LEX18.com http://www.lex18.com/ LEX18.com *LEX 18 True Blue Coverage *LEX 18 True Blue Coverage en-us Copyright 2014, LEX18.com. All Rights Reserved. Feed content is not avaialble for commercial use. () () Wed, 30 Jul 2014 13:07:26 GMT Synapse CMS 10 LEX18.com http://www.lex18.com/ 144 25 James Young Returns To The UK Campus http://www.lex18.com/news/james-young-returns-to-the-uk-campus/ http://www.lex18.com/news/james-young-returns-to-the-uk-campus/ *LEX 18 True Blue Coverage Tue, 29 Jul 2014 7:56:12 PM James Young Returns To The UK Campus

Former UK Guard, James Young, returned to Lexington on Tuesday to help his former head coach, John Calipari, with his Pro Camp.

When Young was asked about participating in camp he said he just loves to play basketball, just like the kids. If you think about it, he is a kid. 18 years old and thought to be the youngest player ever selected by the Boston Celtics. "I feel like their sports is just like Kentucky," said Young about the Celtics. "Their fan base is just amazing just like Kentucky's is so I feel like I'll be at the same place like I was just here in Kentucky. I feel like they care, they care about their sports a lot just like they do here."

Both have winning traditions -- the Celtics have the second most wins in NBA history, but the most titles.
Of course the wildcats have the most wins in NCAA history and the second most championships.
The Celtics also have one big rival -- the Los Angeles Lakers -- Julius Randle's new team. "We're like brothers so there will be a lot of competition between us and really just going to have fun with it," said Young. "Just like Kentucky and Louisville. We're not on the same team now so we just have to go out there and play."

Which is Young's message for this year's Kentucky team who a lot of people think can go undefeated. "Don't listen to it at all," warned the former UK Guard. "We kind of listened to it. It kind of got to us and we had an up and down season so really just leave the media stuff alone and stay focused."

As for that concussion that kept Young out of the NBA summer league, he said that a few days ago the doctors cleared him to play.


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Former Cat Alfonso Smith Has A New NFL Team http://www.lex18.com/news/former-cat-alfonso-smith-has-a-new-nfl-team/ http://www.lex18.com/news/former-cat-alfonso-smith-has-a-new-nfl-team/ *LEX 18 True Blue Coverage Tue, 29 Jul 2014 7:42:43 PM Former Cat Alfonso Smith Has A New NFL Team

Former UK running back and Louisville native, Alfonso Smith, has signed a one year deal with the San Francisco 49ers.

The NFC West team needed depth at running back after two were injured. Kendall Hunter tore his ACL and will miss the season while LaMichael James has an elbow injury that will keep him out indefinitely.

Smith spent the past four seasons with one of San Francisco's rivals, the Arizona Cardinals. He had 48 carries for 156 yards and two touchdowns in 43 games. He also had 13 carries on special teams.


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Cordia Responds To Basketball Suspension http://www.lex18.com/news/cordia-responds-to-basketball-suspension/ http://www.lex18.com/news/cordia-responds-to-basketball-suspension/ *LEX 18 True Blue Coverage Tue, 29 Jul 2014 12:44:32 AM Cordia Responds To Basketball Suspension

Cordia was hit with a suspension of play penalty by the Kentucky High School Athletic Association on Monday for the 2014-'15 season.

The last paragraph that was written in the release by the KHSAA: Cordia has thirty (30) days to appeal the ruling to the KHSAA Board of Control. The KHSAA will have no further comment on this matter. All inquiries should be directed to Cordia High School or the Superintendent of the Knott County Schools.

It appears the small school in Eastern Kentucky will be doing just that. On his Facebook page late Monday night, Cordia Head Basketball Coach Rodrick Rhodes, left this comment:

"We have no comment at this time on the KHSAA sanctions. We are handling this matter through our lawyers, due process, and the courts to rebuke this unfair, unjust, and unprecedented ruling. We are going through the proper appeal process and will be going through the courts, because clearly the KHSAA has no interest in being a fair and unbiased authoritative governing body."

Alice Whitaker
Lotts Creek Community School

Sounds like this could be take some time to resolve between the KHSAA and Cordia.

