Sixteen Sweet predictions

Herald-Leader Staff WriterMarch 16, 2011 

Hollywood bad boy Charlie Sheen and the Sweet Sixteen coaches have the same thing on their minds this week:

Duh! Winning!

Just hope nobody switches out the Gatorade with tiger blood.

As for the four-day party that is the PNC/KHSAA Boys Sweet Sixteen, 16 predictions on the hoops happenings in Rupp Arena this week.

1 LeBron James tweets that he wishes he had taken his talents to Eastern, where stars play up to expectations.

2 Billy Gillispie shows up and offers Perry County Central seventh-grader Braxton Beverly a scholarship to wherever Billy G. gets a coaching job.

3 Gubernatorial candidate David Williams and running mate Richie Farmer campaign at Rupp Arena. Williams gets miffed when everybody thinks he's Richie's bodyguard.

4 Worried that Lousiville will try to lure the Sweet Sixteen to the Yum! Center, Rupp Arena considers rebranding itself the Yoo-Hoo! Center.

5 Facing green-clad Rowan County on St. Patrick's Day, Daviess County changes its nickname to the O'Panthers, and its players sport strands of spinach in their teeth.

6 Dixie Heights junior Zeke Pike, one of the top quarterback prospects in the nation, is constantly triple-teamed. Not on the court by Lexington Catholic, but off the court by UK football fans begging him to commit to the Cats.

7 The smoke alarms and sprinkler system in Rupp Arena go off when Anthony Hickey's sneakers catch fire after the Christian County speedster leads one too many fast breaks.

8 Warren Central's Tim Riley, in the Sweet Sixteen for the eighth time in 10 years, brings a La-Z-Boy recliner to coach from because Rupp Arena has become his home away from home.

9 Clark County Coach Scott Humphrey swears that the ghost of Letcher Norton, who guided Clark County to the state championship 60 years ago, rode the team bus with the Cardinals from Winchester to Lexington.

10 A University of Kentucky study proves conclusively that Wayne County's Rodney Woods and Perry Central's Allan Hatcher, who have 1,470 coaching victories between them, have indeed forgotten more basketball than the rest of us know.

11 After Bullitt East's 6-foot-8 sophomore, Derek Willis, shines in the Sweet Sixteen, Jim Cramer makes him a Mad Money hot stock pick on CNBC.

12 A survey of fans confirms that "Score the ball" is the most inane sports phrase since "giving 110 percent."

13 Lexington Catholic's team bus gets marooned in a mammoth pothole on Clays Mill Road, delaying Wednesday's 8 p.m. tip-off.

14 Dudley Hilton is all smiles at Rupp Arena. Bell County's former football coach thought his high school thrills were over when his Bobcats lost to Boyle County in the state semifinals last fall and he took a job at Pikeville College. But Hilton's daughter Jennifer refereed the Girls' Sweet Sixteen finals last weekend, and his son John Dudley is playing for Bell County in the Boys' Sweet Sixteen.

15 Despite a media ruckus with the Miami Heat on the subject, crying is allowed in the locker rooms of heartbroken teams in the Sweet Sixteen.

16 Ashland's 1961 state champs, in town for a 50th anniversary, play a pickup game against high school All-Stars at Transylvania. Larry Conley and Harold Sergent combine for 46 points to lead the Tomcats to victory.

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