in the nation. One year ago, could you have ever imagined this would be happening at Kentucky? Actions speak louder than creepy Joker photoshop pictures. #StoopsEffect
Firios caught up with the Orlando Sentinel about his commitment, and according to Firios the Kentucky staff was more than a little excited. The excitement is not just saved for the YAHTZEE tweets.
“They were screaming and passing the phone around and Coach [Mark] Stoops was saying he was so excited to have someone with my character and ability joining the team,” Firios said. “He said with my commitment that would probably put them in the top five recruiting classes in the nation for 2014.”
The recruiting news has been coming furiously this week for the Kentucky coaching staff. The camp and visits from this past weekend likely sealed the deal for a number of Kentucky's biggest targets. Almost all of the recent commitments have been on the defensive side of the football, but the Cats look to be in good position to land one on the offensive side of things soon. TV Williams could very well be the next to pull the trigger and is certainly a player to keep an eye on in the next few days
. The 3-star WR from McKinney, Texas was in town last weekend and by all accounts had a great visit and became close with a few of Kentucky's current 2014 commitments. The YAHTZEE game might not be over just yet...
With the influx of talent and the rejuvenated passion for football in the Bluegrass, Kentucky will look to improve upon its rating as the 2nd worst football stadium in the SEC.
AthlonSports.com put out a ranking today, and Kentucky finished only ahead of Vanderbilt. With the news of a $110 million dollar renovation, the miraculous work of Mark Stoops and an attendance mark that is surely on the rise-- Kentucky will look to provide a much better game day atmosphere. As with any collegiate sporting event, the fans can make or break the experience. Some of the best basketball arenas and venues in the country are made that way by the rabid fan bases more so than the actual bells and whistles of the structure itself. Commonwealth will likely be adding those bells and whistles soon, but in the meantime the fan support will likely make Commonwealth a more desirable Saturday destination this fall. The current list:
Tiger Stadium, LSU
Sanford Stadium, Georgia
Neyland Stadium, Tennessee
Kyle Field, Texas A&M
Bryant-Denny Stadium, Alabama
Ben Hill Griffin Stadium, Florida
Donald W. Reynolds Razorback Stadium, Arkansas
Jordan-Hare Stadium, Auburn
Williams-Brice Stadium, South Carolina
Vaught-Hemingway Stadium, Ole Miss
Davis Wade Stadium, Mississippi State
Memorial Stadium, Missouri
13. Commonwealth Stadium, Kentucky
Vanderbilt Stadium, Vanderbilt
----- BOONE'S BUTCHER SHOP'S BOBBY KNIGHT'S ACADEMIC REPORT:
The NCAA released the APR (Academic Progress Rate) scores for the last 3 year's, and many of Kentucky's teams, including men's basketball, came out with impressive numbers. The four-year composite score for the men's basketball team was 963, which is well-above the NCAA minimum of 900
. The football team posted a score of 942, with women's basketball (976), baseball (987) and softball (976) all showing strongly as well.
John Calipari was proud of his teams' achievements, and took to his favorite form of social media to share his thoughts:
Back in May when UK's team GPA was released, Cal made a comment about what he means when he says "success rate."
"I'm proud of the hard work our guys have put in both on and off the court. When you come to Kentucky, you are either going pro or getting a degree-- or both. We call it a success rate and right now we are batting 100 percent. When you run a player's first program, it's not just about loving to play basketball; it's about teaching our kids to love learning."
Mitch Barnhart went in front of the media today to discuss the state of the athletic program in a few other areas beyond APR scores as well. Here were the highlights:
1) The Board of Directors approved a $104 million budget for the 2013-2014 fiscal year.
2) The budget includes a $3 million increase for football (yet another step in the right direction)
3) $2.4 million of the increased $3 million will go to coaches salaries (someone make sure Vince Marrow sees plenty of that)
4) Barnhart described football recruiting as going "pretty well" right now (really wish he had thrown a "YAHTZEE!" in there after the underwhelming statement)
5) UK added a new member of compliance when they hired Rachel Newman Baker, who will serve as the senior associate athletics director of compliance
. I think that means Sandy Bell 2.0 Bell will now be able to focus on men's basketball, while Newman Baker will focus more directly on football.
----- The addition of a football-specific compliance staff member and the increased budget for football coaching salaries once again displays a new level of commitment to the football program by Mitch Barnhart and the University of Kentucky.
If you build it, they will come. And in this case, if you start to put the pieces together for a more successful football program, the money and financial support will come.
Changing the pace a bit, two of Kentucky's Bluegrass-bred players are splitting time this summer working out with Kentucky while also hitting the all-star circuit. Madison Central's Dominique Hawkins and Bullit East's Derek Willis are both soaking up a summer filled with basketball in an attempt to ready their games for college basketball. The Herald Leader caught up with both future Wildcats:
"I'm looking to improve everything," Hawkins said. "I know I've got to do everything a little bit better than I did in high school."
Willis said that his main area of focus is to improve his body for the next level:
"I get in the gym whenever I can," Willis said. "Try to eat a little bit more whenever I go to meals."
As we inch closer and closer to the June 27th NBA draft, the scuttle around who will be working out where has been picking up. Nerlens Noel will reportedly work out for the Washington Wizards this weekend. Noel has already visited with the Orlando Magic, who have the #2 pick and will also be visiting the Cleveland Cavaliers (#1 pick) on June 20th. When it's all said and done, Noel will have met with all of the teams who hold the top 3 picks
. Noel will unlikely fall past the first pick, but if he does, the other two teams are doing their homework.
And in a bit of random news, the United States beat Mexico by 99 points.
And no, I'm definitely NOT talking about men's soccer. The USA's U-16 national team beat Mexico in the FIBA Americas Championships yesterday. The final score? 130-31. Sounds like it could have gone either way...