A nonprofit publication of the Kentucky Center for Public Service Journalism

Ashley Scoby: Suspension of budding star Epps shows importance of accountability

By suspending his star player, UK Hoops coach Matthew Mitchell is demonstrating the kind of accountability that fans of college programs and professional leagues are calling for from their sports teams (UK Athletics Photo)   Discipline versus on-court success: With Matthew Mitchell suspending star guard (and first-team All-Southeastern Conference member) Makayla Epps on Wednesday, the latest chapter...

Ashley Scoby: For UK’s returning trio, failed run at perfection is already part of the past

Senior-to-be Alex Poythress has been cleared to jog and he expects to be full-speed for preseason action next fall (Jamie Vaught Photo)   Although it’s technically April, and less than a month removed from the Final Four, the end of Kentucky’s basketball season is officially “last” season.   All three core returners – Tyler Ulis, Alex Poythress and Marcus Lee – talked to the media...

Ashley Scoby: For UK's returning trio, failed run at perfection is already part of the past

Senior-to-be Alex Poythress has been cleared to jog and he expects to be full-speed for preseason action next fall (Jamie Vaught Photo)   Although it’s technically April, and less than a month removed from the Final Four, the end of Kentucky’s basketball season is officially “last” season.   All three core returners – Tyler Ulis, Alex Poythress and Marcus Lee – talked to the media...

Ashley Scoby: Following final spring practice, Stoops sees signs Cats are on the right track

Kentucky coach Mark Stoops said he was generally pleased with the progress his team made during spring practice, but he declined to name a starting quarterback (UK Athletics Photo / Chet White)   In a sport that’s built off bone-crushing tackles and brute strength, going “through the motions” as a football player is perhaps even more unacceptable than in any other sport. So consistency,...

Ashley Scoby: UK spring football update comes with a new quarterback controversy

Last year’s starter at quarterback, Patrick Towles, outplayed Drew Barker in Saturday’s open scrimmage, but head coach Mark Stoops wasn’t ready to name a starter (UK Athletics Photo)   Kentucky football is much like being a fan of the Chicago Cubs: “This is our year” gets tossed around each preseason like it’s a requirement. And with head coach Mark Stoops at the helm for...

Ashley Scoby: Kentucky’s historical season provided highest of highs and lowest of lows

Kentucky’s Dakari Johnson and Aaron Harrison apply defensive pressure to national Player of the Year Frank Kaminsky during Saturday’s semifinal game (UK Athletics Photo / Chet White)   As far as sports go, it’s always been all or nothing for me: either zero interest, or an all-consuming obsession.   The first time I remember even paying attention to the NCAA tournament was in...

Ashley Scoby: Kentucky's historical season provided highest of highs and lowest of lows

Kentucky’s Dakari Johnson and Aaron Harrison apply defensive pressure to national Player of the Year Frank Kaminsky during Saturday’s semifinal game (UK Athletics Photo / Chet White)   As far as sports go, it’s always been all or nothing for me: either zero interest, or an all-consuming obsession.   The first time I remember even paying attention to the NCAA tournament was in...

Ashley Scoby: More mature Cauley-Stein prepares for move to next level after loss

Willie Cauley-Stein scored just two points in Kentucky’s national semifinal loss to Wisconsin. He said he will probably enter the NBA draft this summer (UK Athletics Photo)   From a small town in Kansas, to being disappointed in a 38-1 season at one of the most storied college basketball programs in history, Willie Cauley-Stein has come a long way.   Plenty has been made of Cauley-Stein’s...

Ashley Scoby: Perfect no more, Wisconsin brings an end to Kentucky’s dream season

Trey Lyles looks for an opening against Wisconsin in the NCAA semifinal round Saturday (UK Athletics Photo/Bob Donnan-USA TODAY)   Kentucky basketball’s pursuit of perfection would have made for great cinema all along. But the ending is only reminiscent of a Shakespearean tragedy.   After a 38-0 start – the best in men’s Division I men’s college basketball – the show that captivated...

Ashley Scoby: Perfect no more, Wisconsin brings an end to Kentucky's dream season

Trey Lyles looks for an opening against Wisconsin in the NCAA semifinal round Saturday (UK Athletics Photo/Bob Donnan-USA TODAY)   Kentucky basketball’s pursuit of perfection would have made for great cinema all along. But the ending is only reminiscent of a Shakespearean tragedy.   After a 38-0 start – the best in men’s Division I men’s college basketball – the show that captivated...

