For the first time since 1994, Eastern Kentucky University is hosting a football playoff game. One of the biggest challenges may be getting fans to the stadium. Eastern takes on James Madison Saturday in the Football Championship Subdivision contest. The game kicks off just past noon in Roy Kidd Stadium. Just down the road in Lexington UK will battle Tennessee in a season finale. Colonel coach Dean Hood says Kentucky has been wonderful to Eastern in scheduling games and offering facilities. But Hood admits the Big Blue is Eastern’s biggest enemy when it comes to attendance.
Northern Kentucky University teams hits a snag in joining Division I when the Ohio Valley Conference declined Tuesday to invite NKU to join.
Credit Patrick Reddy / Kentucky Enquirer
A fear that Northern Kentucky University would be too powerful for other Ohio Valley Conference members will keep NKU out of that Division I conference, NKU said Thursday. NKU still says it should receive an invitation by the end of the year and be playing Division I sports by fall of 2012. After a four-year probation, that would make it eligible for the “March Madness” men’s basketball championship and other national tournaments. But the expansion to Division I won’t be in the OVC, leaving the Georgia-based Atlantic Sun and the Illinois-based Summit League as the top possibilities.
At the completion of the early signing period, UK men’s basketball has received national letters of intent from Willie Cauley, Archie Goodwin and Alex Poythress, three of the top players in the Class of 2012, head coach John Calipari announced.
For the second straight season, the University of Kentucky women's basketball team was picked to finish second in the Southeastern Conference in a voting of the 12 league coaches, as announced by the league office Tuesday. The Wildcats finished 25-9 overall last year, 11-5 in SEC play, and advanced to back-to-back NCAA Tournaments for the first time since the 1981-82 and 1982-83 seasons.
UK men’s basketball sophomore Terrence Jones and freshman Anthony Davis were selected to the ESPN Preseason All-America team on Tuesday. Jones, the SEC media’s pick for league preseason Player of the Year, averaged 15.7 points and 8.8 rebounds last season helping guide the Wildcats to the Final Four.
After nearly a decade in Lexington, former University of Kentucky football coach Rich Brooks and his wife have sold their home here, he said. "Karen and I have sold our house here in Kentucky and will really miss our neighbors and the fish pond," Brooks said on Twitter on Thursday afternoon, adding that the house was too big for the two of them. They will move to Oregon where they also own property.
The 28th Breeders’ Cup Championships get underway today at Churchill Downs. The event includes 15 races over two days, featuring some of the world’s top thoroughbred champions. Breeders’ Cup President Craig Fravel says one of this year’s big story lines is the return of Goldikova, the six year old Irish mare seeking a fourth straight Cup victory.
When show jumper Christina Kelly rides in the National Horse Show this week, she might be competing with a home-field advantage. Kelly, 18, lives with her parents in Nicholasville. She has competed several times at the Kentucky Horse Park, including in the Alltech Arena. The high point of her summer was the Bluegrass Festival Horse Show, which was in August.
NCAA Division 3 is out, but apparently a move to NCAA Division 2 remains an option for Georgetown College's sports program. The Georgetown College Board of Trustees met Friday and Saturday, and much of the discussion centered on the school's athletic affiliation. On Friday the trustees requested that President Bill Crouch analyze the data provided by an exploratory committee on a potential move to NCAA D3 before even hearing the committee's recommendation.
Vendors are readying their displays and decorators are setting out the finishing touches at the Kentucky Horse Park's Alltech Arena. This Wednesday, the National Horse Show will open for the first time in Lexington. For decades the event was held at Madison Square Garden in New York City before moving to Wellington, Florida and Syracuse, New York.
UK Athletics Director Mitch Barnhart listened Tuesday as the board of trustees proceeded with a plan to have a trustees' committee, rather than the UK Athletics Association, oversee school sports.
Credit Pablo Alcala / Lexington Herald-Leader
The University of Kentucky Board of Trustees took another step Tuesday toward moving oversight of the athletics department from the UK Athletics Association to a committee of trustees. Without any discussion, trustees accepted a first reading of regulations that would put athletics under the supervision of a new committee of the board made up of five trustees and as many as three outside members.
Jay Gaines has been facing challenges all of his life. Gaines was born with one arm and one leg, but he continues to have big dreams, and he is making them come true as a member of the Taylor County High School football team. Active is the word many people who know Jay would use to describe him. Taylor County High School head football coach Eric Graves said he has been impressed, and amazed, since seeing Jay on the football field.
Part pickup basketball game. Part trade show. Light-hearted fun. An old psychic wound re-opened. That's what Monday's charity game at Rupp Arena — won by the Villains over the Big Blue All-Stars 152-149 in overtime — felt like.
LEXINGTON – The University of Kentucky men’s basketball team was picked by the media to win its 45th Southeastern Conference championship this season as announced by the SEC on Monday. Each SEC school selected media members that cover their team and additional media from across the nation were selected by the conference office to form the voting panel.
Doctors at Jewish Hospital say injured U of L football player Anthony Conner could be released as early as this week. Conner suffered a broken neck during Friday’s win over Rutgers. A senior cornerback from Houston, Conner missed last season with a knee injury; he had worked his way into a starting job this year.