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Cordia Basketball Suspended From Play in 2014-'15 http://www.lex18.com/news/cordia-basketball-suspended-from-play-in-2014-15/ http://www.lex18.com/news/cordia-basketball-suspended-from-play-in-2014-15/ *LEX 18 True Blue Coverage Tue, 29 Jul 2014 12:32:28 AM Cordia Basketball Suspended From Play in 2014-'15

The Kentucky High School Athletic Association has handed down sanctions to Cordia High School following a nearly yearlong investigation for violations of KHSAA bylaws including Bylaw 1 (Responsibility of Eligibility), Bylaw 4 (Enrollment Requirements), Bylaw 6 (Transfer Rule-Citizens of the U.S. or U.S. Territories), Bylaw 7 (Transfer Rule-Foreign Exchange Students), Bylaw 11 (Financial Aid), Bylaw 16 (Recruitment/Undue Influence), Bylaw 23 (Limitation of Season) and Bylaw 25 (Requirements for Coaches).

Among the penalties imposed by the Commissioner are:

Suspension of the Cordia HS boys' basketball team from playing scrimmages or contests during the 2014-15 regular and postseason, as well as the 2016 postseason. During its suspension, the school would be permitted to conduct regular season practices from October 15 until the first allowable day for district tournament play. Included in this penalty is a stipulation that representatives of the boys' basketball team with eligibility remaining may transfer to specific KHSAA member schools without penalty;

Forfeiture of all boys' basketball games from the 2013-14 season for the use of at least one ineligible player in all games. The score will be recorded as 2-0 for all games which Cordia won, and the game score will remain the same for losses but will be noted as forfeits;

Probation for Cordia's interscholastic athletic program through the 2018-19 season. With this probation, Cordia will be placed on conditional membership, with its membership status to be reviewed at the end of the 2014-15 school year to determine whether its membership should continue to be recommended for approval by the Board of Control beginning with the 2015-16 season. Also as part of its probation, all Cordia coaches and athletic administrators shall be required to attend an in-service workshop in Lexington, conducted by the KHSAA staff concerning Association Bylaws and Kentucky law that affects interscholastic athletics during the 2014-15 school year. Additionally, an Assistant Commissioner will also be assigned to work directly with the Superintendent of schools and the Principal of Cordia to ensure development of policies, procedures and best practices to be implemented in the athletic program;

Suspension of two members of the Cordia HS boys' basketball coaching staff from the 2014-15 postseason boys' basketball tournaments sanctioned by KHSAA.

An aggregate fine of $25,980 for various infractions per the fine schedule in Bylaw 27.

"The majority of the aforementioned violations are clearly indicative of a school without any appreciable level of institutional control over its athletic program. While some violations date back to the 2010-2011 school year, the major violations occurred during the past twelve to twenty-four months. The violations in previous years, however, add context and it is my conclusion that they illustrate an undeniable pattern of practice and culture of noncompliance that has been allowed to evolve at Cordia," said KHSAA Commissioner Julian Tackett in his communication to the school. "Unfortunately, after this long and careful review, this series of events may well represent the most wanton and blatant disregard for Association rules in its 97 year history. There is apparently no person within the school or school system willing to actively and aggressively control and manage the athletic program. Therefore, students have been allowed an unrestricted privilege of participation without compliance with applicable and appropriate rules.

"Participation in interscholastic athletics has long been recognized as a privilege and not a right. This is an important distinction. With this privilege comes responsibility. A theme throughout this matter has been the participation, whether at practice or competition, of ineligible student-athletes," added Tackett. "The participation by any ineligible students may have affected the outcome of those games. Moreover, participation by an ineligible student-athlete potentially jeopardizes coverage under the KHSAA's catastrophic insurance policy that is provided for all student-athletes. The collective Association of member schools, including Cordia, have agreed to abide by the Bylaws of the KHSAA which are indisputable when the knowledge is there to prevent an ineligible player from participating."

During the course of its investigation, the KHSAA found sufficient evidence that representatives of the athletic program, including representatives of the Lotts Creek Community School who are inextricably related to both the school and its athletic program, committed violations of KHSAA bylaws, many of which were acknowledged by the school, including:

Falsifying records, or maintaining inaccurate records with regards to living arrangements of transferring student-athletes;

Allowing a staff member to lease housing to the family of a student-athlete without ever receiving payment;

Impermissible contact with multiple student-athletes with the intent to sway them to enroll at Cordia for the purpose of competing in athletics;

Providing free transportation to relocate a student from an out-of-state school;

Providing plane tickets on two separate occasions to a student-athlete so he could travel out-of-state;

Facilitating housing for a student-athlete at no cost to him or his family;

Providing money and clothes to student-athletes;

Conducting tryouts for non-enrolled students;

Paying the entire cost of education for two students on an F-1 exchange VISA to attend Cordia;

Providing housing to numerous students that participated on the boys' basketball team, as well as housing for their families;

Allowing ineligible players to practice and compete in contests before they were cleared to participate;

Requiring players to attend practice prior to the official start date for preseason practice (October 15), and disciplining students who missed these practice sessions;

Holding "open gym" practices that were limited to the boys' basketball team and thus mandatory, following the elimination from the postseason; and

Failing to properly monitor the coaching requirements for individuals coaching in the boys' basketball program, including the obligation to complete the legislatively mandated Sports Safety Course. These violations included a 30-day period during the 2013-14 season when no member of the coaching staff met the requirements of Bylaw 25.

