Sidelines with John Clay

Big Blue Links: Boston U gets second shot at No. 1 Kentucky

Kentucky Wildcats forward Skal Labissiere (1) let out a big yell after a dunk as #2 Kentucky played Wright State on Friday November 20, 2015 in Lexington, Ky.
Kentucky Wildcats forward Skal Labissiere (1) let out a big yell after a dunk as #2 Kentucky played Wright State on Friday November 20, 2015 in Lexington, Ky. Lexington Herald-Leader

Big Blue Links for Tuesday:

Kentucky quarterback Drew Barker is still an unknown, reports Jennifer Smith of the Herald-Leader. "He has thrown just one pass longer than 25 yards. The redshirt freshman quarterback, who earned his first start versus the 49ers last week, has now completed 29 of 48 pass attempts (60.4 percent) for 236 yards, a touchdown and two interceptions."

Bobby Petrino needs a win Saturday, too, writes Mark Story of the Herald-Leader. "One game from the end of the second season of Petrino 2.0, Louisville stands 15-9. That’s not horrible, but is 15-9 really worth all the bad publicity that came from rehiring Petrino?"

Boston gets another crack at No. 1 Kentucky, reports Julian Benbow of the Boston Globe. "There were at least five or six thousand fans in the stands and Boston University guard John Papale was still taking warm-up shots. Tipoff wasn’t for another hour and a half, but when he looked out beyond the basket, the sea of blue already was forming."

Kentucky's guards are adapting quickly to the new rules, reports Jerry Tipton of the Herald-Leader. "Our guards have done a tremendous job adjusting to the new rules of no hands and staying in front,” said assistant coach John Robic, who substituted for John Calipari at Monday’s news conference. “We’re really happy with that part of it.”

The UK-U of L rivalry is bigger than the bowl stakes, writes Tim Sullivan of the Courier-Journal. Since the series restarted in 1993, Louisville has a 13-8 advantage.

More of the same becoming less acceptable at Kentucky, writes Eric Crawford of WDRB. "The point is -- the SEC East isn't very good. And Kentucky failed to take advantage. It had a chance to beat Florida. It had a chance to beat Auburn. It had a chance to beat Vanderbilt. It did not win."

It's time for LSU football and Les Miles to part ways, say Ron Higgins and Jeff Duncan of There are multiple reports that LSU is prepared to buy out Miles' contract.

If LSU fires Miles, what does that mean for Georgia's Mark Richt? asks Mark Bradley of the AJC. "LSU is 7-3 this season, 4-3 in SEC play. Georgia is 8-3, 5-3 in SEC play. LSU’s best win is over Florida, which was without its No. 1 quarterback. Its three losses were by an aggregate 52 points. Georgia’s best win is over Auburn, which is 6-5 and will finish last in the SEC West. Its three losses were by an aggregate 59 points."

South Carolina basketball wins the Paradise Jam, reports The State. "At St. Thomas, U.S.V.I., South Carolina won the Paradise Jam 83-75 over Tulsa and improved to 5-0 for the first time since it last reached the NCAA tournament. Sindarius Thornwell was named Most Valuable Player."

Marquette holds off LSU at the Barclays Center, reports Sheldon Mickles of The Advocate. "LSU forward Ben Simmons, the No. 1 player in the land last winter, and Marquette forward Henry Ellenson, who was ranked fifth overall and was the No. 2 power forward behind Simmons, went at it all night on both ends of the floor."

Return to No. 1 puts UK basketball on historic plateau, reports Jerry Tipton of the H-L. "For those who count such things, Kentucky increased the times it’s been voted No. 1 to 114, according to the AP. Only UCLA (134) and Duke (127) have been No. 1 in more polls. The AP began its college basketball poll in the 1948-49 season."

Matt Jones decides not to run for Congress, reports Sam Youngman of the Herald-Leader. A member of the UK Radio Network team and founder of Kentucky Sports Radio won't challenge Republican incumbent Andy Barr for a U.S. Representative seat.

EKU fires football coach Dean Hood, reports Nathan Hutchinson of the Richmond Register. Eastern took Kentucky to overtime before losing 34-27 earlier this season in Lexington. Hood had been the Colonels' coach for eight seasons.

Alabama players firing shots, reports Mike Niziolek of the Columbus Ledger-Enquirer. "Alabama players met with the media after coach Nick Saban’s weekly press conference and gave the Tigers a few quotes for their bulletin board. It started when center Ryan Kelly was asked what kind of challenge it would be to face defensive end Carl Lawson."

SEC football games Saturday

  • 12:00 - Missouri at Arkansas (CBS)
  • 12:00 - Georgia at Georgia Tech (ESPN2)
  • 12:00 - Louisville at Kentucky (SEC)
  • 12:00 - Clemson at South Carolina (ESPN)
  • 3:30 - Alabama at Auburn (CBS)
  • 4:00 - Vanderbilt at Tennessee (SEC)
  • 7:15 - Ole Miss at Mississippi State (ESPN2)
  • 7:30 - Florida State at Florida (ESPN)
  • 7:30 - Texas A&M at LSU (SEC)