A nonprofit publication of the Kentucky Center for Public Service Journalism

Incoming UK basketball transfers Sarr, Toppin jump for joy after getting news of immediate eligibility

By Keith Taylor Kentucky Today Incoming University of Kentucky transfers Olivier Sarr and Jacob Toppin jumped for joy after receiving news concerning their eligibility late Wednesday. Sarr and Toppin were cleared to play this season by the NCAA and Southeastern Conference. “They were both hopping and skipping out of my office after getting the news because they’ve been waiting on this day,” UK...

Mack excited, Louisville players ‘relieved’ to finally have tipoff date for upcoming basketball season

By Russ Brown Kentucky Today Louisville basketball coach Chris Mack will be dealing with some massive scheduling headaches for the 2020-21 season during the next week or so, but he’s not complaining. Far from it. Mack was just glad to get the news Wednesday night that the NCAA had finally decided when teams can tip off the season, bumping the starting day back two weeks from Nov. 10 to Nov. 25...

WKU cross country program moves forward with fall season; Hilltoppers open campaign Sept. 18

The Western Kentucky University cross country program plans to move forward with its fall season. The team is still awaiting the NCAA’s decision on a fall NCAA cross country championship, with a ruling set to be made later this month. WKU is set to return 16 runners, while welcoming seven newcomers to the program. (WKU photo) WKU is currently scheduled to open its season on Sept. 18 at the Mountains...

West Virginia transfer Brandon Knapper granted waiver by NCAA for immediate eligibility at EKU

Eastern Kentucky University basketball head coach A.W. Hamilton has announced that West Virginia transfer Brandon Knapper has been granted a waiver by the NCAA that makes him immediately eligible to compete. A 6-0 guard from Ontario, California, Knapper played the past two seasons at West Virginia. He appeared in 27 games for the Mountaineers last season, averaging 2.6 points and earning second team...

EKU baseball star A.J. Lewis signs contract with Colorado Rockies; Chicago native batted .451 in 2020

Eastern Kentucky University star catcher A.J. Lewis has signed a contract with the Colorado Rockies. “Being a professional baseball player is a dream come true,” Lewis said. Lewis was on the Buster Posey National Collegiate Catcher of the Year watch list in 2019 and 2020. He hit .303 with 45 runs scored, 10 doubles, nine home runs, a team-best 49 runs batted in and 17 stolen bases in 2019. EKU...

UK’s Barnhart says ‘safety’ major priority as SEC gives green light to campus workouts starting June 8

By Keith Taylor Kentucky Today The Southeastern Conference has given member institutions the green light to allow student-athletes back on campus beginning June 8. University of Kentucky athletics director Mitch Barnhart said the school will work with local and state officials to make a final determination when student-athletes can return to the school and resume voluntary workouts under “strict...

Billy Reed: Good and bad news for sports, but the coronavirus rules — and the rules are changing

A few weeks ago, the National Football League conducted its first virtual draft, and the Cincinnati Bengals, surprising absolutely nobody, used its No. 1 pick to take Joe Burrow, who won the Heisman Trophy while leading LSU to the national collegiate championship. Ordinarily, that would have been a huge story in these parts, with arguments raging on the sports radio talk shows about whether Burrow...

UK softball standout Autumn Humes to return in 2021; using extra year granted by NCAA

University of Kentucky softball standout Autumn Humes on Tuesday announced her plans to return to the Wildcats for 2021. Humes was a senior in 2020, but with the extra year of eligibility granted by the NCAA, the Arkansas native has decided to play for Kentucky again in 2021. Humes has appeared in 90 games for the Wildcats during her career as a pitcher and designated player. Humes this past season...

Billy Reed: We have no choice but to make best of it and hope that, in the end, coronavirus does not win

Broadway has gone dark, a couple of Disney theme parks have shut down, and professional sports leagues have ended their seasons prematurely. Even more concerning, hospitals are being overwhelmed, the airlines industry is on life support, the Stock Market is tanking, and our government seems completely befuddled by what to do about this worldwide scourge known as the Coronavirus. To the shock and dismay...

Billy Reed: Don’t underestimate the Dayton Flyers — and keep your eye on Obi; could be a great story

I was there the night in 1967 when Dayton’s Dan Obravac jumped center against 7-foot-2 UCLA sophomore Lew Alcindor (later Kareem Abdul-Jabbar) in the NCAA tournament championship game in Louisville’s Freedom Hall. Nobody expected the Flyers to win, unless left-handed forward Donnie May scored 50 or so. He didn’t, of course, but had a respectable 21 in UCLA’s 79-64 victory. Everybody was happy...

