A nonprofit publication of the Kentucky Center for Public Service Journalism

Cats turn focus to selection Sunday after tough loss to Tennessee in SEC tournament semi-final

By Keith Taylor Kentucky Today Kentucky won’t know its seeding for the NCAA Tournament until Sunday night but John Calipari isn’t making any early predictions regarding a possible No. 1 seed. 
“I don’t know — I mean, there’s a bunch of teams that would say it,” he said following an 82-78 loss to Tennessee in the Southeastern Conference Tournament semifinals Saturday. “I’d...

Gambling awareness, March Madness share month; NCAA Tournament largest gambling event of the year

In March, the largest gambling event of the year – the NCAA men’s basketball tournament – begins. March also is national Problem Gambling Awareness Month (PGAM). If the Kentucky General Assembly passes House Bill 175, and it is signed into law by Gov. Matt Bevin, sports betting in Kentucky will become legal. Even more betting on basketball will occur. The Kentucky Council on Problem Gambling...

Kentucky Wildcats seek to boost its NCAA resume against No. 9 North Carolina in Chicago

By Keith Taylor Kentucky Today Kentucky has yet to beat a ranked opponent this season. The Wildcats will get a chance to boost their NCAA Tournament resume against No. 9 North Carolina Saturday in the CBS Sports Classic in Chicago. In its last outing against a ranked foe, the No. 19 Wildcats (8-2) failed the test. In the worst setback of the John Calipari era, Kentucky dropped a humiliating 118-84...

Mingione, Wildcats look ahead after failing to make NCAA tournament

Kentucky will move into a new $49 million baseball stadium next season after playing at Cliff Hagan Stadium for the past 50 years. (UK Athletics Photo) By Keith Taylor Kentucky Today Kentucky baseball coach Nick Mingione thought his team did enough to earn a bid to the NCAA Tournament. The Wildcats weren’t part of a field of 64 teams that were invited to the Big Dance when bids were handed out Monday. Kentucky...

Cheek powers Kentucky past Oregon in Super Regional opener

Members of the Kentucky softball team celebrate a win over Oregon early this morning (UK Athletics Photo) The No. 16 Kentucky softball team exploded for nine runs on 10 hits against the best pitching staff in the PAC-12 to take game one of the Eugene Super Regional 9-6 over the No. 1 Oregon Ducks on Thursday night at Jane Sanders Stadium. With the Game 1 win, Kentucky is now just one game away from...

Kentucky takes on underdog role against Oregon in Super Regional

By Keith Taylor Kentucky Today Kentucky hopes to continue its postseason momentum against top-seed Oregon in the Super Regionals set for Thursday-Saturday in Eugene. The Wildcats rolled to wins over the University of Illinois-Chicago and a pair of victories over Notre Dame in the opening round of the NCAA Tournament last weekend at John Cropp Stadium in Lexington. The opener is set for 9 p.m. Thursday...

Pitching, defense a key for Kentucky softball team in NCAA Tournament

Grace Baalman will anchor the Kentucky pitching staff in this weekend’s Lexington Regional at John Cropp Stadium. (UK Athletics Photo) By Keith Taylor Kentucky Today When it comes down to it, pitching and defense win championships and Kentucky coach Rachel Lawson hopes the Wildcats have enough experience to make a serious run in the NCAA Tournament. “The postseason is about pitching and defense,”...

Keith Taylor: NCAA: Calipari enjoying the journey with maturing Wildcats

Kentucky coach John Calipari never lost faith in his team, even when the Wildcats suffered four straight losses in February. Kentucky has won five straight games in the postseason. (Kentucky Today/Keith Taylor) BOISE — John Calipari is not one to make comparisons, but his current Kentucky squad is steadily becoming one of his favorite teams. Never mind the Wildcats endured a rare four-game slide...

NCAA Tournament: Defense giving Kentucky an identity thus far in the postseason

Kentucky freshmen Hamidou Diallo, left, and Shai Gillgeous-Alexander, right, share a laugh during an open practice last week at Taco Bell Arena in Boise, Idaho. The Wildcats are having fun on both ends of the court and will continue play in the NCAA Tournament Thursday in Atlanta, Georgia. (Kentucky Today/Keith Taylor) By Keith Taylor Kentucky Today BOISE — Kentucky has finally established an identity. “Our...

No Bull: Kentucky blasts winded Buffalo to reach NCAA Sweet Sixteen

Kentucky guard Shai Gilgeous-Alexander celebrates during the Wildcats’ 95-75 win over Buffalo Saturday in Boise. The Wildcats will take on either UMBC or Kansas State in the South Region semifinals Thursday in Atlanta. (UK Athletics Photo) By Keith Taylor Kentucky Today BOISE (KT) — Kentucky is still standing and dancing in the NCAA Tournament. The Wildcats (26-10) stayed perfect in the postseason...