Cordia has thirty (30) days to appeal the ruling to the KHSAA Board of Control. The KHSAA will have no further comment on this matter. All inquiries should be directed to Cordia High School or the Superintendent of the Knott County Schools.


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Wah Wah Jones Passes Away http://www.lex18.com/news/wah-wah-jones-passes-away/ http://www.lex18.com/news/wah-wah-jones-passes-away/ *LEX 18 True Blue Coverage Mon, 28 Jul 2014 1:23:29 PM Wah Wah Jones Passes Away

Wallace "Wah Wah" Jones, one of the most accomplished athletes in the history of the University of Kentucky, passed away Sunday in Lexington at the age of 88.


Jones played basketball, football and baseball at Kentucky in the late 1940s and is the only Wildcat athlete to have his jersey retired in basketball and football. He came to UK from his native Harlan, Ky., where he set a national scoring record in basketball with 2,398 points and led Harlan High School to the state championship. He was all-state in basketball, football and baseball.


At UK, Jones played football from 1945-48 and twice earned All-Southeastern Conference accolades from The Associated Press, first team as a sophomore and third team as a senior. He led the Wildcats in receiving in 1947 and '48, the only two seasons for which receiving statistics are available, with nine catches for 93 yards and two touchdowns as a junior, followed by 19 receptions for 243 yards and five TDs as a senior. He helped UK to its first bowl appearance, a 24-14 victory over Villanova in the 1947 Great Lakes Bowl. He played his last three seasons under Coach Paul "Bear" Bryant.


Jones played basketball from the 1945-46 season through 1948-49, and was a three-time All-American - first-team as a senior, third-team as a junior and second-team as a sophomore. He earned first-team All-SEC honors all four years. He totaled 1,131 points during his career.


Jones helped lead the Wildcats to a 130-10 record over his four seasons and numerous championships under Coach Adolph Rupp:

1948 and 1949 NCAA Champions
1946 NIT Champions
Four SEC regular-season championships
Four SEC Tournament championships
1948 Olympic champions


In 1947-48, he was a member of the "Fabulous Five," along with Ralph Beard, Alex Groza, Cliff Barker and Kenny Rollins, that won the NCAA and Olympic titles.


"The word ‘legend' is used frequently in our society but it is truly fitting when considering Wah Wah Jones," said UK Director of Athletics Mitch Barnhart. "Wah Wah holds a legendary place in the athletic history of our state as a three-sport star at Harlan High School and the University of Kentucky. Wah Wah was a central figure during a golden era of Wildcat athletics, noted for his outstanding performances and his versatility. Our condolences and prayers go out to his family and he will be remembered fondly by the Big Blue Nation."


Following his time as a Wildcat, Jones was selected by Washington with the No. 9 pick in the first round of the 1949 NBA Draft. He was traded to the Indianapolis Olympians and played three seasons for that team.


After his NBA career, Jones returned to Lexington and was elected Sheriff of Fayette County in 1953. He is also known for founding Blue Grass Tours in 1978, which continues today with his son, Wallace, as owner.


Jones is a member of the State of Kentucky Athletics Hall of Fame, the University of Kentucky Athletics Hall of Fame and the Kentucky High School Basketball Hall of Fame.


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Cody, Barrett Start Cape Cod All-Star Game http://www.lex18.com/news/cody-barrett-start-cape-cod-all-star-game/ http://www.lex18.com/news/cody-barrett-start-cape-cod-all-star-game/ *LEX 18 True Blue Coverage Mon, 28 Jul 2014 10:52:12 AM Cody, Barrett Start Cape Cod All-Star Game

LEXINGTON, Ky. -- Kentucky junior stars Kyle Barrett and Kyle Cody earned starting assignments in the 2014 Cape Cod League All-Star Game, with the Western Division posting a 5-0 win over the East, on Sunday night in Bourne, Mass., at Bourne's Doran Park.

