▪ Give it up for ex-Florida coach Billy Donovan, with his two college national titles, who in his first year in the NBA has the Oklahoma City Thunder peaking at the right time. Having a pair of guys named Kevin Durant and Russell Westbrook helps the cause, of course, but OKC has won three straight playoff road games — two at San Antonio and one (Monday night) at Golden State.
▪ Wouldn’t it be something if, after all of John Calipari’s draft picks at Kentucky, the one who ended up having the most impact in the NBA playoffs was the one who never played a game at Kentucky. Take a bow, Enes Kanter, who has played a key role coming off the bench for Oklahoma City.
▪ Would the last one to leave the Kentucky women’s basketball program please turn out the lights?
▪ Mickie DeMoss is back in the SEC. The former UK women’s head coach is leaving Louisiana Tech to become an assistant at LSU.
▪ Kentucky’s new inside linebackers coach Matt House said on Tom Leach’s radio show Monday that the coach who has had the most influence on his career is not a college coach but an NFL coach. House chose Steve Spagnuolo, whom House assisted for three years with the St. Louis Rams. Not a bad choice. Spagnuolo was defensive coordinator of the 2007 Super Bowl champion New York Giants and is currently back with the Giants in the same position.
▪ Last Saturday at Nippert Stadium, in just its fourth home game, expansion team FC Cincinnati broke the United Soccer League attendance record when a crowd of 23,375 showed up to watch it beat the Pittsburgh Riverhounds 1-0. FC Cincinnati held the previous record of 20,497 for a game against Louisville.
▪ I expect that any day now the Reds will hold bullpen tryouts for the general public.
▪ Michigan’s Jim Harbaugh is holding 35 satellite football camps in 20 states, including Hawaii, this summer. Willie Nelson doesn’t tour that much.
▪ Did you see where the losing team in Ohio State’s spring football game had to shovel mulch last weekend? Urban Meyer said put those losers to work.
▪ Next summer, Alabama offensive tackle Cam Robinson was expecting to be standing on a stage hugging NFL commissioner Roger Goodell as one of the top five picks in the draft. Tuesday, Robinson was sitting in a Louisiana jail cell on weapons and drugs charges.
▪ I sure hope this is the year I am named to one of the 10,000 college football “Watch Lists” we will hear about over the next couple of months.
▪ Too bad trainer Steve Asmussen decided not to run third-place Kentucky Derby finisher Gun Runner in the Preakness. The last time Asmussen finished third in the Derby, he brought Curlin back to nip Street Sense at the wire in the 2007 Preakness.
▪ The biggest surprise in the Marques Bolden recruiting saga will occur if the Texas center actually does announce his decision on Thursday.
▪ As of last year, Notre Dame was still paying former head football coach Charlie Weis (fired in 2009) more money than it was paying current head coach Brian Kelly.
▪ The website FanGraphs contracted crowdsourcing to rank Major League baseball’s television broadcast teams 1-to-32 since the Dodgers and White Sox have home and road crews. The Reds’ broadcast team ranked 28th.
▪ Speaking at Ole Miss’ commencement, former NBC news anchor Tom Brokaw joked, “I’m so relieved to be speaking to a graduating class from Ole Miss. If I were speaking at Alabama, I’d have to use smaller words and shorter sentences.”
The University of Alabama was not amused. It released a statement touting its academic credentials, because in this day and age no one can take a joke.
▪ The annual Dick Vitale Gala last weekend in Sarasota raised $2.8 million for pediatric cancer. Say what you want about Dick, he knows how to get it done for a great cause, baby!