NCAA: Calipari, Cats seek to end Buffalo’s historic run in tourney

Kentucky coach John Calipari answers a question during a press conference Friday at Taco Bell Arena. The Wildcats take on Buffalo in the second round of the NCAA Tournament Saturday in Boise. (Kentucky Today/Keith Taylor) By Keith Taylor Kentucky Today BOISE (KT) — Buffalo made history Thursday night and Kentucky hopes to end the trend in the second round of the NCAA Tournament Saturday. The Bulls...

NCAA: Long three-point streak ends, but Cats oust Davidson in tourney opener

Kevin Knox scored 25 points to lead Kentucky to a 78-73 win over Davidson Thursday night at Taco Bell Arena in Boise. (UK Athletics Photo) By Keith Taylor Kentucky Today BOISE (KT) — The first one is out of the way. Kentucky (25-10) advanced to the second round of the NCAA Tournament with a 78-73 triumph over outmanned Davidson Thursday night, setting up a potential matchup against Arizona in the...

Jamie Vaught: March is upon us, some observations, statistics and tidbits as we head into the ‘Madness’

• It’s really hard to believe that two of UK’s best players — Kevin Knox and Shai Gilgeous-Alexander who earned first-team or second-team All-SEC honors as voted by the coaches — were left out by the Associated Press on its All-SEC teams. Weird, huh?  If my late brother-in-law, who was a head basketball coach on the high school level for a couple of years, was alive today, he would...

Kentucky State Parks offering opportunities to watch March Madness Basketball at several park locations

College basketball fans have several options to watch their favorite teams during March at Kentucky State Parks. Natural Bridge State Resort Park near Slade has Trail’s End Tavern with TV sets and a variety of beverages available. The tavern is inside Hemlock Lodge. Trail’s End Tavern at Natural Bridge State Resort Park (Photo from KAP) Jenny Wiley State Resort Park at Prestonsburg also has...

NCAA Tournament: Calipari wants Cats to stay in the moment and not look ahead

Kentucky coach John Calipari wants the Wildcats to focus on the here and now going into the NCAA Tournament. (Kentucky Today/Tammie Brown) By Keith Taylor Kentucky Today BOISE (KT) — Kentucky has been perfect in the postseason, but it doesn’t matter if you ask John Calipari. “There’s no one that has a record now and you just go play each game,” Calipari said. “You don’t look out...

NCAA: Calipari not surprised by his team’s seeding in Big Dance

Kentucky coach John Calipari wasn’s surprised by his team’s placement in the NCAA Tournament. The Wildcats are a No 5 seed in the South Region, with overall top seed Virginia. (Keith Taylor/Kentucky Today) By Keith Taylor Kentucky Today John Calipari wasn’t surprised when his team’s NCAA destination was revealed Sunday. “I would have been shocked if we got a four seed,” Calipari...

Wildcats want to make more history in NCAA Super Regional series against rival Louisville

By Keith Taylor KyForward Senior Sports Editor Kentucky made history last weekend in the opening round of the NCAA Tournament. In order to reach another milestone, the Wildcats will need to get past their biggest rival in the Super Regionals. Kentucky opens a best-of-three series at No. 7 Louisville Friday at Jim Patterson Stadium. A second game will be Saturday and a finale on Sunday, if necessary....

Wildcats overcome weather delay, N.C. State to earn program’s first trip to NCAA Super Regionals

By Keith Taylor KyForward Senior Sports Writer Securing a first-ever trip to the Super Regionals took longer than expected, but the weather delay was well worth the wait for the Wildcats. Kentucky, the top seed in the Lexington Regional, climbed its way out of the losers bracket and rallied to beat North Carolina State 10-5 for the second time in as many days to advance to the NCAA Super Regionals...

Top-seeded Wildcats oust Indiana, avenge loss to N.C. State to stay alive in NCAA Tournament

By Keith Taylor KyForward Senior Sports Writer Kentucky needed two wins to stay alive in the NCAA Tournament and the top-seeded Wildcats accomplished just that Sunday. Coming off a 4-3 loss to North Carolina State Saturday, Kentucky ousted Indiana 14-9 in the opener and then avenged a earlier-tournament loss to the Wolfpack with an 8-6 triumph in the nightcap to force a second and decisive regional...

Hjelle’s pitching, stellar defense propel Wildcats to 6-4 victory over Ohio in NCAA Regional opener

By Keith Taylor KyForward Senior Sports Writer Kentucky turned to its ace to lead the Wildcats to victory in the opening round of the NCAA Tournament Friday and Sean Hjelle delivered. The Southeastern Conference Pitcher of the Year threw seven strong innings to lead the Wildcats to a 6-4 triumph over Ohio University at Cliff Hagan Stadium. Kentucky pitcher Sean Hjelle threw seven strong innings in...