By - Harold Combs
First, I want to wish my son ,Andy Happy Birthday and RN daughter-in-law Melanie, a great Nurse's Day. Can't forget to mention my main man, grandson Maddox.
Big Blue Nation only has two questions right now, when is Andrew Wiggins going to announce and more importantly, which school will he be playing for next season? Don't know the answer to either at this time and may not by May 15. I'll go out on a limb and say that his father will make the announcement thru the media without any fanfare. I wouldn't be surprised if his father will not be the one to tell the coaches of the schools that he does not select.
Very unusual to say the least about Wiggins' waiting and keeping everyone in suspense. Still think it is up in the air, I know BBN doesn't like to hear this, but it is better than knowing Kentucky has already been dropped. Don't know what will be the deciding factor(s), but I think it has come down to his parents (Florida State), UK/UNC and I still have not discarded Wichita State, laugh if you will, but the last chance to play with his brother? You have to admit, that has to have crossed his mind during all of this fanfare and remember, his brother said several weeks ago his decision would "shock" everyone. Will BBN know the answers by May 16th?
Prayers and a speedy recovery for UK football player Ashley Lowery, recovering from a terrible car accident in Georgia over the weekend.
Conner High School Senior quarterback Drew Barker will be making his college decision this Friday, 3:30 PM at Conner High School. He has invited everyone out for the announcement. This has to be hopefully a hint of excitement for the Kentucky faithful. Would not expect him to ask for a large turnout in the Bluegrass State to announce uh? Tennessee or heaven forbid, USC and Steve "Superior" Spurrior. I like Mark Stoops chances to get this quarterback enrolled in Lexington.
Saturday marked the dedication ceremonies of the 9.5 million dollar softball complex on the campus of University of Kentucky adjacent to Commonwealth Stadium. The host site of the 2013 SEC Softball Tournament was named John Cropp Stadium. In honor of John Cropp, a 50 year veteran of athletics including the last 20 in an athletic administrator's capacity at the University of Kentucky, Athletic Director Mitch Barnhart made the decision based on the love and dedication that Cropp had for the University softball program as well as for the students and staff. Mr. Cropp was overwhelmed with the announcement as it was being made over the public address system prior to Saturday's game with Florida. The ladies went on to defeat the # 3 ranked Gators by a score of 4-2 to even the weekend series.
The ladies went into Sunday afternoon for a series winning game with Gators of Florida and a chance to move up the rankings from their present # 18 spot, however, the Gators took a 6-3 win over the Lady Cats to take the series 2 games to 1.
This week kicks off the SEC Softball Tourney at John Cropp Stadium on the Kentucky campus. Games begin on Wednesday and continue thru the weekend. The ladies ended with a big win over Alabama this past weekend and hopefully can run off a string of 4-5 wins this week to advance to the NCAA tourney..
Coach Gary Henderson diamond kids have had a rough go of late and really needed that walk off win against Arkansas on Saturday to keep from being swept by the Hogs.
The Cats have a solid team, but have really been in a slump recently. Watching only innings 7-8 of the last game of the series with the Razorbacks, they really seemed to struggle at the plate, especially going after bad pitches after getting behind in the count.
Hope Coach Henderson can push some correct buttons on the Wildcats and get them on the upswing going into this week, the Cats play Wright State on Tuesday, then welcome # 1 ranked Vanderbilt, with a 21-1 record, for a weekend series that could get Kentucky back on their feet with a couple of wins or a sweep of the Commodores.
It seems that the SEC is just as strong in baseball top to bottom as they are in football. Don't think any other conference can make that statement.
Some very good talent on hand at the John C. Combs Arena last Friday night for the 9th Annual Appalachian All-Star Games. Three games featuring players from the 12th thru the 16th Regions were on hand to showcase their abilities and they didn't disappoint.
We appreciate all the players and coaches for their support of the annual all-star games and hope that it helps the players gain more recognition as they get the opportunity to play against some of the most talented players in every position, from all across the Eastern half of the state.
I also hope that it enables each of the players to develop lasting friendships because of a night of playing with your some of your normal opponents in a more fun atmosphere.
Justin Johnson of Perry Central won the dunk competition and Jordan Fox of Jackson County won the 3 point shooting competition.
Some coaching openings in the central and eastern part of the state that are still vacant, as far as I know, at this time.
Breathitt County, Shelby Valley, Lee County, Montgomery County,
Hazard, Wolfe County,
They are a flyin'. Players could be moving around I've been told, and this is strictly rumors without any confirmation from the players or parents. So don't take all this for gospel, but don't be surprised if it does happen.!
Looks like the schools that are being talked about the most in regard to having players enroll at their school are located right here in the 14th Region, mainly in a two county area.
If you can't guess this, you don't follow high school basketball in the 14th very closely. !
Hearing that one school may be getting a really good sophomore next school year. The young player that I am thinking of has supposedly been invited to tryout for the 16 and under USA team. Remember the name Quentin Goodin, told by a couple of sources that he is very good.!
Hearing that another local player may be going from one district school to another in the same region, 14th. Also, look for the Lions of Cordia to right back in the thick of things next season with the restored eligibility of a couple of players that sat out last year and the return of 2-3 really athletic players.!
One thing to keep in mind with all of this guessing who is going where and when,etc. It really doesn't matter until they enroll in school, then we may know who is playing for who!
I feel that the mountains or Eastern Kentucky over the next 3-5 years could land one or two players, possibly each year, on the Kentucky team that plays in the Lions Club' Kentucky vs Indiana series in Louisville and Indianapolis.
These kids are also starting to get some solid recognition from the college scouts in the state as well as the national scouts. I believe at this present time, considering the youth of a lot of the players, we could possibly have anywhere from 5 to 10 low Division 1 to high Division 1 level players over the same time period.