Mark Story

Mark Story: The Orange Globe Awards

Freshman forward Michael Kidd-Gilchrist (14) has saved his best games for Kentucky's biggest stages so far this season.
Freshman forward Michael Kidd-Gilchrist (14) has saved his best games for Kentucky's biggest stages so far this season.

At the 69th Golden Globe Awards in Hollywood later this month, there will be a "Luxury Gift Lounge" filled with goodies.

Among other things, Golden Globe nominees will receive "an exclusive swag bag" that contains hand-crafted jewelry, bath and body products, hair accessories, fine-art photography, designer stationery, journals and "other accoutrements."

Total value: $800.

Here in Kentucky, nominees for the Orange Globe Awards — my annual mid-season Kentucky college basketball honors — will receive the honor of seeing their names in the Lexington Herald-Leader.

Total value: Priceless.

Now on to the show.

Best actor


Isaiah Cannon, Murray State. For unbeaten MSU (15-0), the junior guard (17.6 points, 3.6 rebounds, 4.0 assists) has been stone-cold money in the clutch. Cannon hit a trey to force a second overtime in Murray's eventual victory over Southern Mississippi in the finals of the Great Alaska Shootout. He sealed the Racers' road upset of then-No. 20 Memphis with a pair of late foul shots.

Anthony Davis, Kentucky. Proving every bit as good as his recruiting hype, the elastic freshman big man (12.7 ppg; 10.6 rpg; 4.5 blocks) has eight double-doubles already, including four in a row.

Michael Kidd-Gilchrist, Kentucky. UK freshman (13.9 ppg; 7.9 rpg, 2 assists) plays with ferocity and has a knack for taking command of big stages. In Cats games against North Carolina, Indiana and Louisville, MKG averaged 19.7 points and 13 rebounds.

And the Orange Globe goes to ...

Michael Kidd-Gilchrist

Best actress


Bria Goss, Kentucky. The McDonald's All-American and reigning Indiana Miss Basketball has been every bit as good (12.2 ppg, 5.2 rpg) as advertised as a freshman.

A'dia Mathies, Kentucky. Versatile junior guard (15.7 ppg; 5.5 rpg; 2.2 assists; 3.3 steals) is at her best against the best. Mathies riddled her hometown school, then-No. 10 Louisville, for 20 points and then came back and dropped 23 on then-No. 6 Duke in a pair of UK signature victories.

Shoni Schimmel, Louisville. Flashy sophomore point guard (14.2 ppg; 4.3 rpg; 4.9 assists) has had even more focus on her this season after U of L lost its leading returning scorer Monique Reid for the season because of injury Dec. 14.

And the Orange Globe goes to ...

A'dia Mathies.

Best director


John Calipari, Kentucky. Has led the UK men to victories over Kansas, North Carolina and Louisville and has the Cats (14-1) ranked No. 2 in the country.

Matthew Mitchell, Kentucky. Even after losing star Victoria Dunlap to graduation, the UK women's coach has guided his team (12-2) to two victories over Top 10 foes and a national ranking as high as No. 6 (currently No. 11) in the country.

Steve Prohm, Murray State. In his first season as a college head coach, the former Alabama student manager has yet to taste defeat (15-0). Prohm has led the Racers to the Great Alaska Shootout title, road wins at then-No. 20 Memphis and UAB and has his team in the Top 25 (No. 19).

And the Orange Globe goes to ...

Steve Prohm.

Best drama


Davis and the Swat Heard Around the World: In arguably the most-anticipated game ever played in Rupp Arena, North Carolina's John Henson appeared to have an open 10-footer to win it. Then, as if launched from a catapult, Kentucky freshman Anthony Davis soared into the picture to snuff the shot and preserve a 73-72 UK win.

Felled by a Christian: The Kentucky men were No. 1 in the country and, nursing a two-point lead in the final seconds at Indiana, were on the verge of surviving one of the wildest road atmospheres in recent memory. Then IU's Christian Watford went all Christian Laettner on the Cats, draining a three-point bomb just ahead of the final buzzer to give the Hoosiers a 73-72 upset.

Siva's Mad Dash: Louisville and Vanderbilt were locked in a 60-60 tie in overtime when U of L guard Peyton Siva launched a furious charge through the entire Vandy defense. Siva didn't stop until he reached the Commodores' bucket for a twisting layup with 1.4 seconds left that allowed the Cards to beat the then-No. 20 team in the country.

And the Orange Globe goes to ...

Davis and the Swat Heard Around the World ... See you at the Orange Globes after party.

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