Ashley Scoby: Looks can really be deceiving when seldom-used reserve Willis is involved

Derek Willis drives on Pikeville during an exhibition game prior to the season (UK Athletics Photo)   An online search for tweets about Kentucky forward Derek Willis yields some interesting 140-character bombs.   “Kentucky won by enough to have Derek Willis play!” “Wasted talent.” “Derek Willis doesn’t even look happy that they just won.”   [widgets_on_pages id=“Ashley”] For...

Ashley Scoby: Very superstitious, writing’s on the wall, it’s no wonder these Cats are 38-0

Devon Booker (left) likes to eat the same foods before games while Tyler Ulis wears only white shirts during shoot-arounds (UK Athletics Photo)   If it ain’t broke, don’t fix it. Since not a whole lot has been broken so far during Kentucky’s 38-0 season, which continues Saturday night against Wisconsin in the national semi-finals, several of the players have stuck to what’s worked when...

Ashley Scoby: Very superstitious, writing's on the wall, it's no wonder these Cats are 38-0

Devon Booker (left) likes to eat the same foods before games while Tyler Ulis wears only white shirts during shoot-arounds (UK Athletics Photo)   If it ain’t broke, don’t fix it. Since not a whole lot has been broken so far during Kentucky’s 38-0 season, which continues Saturday night against Wisconsin in the national semi-finals, several of the players have stuck to what’s worked when...

Ashley Scoby: Badgers mirror Wildcats' calm, but both teams know when to flip the switch

Kentucky has been a loose team during its unbeaten run this season, but when Wisconsin met the media Thursday, they didn’t seem to be feeling any pressure either (Jamie Vaught Photo)   When Kentucky unleashed a full-court press against Bob Huggins’ West Virginia team that was known for its own press, the Wildcats were giving another team a taste of its own medicine.   Now, when 38-0...

Ashley Scoby: Badgers mirror Wildcats’ calm, but both teams know when to flip the switch

Kentucky has been a loose team during its unbeaten run this season, but when Wisconsin met the media Thursday, they didn’t seem to be feeling any pressure either (Jamie Vaught Photo)   When Kentucky unleashed a full-court press against Bob Huggins’ West Virginia team that was known for its own press, the Wildcats were giving another team a taste of its own medicine.   Now, when 38-0...

Ashley Scoby: For Lyles, trip to Indy for Final Four match with Badgers a dream come true

Trey Lyles cuts down the nets after Kentucky defeated Notre Dame in the Elite Eight to earn a trip to his hometown on Indianapolis for the Final Four (UK Athletics Photo / Chet White)   Long before he tweeted pictures of an NCAA regional trophy, before he tweeted about a snow day at UK and before he Instagrammed pictures of himself and his “brothers” going through the daily life of a Kentucky...

Ashley Scoby: Luck of the Irish runs out as Kentucky now just two wins away from title

Karl-Anthony Towns dominated with inside scoring Saturday in Kentucky’s NCAA Elite Eight matchup with Notre Dame (UK Athletics Photo)   “Don’t miss,” Andrew Harrison told himself as he walked to the line for two free throws. His 37-0 team was tied 66-66 with Notre Dame in the Midwest Regional Final Saturday night, and six seconds potentially remained in his undefeated season.   “Those...

Ashley Scoby: Road to season of perfection had genesis in Bahamas exhibition defeat

Tyler Ulis says he remembers Kentucky’s exhibition loss mainly because he missed some critical free throws and three-point attempts near the end (UK Athletics Photo)   CLEVELAND — The concrete answer for “how to beat Kentucky” requires a run-on sentence, and a look back to August.   This team can lose – and it has – when they have played six games in eight days, against...

Ashley Scoby: Floreal's dance moves have become part of Wildcats' pregame ritual

Former UK walk-on EJ Floreal is not only the team’s best dancer, he says he’s the best dunker, too (UK Athletics Photo)   Every team has its tics, its superstitions, its rituals. For the undefeated Kentucky Wildcats, their’s is EJ Floreal.   No one remembers how it started, or which game it preceded. But somebody on the team pushed Floreal in the middle of the pregame huddle...

Ashley Scoby: Floreal’s dance moves have become part of Wildcats’ pregame ritual

Former UK walk-on EJ Floreal is not only the team’s best dancer, he says he’s the best dunker, too (UK Athletics Photo)   Every team has its tics, its superstitions, its rituals. For the undefeated Kentucky Wildcats, their’s is EJ Floreal.   No one remembers how it started, or which game it preceded. But somebody on the team pushed Floreal in the middle of the pregame huddle...