A nonprofit publication of the Kentucky Center for Public Service Journalism

UK’s freshman EJ Montgomery to try for NBA Draft, hoping to be a first-rounder; but could return

By Keith Taylor Kentucky Today EJ Montgomery is going to attempt to give it a shot at the next level.   The Kentucky freshman forward declared for the NBA Draft Friday, but could opt to return based on feedback he receives from experts. Montgomery will have until May 29 to decide remain in the draft or decide to come back for a second season. EJ Montgomery (Photo by Tammie Brown/Kentucky Today) “My...

Calipari rebuilding as Nate Sestina, a graduate transfer from Bucknell, and Keion Brooks join roster

By Keith Taylor Kentucky Today Kentucky added two new faces to its roster Thursday.   Nate Sestina, a 6-foot-9, 245-pound  graduate transfer from Bucknell, will enroll as a graduate transfer next season. Sestina, a second-team All-Patriot Team performer, averaged 15.8 points and 8.5 rebounds per game last season and will be eligible for one season.   The Wildcats also signed freshman forward Keion...

Keldon Johnson will stay in NBA Draft, ending collegiate career; Jemarl Baker to transfer

By Keith Taylor Kentucky Today Keldon Johnson is following in the footsteps of Tyler Herro and PJ Washington. 
Nearly a week after declaring for the next level, Johnson announced his plans to stay in the NBA Draft, ending his collegiate career. Johnson started 36 games last season and averaged 13.5 points per game. He averaged 5.9 rebounds per game and was third on the team in both categories. Keldon...

Tyler Herro decides to stay in the NBA Draft, ending possibility of returning to UK for a second season

By Keith Taylor Kentucky Today Tyler Herro’s college career is over. 
The Kentucky guard announced Tuesday he plans to remain in the NBA Draft instead of leaving open the possibility of returning for a second season. 
“After exploring my options a little bit more and getting some immediate feedback, I’ve decided to remain in the draft,” he said. Tyler Herro (Photo by Tammie Brown/Kentucky...

Tyler Herro to test NBA waters — but would be ‘thrilled’ to return to UK to compete for championship

By Keith Taylor Kentucky Today Tyler Herro is going to test the waters.   The Kentucky freshman guard declared for the NBA Draft Friday but is leaving his options open considering his future plans. Herro plans to hire an agent and return under new NCAA guidelines regarding the draft and will have until May 29 to make a final decision.   Herro discussed his options with his family and Kentucky coach...

UK’s PJ Washington going to NBA draft, ‘ready for next step’; Hagans returning next year

By Keith Taylor Kentucky Today PJ Washington has decided to enter the NBA Draft and this time for good.   
“It’s been a little over a week since our season ended but it still hasn’t hit me that I’ve played my last game with Kentucky across my chest,” Washington said. “This place has been my home for two years and it’s hard for me to put in words how much I’ve grown in my time at...

Jamie Vaught: It’s OK to be disappointed by UK’s loss to Auburn, but stop whining about John Calipari

Interestingly, a small bunch of so-called “Monday Morning” coaches in the Big Blue Nation as well as some opinionated media folks have been complaining and howling about basketball coach John Calipari and his favored Kentucky Wildcats for failing to make a coveted trip to the 2019 NCAA Final Four after Sunday afternoon’s heartbreaking overtime loss to Auburn. Sure, we are saddened with the painful...

John Calipari agrees to long-term deal that will ensure he will finish his coaching career at UK

Coach John Calipari questions a call in Kentucky’s loss to Auburn. (Kentucky Today/Tammie Brown) By Keith Taylor Kentucky Today John Calipari will finish his coaching career with the University of Kentucky, the school announced Monday night. Calipari, 60, agreed to terms on a long-term contract after completing his 10th season as head coach with Sunday’s loss to Auburn in the Midwest Region...

Kentucky falls to Auburn in overtime, but P.J. Washington ‘gave it everything’ he had

By Keith Taylor Kentucky Today KANSAS CITY (KT) — PJ Washington left it all on the court in what could have been his final game at Kentucky. Although a national championship would have been icing on the cake, Washington did his best to carry the Wildcats on his shoulders in Kentucky’s first Big Dance in Kansas City.   “I just tried to go out there and give it everything I had,” he said....

Partnership with Maker’s Mark, Keeneland makes impact for CATS, UK student-athletes’ success

The Center for Academic Tutorial Services (CATS) is the first center of its kind in America. Now in its fifth and final year, the partnership that has helped CATS ensure University of Kentucky student-athletes have the resources necessary for success in the classroom continues to make an impact. “Education is at the heart of everything we do as an athletics department,” UK athletics director Mitch...

