Tim Couch’s house for sale for $4.75 million


Former Kentucky quarterback Tim Couch has his Lexington home up for sale. Asking price: $4.75 million. Realtor Whitney Pannell says the home is 12,794 square feet and is on 10 acres.

Click here for more photos.

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Don’t worry, John Calipari still loves Drake

The afternoon’s big internet story when it comes to Kentucky basketball — and isn’t there always a big internet story when it come to UK basketball? — revolved around a report from the Sporting News that UK had to report a secondary violation to the NCAA concerning Drake having his picture taken with some prospective recruits.

This happened at last year’s Big Blue Madness. If you remember, Drake participated in the lay-up line and, if memory served, shot an airball on a 3. That’s what I remember reading. I didn’t watch it. Not a fan of Madness. If you want to go, great. If you want to watch, great. Not my cup of tea.

Anyway, TSN reports that UK told Drake to stay away from the recruits. UK took measures to keep Drake away from the recruits. Didn’t matter. As he was leaving, the rap star shot some pics with players, including Charles Matthews. So UK was forced to send Drake a “cease and desist” letter.

It’s not a big deal except for the fact that it’s Drake and Kentucky has wrapped itself around the wrapper, to the point where John Calipari this afternoon tweeted out that he still loved Drake. Called him a “dear friend.”

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Videos: Commonwealth Stadium tour

We the media were guests for a tour of the work being done at the new Commonwealth Stadium on Wednesday. Mark Cornelison shot a video of the tour and I shot a video of UK senior associate AD Russ Pear talking about the progress of the renovations. Just 44 days to the first game, by the way.

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Report: Bill Simmons to HBO

Bill Simmons is joining HBO, the New York Times is reporting. Simmons’ contract was not renewed by ESPN, which is also shedding Keith Olbermann and Colin Cowherd from the payroll.

In the HBO deal, Simmons will get a talk show, among other things. “It’s no secret that HBO is the single best place for creative people in the entire media landscape,” Simmons said in a statement.

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BBL: UK news plus Bob Stoops, Steve Spurrier, Nick Saban

Big Blue Links for Wednesday:

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Top returning rushers for Kentucky’s opponents

Since we’re on a rushing yardage theme, let’s take a look at what faces Kentucky in the 2015 season. Perusing the schedule and who’s returning, we find that five players who gained more than 1,000 yards rushing in 2014 will face the Kentucky defense this coming season.

Georgia’s Nick Chubb leads the way. After Todd Gurley went down to an ACL tear, Chubb rushed for 1,547 yards in 2014. After that, the next three top returning rushers are all from the non-conference portion of Kentucky’s 2015 slate.

Leading that list is former Cat Dyshawn Mobley, who transferred to Eastern Kentucky and gained 1,491 yards while scoring 20 touchdowns. Mobley was recently named the OVC’s pre-season offensive player of the year. Expect a significant Mobley buildup when EKU visits Commonwealth Stadium on Oct. 3.

Here’s the entire top-10 list:


Related link: Four from EKU named to coaches’ All-OVC team

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BBL: Kentucky football recruiting marches on

Big Blue Links for Tuesday:

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SEC: Gary Pinkel for keeping Notre Dame out

SEC links for Tuesday:

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Opponent 100-yard rushers in Stoops Era

In Mark Stoops‘ two seasons as Kentucky coach, 13 times the opposition has produced a 100-yard rusher. That includes 11 running backs. Florida’s Matt Jones topped the century mark in 2013 and 2014. Mississippi State’s Josh Robinson‘s 198 rushing yards last season is the most against UK in the Stoops Era.

Just three of the 11 are back for the 2015 season. Georgia’s Nick Chubb and Tennessee’s Jalen Hurd are on the Cats’ schedule this season. Alabama’s Kenyon Drake also returns for 2015. He’s coming off a broken leg last season. The Crimson Tide is not on the Cats’ schedule this season.

Chubb gained 170 yards in just 13 carries in Georgia’s 63-31 rout of the Cats at Commonwealth Stadium last season. That’s a ridiculous 13.1 yards per carry. Chubb had runs of 55, 28, 23, 18, 11 and 10 yards. He didn’t carry the ball in the fourth quarter.