Cody opened the game as the starting pitcher for the Eastern Division, getting a groundout from VMI infielder Jordan Tarsovich and a strikeout of Cincinnati star Ian Happ. Cody then got a soft grounder hit to third base but the ball was bobbled and the throw was late to allow Georgia Tech star AJ Murray to reach first on what was scored a single. Cody then induced a fielder's choice from Miami's David Thompson to end the inning. Barrett earned the start for the Western Division in centerfield, hitting seventh, and seeing three trips to the plate.

A 6-foot-7, 240-pound right-hander, Cody is the first UK starting pitcher to earn a start in the CCBL All-Star Game since Taylor Rogers was the starting, and winning pitcher, in the 2011 all-star game at Fenway Park.

Since 2008, nine Kentucky stars have earned Cape Cod League All-Star honors, ranking tied with Vanderbilt for third in college baseball. LSU (15) and Arizona (10) pace college baseball in Cape Cod League All-Star selections since 2008, with Stanford behind UK and Vanderbilt with its seven honorees. This marks the second consecutive season that UK was represented in the CCBL All-Star Game, as Chandler Shepherd fired a shutout, eight-pitch frame in the 2013 game at Yarmouth-Dennis.

Barrett has been a leadoff star for the Harwich Mariners during the summer in the CCBL, hitting .327 (35-for-107) in 30 games, with two doubles, one triple, four RBI and nine steals. A 2013 All-Southeastern Conference Freshman selection in the outfielder for the Wildcats, Barrett has hit .300 (90-for-300) in his 92-game UK career, with 19 doubles, one triple, one homer and 33 RBI, stealing 14 bases. As a freshman, Barrett led the team with a .349 average in 46 games. In 2014, Barrett posted career highs in doubles (six), homers (one), RBI (19), walks (21) and steals (10), hitting .253 in 46 games.

Pitching for the Wareham Gateman during the summer, Cody has made five starts on the mound. He has a 2-2 record and a 2.48 ERA in 25.1 innings, walking just eight, allowing only 22 hits and striking out 25. Over his last three starts, Cody has tossed 21 innings, allowing just three runs with two victories. In his two years at UK, Cody - a 2014 preseason member of the USA Baseball Golden Spikes Award Watch List - has a 7-3 record and a 4.05 ERA in 33 games and 16 starts. In 2014, Cody missed 21 days due to minor injury but still posted a 4-0 record and a 2.84 ERA in 18 games and six starts. Cody tossed 38 innings with five saves as a sophomore, allowing 36 hits and 13 walks. During his freshman season, Cody has a 3-3 record and a 4.84 ERA in 15 games and 10 starts, working 57.2 innings, with 47 strikeouts.

UK Cape Cod League All-Stars (Since 2006)
Kyle Barrett (2014) - Harwich
Kyle Cody (2014) - Wareham
Chandler Shepherd (2013) - Harwich
Trevor Gott (2011) - Orleans
Taylor Rogers (2011) - Harwich
Braden Kapteyn (2010) - Harwich
Chad Wright (2010) - Cotuit
Chris Bisson (2009) - Cotuit
Keenan Wiley (2008) - Y-D
Collin Cowgill (2007) - Y-D
Antone DeJesus (2006) - Harwich


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Duckworth, Brengle Win KY Bank Tennis Championships http://www.lex18.com/news/duckworth-brengle-win-ky-bank-tennis-championships/ http://www.lex18.com/news/duckworth-brengle-win-ky-bank-tennis-championships/ *LEX 18 True Blue Coverage Sun, 27 Jul 2014 11:01:03 PM Duckworth, Brengle Win KY Bank Tennis Championships

Australia's James Duckworth walked onto the court for the Kentucky Bank Tennis Championships men's singles finals Sunday afternoon with a score to settle, and he did exactly that.


The 22-year-old native of Sydney played Great Britain's James Ward, who is ranked 150th in the world and has beaten Duckworth all three times they've been opponents. One of those previous matches was in last year men's singles finals here, which Duckworth lost in three sets 6-4, 3-6, 4-6.


This year Duckworth came out on top - in straight sets, 6-3, 6-4.


"So it was not a good record going into the final, but I felt like I had gotten better with every match this week," said No. 6 seed Duckworth after the match.


"Quigley played a tough match, and from there I got some momentum," he said, referring to his first-round match against former University of Kentucky Wildcat Eric Quigley, which went to three sets 7-6(5), 3-6, 7-5.


From there, Duckworth won in straight sets all the way through the finals.