Texas Tech pulls away in second half, posts 72-57 win over NKU in NCAA Tournament on Friday

TULSA, Okla. — Texas Tech used tough defense and projected NBA lottery pick Jarrett Culver’s superlative offensive performance to eliminate Northern Kentucky from the NCAA Tournament on Friday. Culver finished with 29 points, eight rebounds and seven assists to lead No. 3 seed Texas Tech past 14th-seeded NKU by a 72-57 score in the opening round of the West Regional at the BOK Center. The 6-foot-6...

Oregon’s run-rule victory in decisive Eugene finale ends Kentucky’s season

Kentucky pitcher Erin Rethlake reacts after watching Oregon erupt for seven runs in the second inning Saturday night in Eugene, Oregon. (UK Athletics Photo) By Keith Taylor Kentucky Today It took just five innings for Oregon to end Kentucky’s season. DJ Sanders hit a grand slam in a seven-run second inning to propel the Oregon softball team to the women’s College World Series following an 11-1...

Report says Xavier’s Chris Mack will become University of Louisville’s new basketball coach

By Russ Brown Kentucky Today The long-talked-about hiring of Xavier’s Chris Mack as the new University of Louisville head men’s basketball coach is apparently coming to fruition. Citing an unidentified source “with direct knowledge of the deal,” Courier-Journal reported Tuesday afternoon that Mack and U of L have agreed to terms on a seven-year deal. The move comes as no surprise...

Calipari, Wildcats go about their business preparing for season amid college recruiting scandal

By Keith Taylor Kentucky Today John Calipari was pressed to delve into the FBI investigation into several college basketball programs, one which included instate rival Louisville, during Kentucky’s annual media day Thursday at Memorial Coliseum. Calipari didn’t dodge several questions and touched on a subject that led to Louisville coach Rick Pitino’s suspension and exposed other collegiate coaches...

Louisville places Pitino, Jurich on administrative leave in wake of federal bribery allegations

University of Louisville head men’s basketball coach Rick Pitino and long-time athletics director Tom Jurich have been placed on administrative leave following allegations of bribery resulting from an investigation by the U.S. Attorney’s Southern District office in New York and the FBI. The announcement was made Wednesday afternoon during a news conference conducted by Louisville interim...

Statute unveiled of famed coach Roy Kidd, spent 39 years at EKU, is in College Football Hall of Fame

Eastern Kentucky University unveiled a long-anticipated statue of College Football Hall of Fame coach Roy Kidd on Saturday.   The statue of the man who won 314 games as the head coach of the Colonels is located in the north end zone, overlooking the field at Roy Kidd Stadium.   Private funds have been donated specifically for the project over the last two years.    Kidd retired from his coaching...

Billy Reed: ‘Strippergate’ is repugnant but so are NCAA’s Draconian penalties against UofL basketball

The head of the NCAA Committee on Infractions described the “Strippergate” scandal at the University of Louisville as “repugnant,” and I don’t know of anybody who would disagree with that. Unfortunately, however, that same description may be applied to the Draconian penalties the NCAA has levied against Coach Rick Pitino’s basketball program. Simply put, the punishment exceeds the transgressions....

NCAA lowers the boom on UofL basketball program; vacating 2013 national championship a possibility

By Russ Brown KyForward correspondent LOUISVILLE — If University of Louisville fans want to get one last look at the Cardinals’ 2013 NCAA championship and the 2012 Final Four banners that are hanging in the KFC Yum! Center, maybe a tour of the facility this summer would be in order. Because the banners might not be there by the time the 2017-18 season gets underway. That is the worst-case...

Mouth guards an important — and often forgotten — part of safety equipment for sports enthusiasts

Dr. Rodrigo Fuentealba Special to KyForward One piece of safety equipment often ignored when purchasing sporting goods is the mouth guard. Each year, more than five million teeth are avulsed (come out of the socket) due to trauma. The cost to treat an avulsed tooth, over a lifetime, can range from $5,000 to $20,000. Not only do mouth guards reduce the possibility of dental injuries, they reduce the...

Five NCAA events, including men’s basketball tourney, scheduled to be held in Lexington

The University of Kentucky will play host to five NCAA events – one national championship and four preliminary round competitions – from 2020-22 in the sports of rifle, outdoor track and field, men’s basketball, cross country and gymnastics, the NCAA announced Tuesday. “We are honored to earn the right to host these five NCAA events in the coming years,” said Mitch Barnhart, UK Director...