Jason Dunn, 26, right, and his younger brother, Brandon, 21, have been racing go-karts professionally since the early `90s.
Credit Tricia Spaulding / Frankfort State Journal
A couple of Frankfort brothers have been racing go-karts around the south and Midwest since 1993. The Dunns have won numerous races behind the wheel of a go-kart – which has an engine similar to a lawnmower with five horsepower but can reach speeds of more than 100 mph – throughout Kentucky, Tennessee, the Carolinas, Florida, Indiana, Ohio and other states. The brothers have missed Christmas or Thanksgiving almost every year to compete on the track.
For 75 years, the park-like ambiance of the Keeneland race track in Lexington has attracted visitors and horse racing fans from across the globe. The central Kentucky atmosphere also has an effect on horsemen. With the fall meet in full swing, Brenna Angel reports on what keeps trainers and jockeys coming back to Keeneland.
Oversight of athletics at the University of Kentucky would move from the UK Athletics Association to a committee of the UK Board of Trustees under a proposal approved Thursday by a special committee of trustees. That proposal was unanimously approved by the committee, which was created by board Chairman Britt Brockman to study how the university oversees athletics. He formed the committee shortly after former President Lee T. Todd Jr. gave Athletics Director Mitch Barnhart a contract extension and a raise without consulting the Board of Trustees or the UKAA Board.
Georgetown College’s 15-year relationship with the Cincinnati Bengals appears to nearing its end. In an interview with The Cincinnati Enquirer posted on the Bengals’ website Friday night, President Mike Brown said the team is considering keeping the training camp closer to home.
Dan Wheldon, reigning Indianapolis 500 champion, recently took contest winner Trey Taylor, 8, of Clifton, on a $500 IZOD shopping spree at the Florence Mall Macy's. Trey also spent time with Wheldon at the IndyCar series race at Kentucky Speedway.
Meeting an Indianapolis 500 winner would be an unforgettable experience by itself, but Trey Taylor got to do more than shake Dan Wheldon's hand or ask for an autograph. The spunky 8-year-old from Clifton won a Sept. 30 shopping spree with the 2011 Indy 500 winner at the Macy's in Florence Mall, and a couple days later met with Wheldon at Kentucky Speedway before the IZOD IndyCar Series race. Tears welled in Trey's eyes Sunday when his parents somberly broke the news that Wheldon had been in a serious crash at Las Vegas Motor Speedway and did not survive.
Kentucky Coach John Calipari took questions for three quarters of an hour Thursday as part of the annual UK Basketball media day. Calipari was asked about a variety of topics ranging from coaching philosophy, leadership amongst the players, and always having a young team; some of whom may only play one season for the Big Blue.
If the Kentucky Horse Racing Commission approves -- and there appear to be no reasons it wouldn't -- Ellis Park will reopen for simulcasting on Jan. 1 and stay open year-round as Instant Racing machines are installed early in 2012. The Henderson track also will have no overlap with Churchill Downs for its live race meet, which would encompass 30 race dates from July 1 through Labor Day. Churchill did not ask for the July 4 holiday when it made its presentation to the racing commission in Lexington.
Some of Kentucky Coach John Calipari's remarks at the annual UK Tipoff Luncheon in Louisville will likely ruffle a few Cardinal feathers. Coach Cal told the 800 or so attendees at a downtown hotel there's no question where the basketball capital of the state is located.
Creation of a Kentucky High School Basketball Hall of Fame in Elizabethtown took a pivotal step Monday. Elizabethtown City Council entered a memorandum of understanding with the Kentucky Association of Basketball Coaches, outlining the roles and responsibilities of both parties in creating the hall of fame. The city under the agreement will loan the KABC $25,000 that would be matched by the organization as seed money to start the project.
The University of Louisville football team is on the road this weekend at North Carolina. The Tarheels are off to a 4-1 start. U of L is 2-2 after last week’s home loss to Marshall, a defeat that Coach Charlie Strong called “unacceptable.” “We’ll just see where we are,” Strong said this week. “We’ll see if we can bounce back from losing here to going on the road. It’s really going to see what the character of the football team is and just exactly what we’re made of.”
Thousands of race fans are brushing up on their handicapping and flipping through the Daily Racing Form for an October tradition in Lexington: the fall meet at Keeneland. Nine graded stakes races are slated for this weekend, including the Grade 1 Shadwell Turf Mile and the Dixiana Breeder's Futurity.
If boos rain down on him in Rupp Arena later this month, former Duke All-American Christian Laettner will not ask for an umbrella. He's more likely to look upward, stretch out his arms and welcome the drenching. "I miss that," Laettner said Thursday of his role as villain in an upcoming charity game. "I'm 42. I'm getting that less and less. When you retire from the NBA, you don't get the yelling and booing as much."
Rupp Arena is about to host another NBA-caliber exhibition game. Former UK great Jeff Sheppard on Thursday announced details of a Big Blue All-Stars versus the Villains basketball contest for Monday night October 24th. The Villains, a squad of professional players who once competed against UK will be coached by none other than former Duke dagger-thrower Christian Laettner.