SEC Media Days links for Friday


SEC Links for Friday:

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Videos: UK players at SEC Media Days

From the SEC, videos of Bud Dupree, Za’Darius Smith and Jordan Swindle during their appearances today at the SEC Media Days 2014.

Click here to see video of Mark Stoops.

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Five advantages to installing artificial turf at Commonwealth Stadium


At the SEC Media Days on Thursday at Hoover, Ala., UK football coach Mark Stoops said he expects that Commonwealth Stadium will switch from natural grass to field turf in time for the 2015 season.

Here are five benefits to Kentucky making the move to an artificial turf playing field:

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SEC football review: LSU last four years

Our SEC football review continues with a hard look at LSU’s game-by-game results over the last four years.

Les Miles’ team went 11-2 in 2010, losing only 24-17 at Auburn and 31-23 at Arkansas. That strong record led into 2011 when the Tigers went through the regular season undefeated, whipped Georgia in the SEC title game, but then were forced to play Alabama in a re-march in the BCS title game. LSU won the regular season meeting 9-6. Alabama won the post-season matchup, and national crown, 21-0.

Miles has been hurt by early defections over the last two years with a number of players opting for the NFL Draft after their junior years. Still, LSU is 20-6 overall and 11-5 in the SEC over the last two seasons.

And Miles would be sure to point out that LSU’s “permanent” East Division opponent is a tough one in Florida. (Or at least it’s tough every year but 2013.) LSU beat the Gators 33-29 in Gainesville in 2010, then 41-11 in Baton Rouge in 2011. Florida beat the Tigers 14-6 at The Swamp in 2012, but LSU won 17-6 last season.

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Kentucky picked last? No surprise there


It was pretty easy to predict that when the SEC Media attending the league’s football Media Days down in Hoover, Alabama got around to making its 2014 season predictions, Kentucky would be picked last in the East.

After all, the Cats have not won a conference game since 2011. They have lost 16 straight SEC games – Joker Phillips’ last eight as UK coach and Mark Stoops’ first eight as UK coach.

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Looking at the Reds’ bats at the break


For my Thursday column, wrote a review of the Reds’ first half with a look-ahead to the second half. Bryan Price’s club picks up play again Friday night when Cincinnati opens a three-game series against the Derek Jeters in Yankees Stadium.

In the column, touched on what the Reds need to get in the second half – actually it’s less than the second half of the season, given the Reds have already played 95 games – especially from Jay Bruce and Homer Bailey.

Here’s a look at how individual Reds hitters were trending at the All-Star break:

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Big Blue Links for Thursday

Big Blue Links for Thursday:

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SEC Media Days Links for Thursday


SEC links for Thursday:

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SEC football review: Kentucky last four years

The next team in our SEC football review happens to be Kentucky, which has gone 15-34 over the last four years, including 4-28 in the SEC.

Joker Phillips took over for the retiring Rich Brooks as the UK coach for the 2010 season. After an 0-3 SEC start, the Cats upset Steve Spurrier and South Carolina, 31-28, but failed to capitalize on the momentum, winning just one more conference game the rest of the way. Kentucky did play in the BBVA Compass Bowl, losing to Pittsburgh.

The Cats again went 2-6 in the SEC in 2011, beating Tennessee for the first time in a quarter-century. The 10-7 win at season’s end was not good enough to get Phillips’ 5-7 club into a bowl game, however. And the roof caved in during 2012. The Cats went 2-10 overall and lost all eight of their league games.

Enter Mark Stoops, who was an identical 2-10 in his first season as the UK head coach. The Cats again lost all eight conference games, bringing their losing streak in league play to 16 games.

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Big Blue Links for Wednesday

Big Blue Links for Wednesday:

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