John Calipari hopes short-handed roster won’t be an issue for Wildcats as they prepare for Houston

By Keith Taylor Kentucky Today It’s not known if PJ Washington will make a return to the lineup when Kentucky takes on Houston in the NCAA Sweet Sixteen Friday night. Washington was seen with a walking boot as the team departed for Kansas City Wednesday afternoon. Washington wore a cast during the opening two rounds of the Big Dance last weekend in Jacksonville. He sent out a tweet earlier in the...

Kentucky advances to Sweet Sixteen with win over Wofford, 62-56; Herro gets last-basket 3-pointer

By Keith Taylor Kentucky Today JACKSONVILLE, Fla. (KT) — Nobody has made more 3-pointers in college basketball than Fletcher Magee. In his final collegiate contest, Kentucky’s defense made the Wofford standout’s performance less than memorable.   
Magee failed to make a three on 12 attempts as the Wildcats survived with a 62-56 win over the Terriers in the second round of the NCAA Tournament...

Kentucky caps regular season with 66-57 win over Florida on senior day at Rupp Arena

By Keith Taylor Kentucky Today John Calipari breathed a sigh of relief after sixth-ranked Kentucky closed out the regular season with a 66-57 win over Florida Saturday. Kentucky (26-5, 15-3 Southeastern Conference) captured its 16th win on the past 18 games and 12th consecutive win over an unranked opponent. Kentucky also swept Auburn, Mississippi State, and Vanderbilt, while splitting with third-place...

Wildcats hold off Rebels, reward Coach Cal with Mardi Gras milestone down in Oxford

By Keith Taylor Kentucky Today Kentucky remains undefeated in bounce-back games this season. The Wildcats improved to 5-0 in games coming off a loss with an 80-76 win over Mississippi Tuesday night in Oxford. Coming off a 71-52 setback to Tennessee, No. 6 Kentucky (25-5, 14-3 Southeastern Conference) limited the Rebels to just two field goals in the final two minutes to record its 10th consecutive...

As Kentucky readies for rematch with Tennessee, Calipari knows comebacks will get harder to achieve

By Keith Taylor Kentucky Today In two weeks, the postseason begins and John Calipari hopes the Wildcats learned a lesson in a 70-66 win over Arkansas Tuesday night. An overwhelming favorite against the Razorbacks, fourth-ranked Kentucky (24-4, 13-2 Southeastern Conference) fell behind early and trailed by 15 early in the second half before mounting a successful comeback down the stretch. The rally...

Jamie Vaught: With basketball season winding down, it’s time to discuss SEC’s top individual award

With UK basketball’s regular season nearly over, we can now start discussing one of SEC’s top individual awards. Who is going to be the 2019 SEC Player of the Year? Tennessee’s 6-7 junior star Grant Williams, who captured SEC Player of the Year honors last year, is attempting to make history by becoming the 10th player to win SEC Player of the Year in back-to-back seasons. The other nine SEC...

Jamie Vaught: UK hoops rivalry with Tennessee has produced numerous memorable battles

Over the years, there have been numerous memorable Kentucky-Tennessee basketball battles. In this heated rivalry series, UK fans will remember UT coaches or stars like Ray Mears, Bernard King, Ernie Grunfeld, Rodney Woods, Dale Ellis, Don DeVoe, to name several. They all gave Kentucky coaches Adolph Rupp and Joe B. Hall plenty of disappointments. Both of them had a hard time competing against Mears,...

John Calipari’s surging Wildcats focused on surprising LSU, not top-ranked Tennessee

By Keith Taylor Kentucky Today John Calipari isn’t thinking about Tennessee. The Kentucky coach is more concerned about LSU going into Tuesday night’s showdown between the two Southeastern Conference foes. The Tigers (19-4, 9-1) are one of the top surprising teams in the SEC this season and have won 12 of their last 13 games, including an exciting 83-78 win over Auburn last Saturday in Baton Rouge....

Halfway up the mountain, Cats need to stay hungry and humble — and ‘in right frame of mind’

By Keith Taylor Kentucky Today Kentucky is on a roll and John Calipari wants the Wildcats to stay on the current path of success that has led to nine straight victories.   “I’ve got to keep these guys in the right frame of mind,” Calipari said following a 76-48 win over South Carolina Tuesday night. “My job now is (to keep the team staying) hungry, yet humble. We don’t need anybody arrogant...

Cats get physical with South Carolina, coast to ninth straight victory with 76-48 win Tuesday at Rupp

By Keith Taylor Kentucky Today An overwhelming favorite, Kentucky didn’t overlook South Carolina and coasted to a 76-48 win over the Gamecocks Tuesday night. The fifth-ranked Wildcats notched their ninth straight victory, including eight straight Southeastern Conference victories since dropping a 77-75 loss to Alabama in the league opener on Jan. 5 in Tuscaloosa. Kentucky (19-3, 8-1) improved to...