A freshman, Hurd gained 118 yards on 24 carries, average of 4.92 yards per carry in Tennessee’s 50-16 win over Kentucky in Knoxville. Hurd had just four double-digit carries on the day — 14, 12, 11 and 10 yards. He was efficient, however.

Here’s the list, staring with Robinson’s 198 yards, of players who have gained 100 yards over Kentucky the last two years.


Related links: UK football results 1950-2014 in Google Docs

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NCAA makes slight change to basketball selection process

The NCAA has announced changes to its principles and procedures for seeding teams in the NCAA Men’s Basketball Tournament. This includes flexibility with the First Four teams, including the last four at-large teams selected to the field.

“It’s a small, yet significant, alteration to the language outlining our seeding process,” said Joseph R. Castiglione, the vice president and director of athletics at the University of Oklahoma and the chair of the Division I Men’s Basketball Committee for the 2015-16 season. “Making this change gives the committee the opportunity to properly seed every team”

Here’s the full release from the NCAA:

INDIANAPOLIS — The NCAA Division I Men’s Basketball Committee will have the flexibility to slide every team up or down the seed list, including the last four at-large teams selected to the field, thanks to an adjustment in the principles and procedures for selecting, seeding and bracketing March Madness teams.

Previously, the guidelines called for the last four teams voted into the tournament field during the selection process to participate in the First Four; now the last four at-large teams on the overall seed list will play in those opening round games.

During the selection process, the committee typically votes for eight schools from a pool of teams under consideration for the tournament. After that vote, the committee ranks those eight teams and the top four vote-getters move to the at-large board, meaning they are in the tournament. During the seeding process, committee members vote for eight schools from a pool of teams already in the field. When those eight teams are determined, committee members rank them and the top four are placed on the overall seed list, which is the committee’s ranking of all 68 teams.

Throughout selection weekend, the committee will compare teams on the seed list with one another, a process known as “scrubbing,” to make sure the group is comfortable with the order in which the teams are ranked. Teams are carefully compared with one another, 1 versus 2, 2 versus 3 and down to 67 versus 68. However, due to the previous principles calling for the last four at-large teams selected to the field participating in the First Four, a full scrubbing process did not take place with those four teams. The new principles change that process.

“It’s a small, yet significant, alteration to the language outlining our seeding process,” said Joseph R. Castiglione, the vice president and director of athletics at the University of Oklahoma and the chair of the Division I Men’s Basketball Committee for the 2015-16 season. “Making this change gives the committee the opportunity to properly seed every team, whereas previous procedures did not permit appropriate scrubbing of the last four at-large teams.

“Selecting teams usually involves looking at teams in groups of eight. Scrubbing is comparing two teams against one another and sometimes there’s greater clarity during that process due to head-to-head competition, record versus common opponents or wins against tournament teams. This tweak provides us with the opportunity to scrub teams even more thoroughly.”

The inaugural First Four took place in 2011, when the field expanded to 68 teams and the men’s basketball committee needed to adjust the championship’s format. Since then, eight teams — the last four at-large teams selected to the field and the last four teams on the overall seed list — have played in the four opening round games on the Tuesday and Wednesday following Selection Sunday. A First Four winner has advanced at least one additional round every year since the First Four’s inception, including VCU making a run to the Final Four in 2011 and La Salle and Tennessee advancing to the Sweet 16 in 2013 and 2014, respectively.

Another change the committee made will provide flexibility for seeding the four teams on the No. 2 line. While teams from the same conference will remain in separate regions, the committee may consider moving the team seeded fifth on the overall seed list out of its natural geographic area to avoid the best of the No. 2 seeds being placed in the same region as the top overall team.

“This change doesn’t mean we are going to a true S-Curve but if we can achieve it, or come closer to having more competitive balance on the top two lines without compromising our existing principles and without putting a team at a great disadvantage, we will consider it,” said Castiglione.

The committee also adjusted language to the principles and procedures to prevent a committee member from being present during discussion or participating in a vote involving a team in which an immediate family member is employed by the school’s athletic department, or is a student-athlete on the men’s basketball team.

Related link: UK will distribute Madness tickets on Oct. 2

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