Against No. 5 seed Ward, Duckworth played a very aggressive game, mixing up the pace of his groundstrokes both forehand and backhand, and working the corners of the court. He had the edge on serving, as well, winning points off 85 percent of his first serves to Ward's 74 percent.


"I think it has been a gradual process of evolving my game," Duckworth said about the difference in his game today from a year ago. "My trainers and I have put a lot of effort toward playing more aggressively, coming forward more, and making things happen under pressure. Playing aggressively is what I felt I did well today."


Duckworth was equally effective in neutralizing Ward's powerful serve, which has been an extraordinary weapon all week. Ward hit eight aces in his first-round match against former Wildcat and All-American Jesse Witten and followed that with 12 aces against Vincent Millot (who retired from play in the second set) and seven aces against Wayne Odesnik.


In the finals, Duckworth won points off 26 percent of Ward's first serves compared with Ward who won points off 15 percent of Duckworth's first serves.


"I have focused a lot on returning; picking up on where the other guy tends to hit the ball and doing a better job of reading it," Duckworth said, who got the edge on aces in the finals, too, hitting eight to Ward's six.

Ward was matter of fact about the loss and seemed to take it in stride.


"I missed too many balls, and it's disappointing; I'll move on and try to play better next week," he said.


But he lamented the change of venue when weather forced both the men's and women's finals inside the Hilary J. Boone Tennis Center. Matches had been outside all week until severe thunderstorms rolled through Central Kentucky Saturday night and stayed most of the day Sunday.


"It is a completely different match, playing indoors," Ward said. "No rallies; nothing else comes the same, and he dealt with it better than I did."



Brengle Takes Title, Gibbs Gets Wild Card


American Madison Brengle was a model of consistency this week at the Kentucky Bank Tennis Championships, including in the finals, where her steadiness and resolve to come back in the second set led her to a 6-3, 6-4 win over fellow American Nicole Gibbs.


"We were closely matched in the first set," said No. 2 seed Brengle, a 24-year-old from Dover, Del., who trains at IMG Academy in Bradenton, Fla., and is ranked 151. "When I got down 4-2 in the second set, though, I knew I had to start off each point aggressively, both my serves and my returns."


The first set, Brengle moved easily, using her athleticism to chase down balls and make very few errors. No. 7 seed Gibbs came to Lexington straight off of two Challenger events, one of which she won last week, defeating Melanie Oudin, a fellow competitor in this tournament whom Brengle took out in the semifinals Saturday.


On Sunday, Gibbs didn't seem as charged as Brengle as she made more errors and looked more leg weary than her opponent. Still, the 21-year-old from California rallied in the second set to get ahead 4-2, but Brengle did not back down, coming back stronger.


"I didn't have a choice," said Brengle. "She was playing too well."


Gibbs, a former standout at Stanford University who is currently ranked 167, was complimentary of Brengle's game but admitted the past few weeks have somewhat wearing.


"I have had a long couple weeks, so I didn't show up with quite the same precision I've shown in some of my other matches," she said. "Madison played really well, fought hard and got the big points. I'm looking for a better match-up next time."


Gibbs said an earlier issue with her hip did not come into play.


" It had nothing to do with the outcome; I got outplayed," she said. "Maybe I was a step slow but that happens at the end of the week, and she had to deal with it as much as I do."


Gibbs, Oudin and Brengle all came into the tournament as contenders for a USTA Pro Circuit wild card into the US Open main draw based on points from the best two results from three specific hard-court Challenger tournaments (Sacramento, Calif.; Carson; Calif.; and Lexington).


Despite Brengle's win this weekend, Gibbs received the wild card. Gibbs had the lead coming here, having been the only contender with a title in one of the series' first two tournaments. Oudin was behind her, having lost to Gibbs in the finals of the Carson, Calif., Challenger, and Brengle was third with her previous best finish being in the semifinals of the Sacramento Challenger. When Brengle defeated Oudin in the semifinals, she took Oudin out of the running, assuring Gibbs the wild card.


"It is in the back of your mind throughout these tournaments," Gibbs said. "You come out taking it one match at a time. After I lost second round at Sacramento, I thought I had virtually no chance at the wild card. So I came out swinging last week at Carson, and then I'm in the lead coming into this week. I just wanted to come through with a solid performance and give myself the best chance of achieving that opportunity."


Brengle had said Saturday that she was fine with not getting the wild card.


"Whether I go there and play in qualifying or go there in the main draw, New York is still New York," she said.




Three Former Wildcats Inducted Into the University of Kentucky Wildcat Tennis Hall of Fame



Three former Wildcats were inducted Sunday into the University of Kentucky Wildcat Tennis Hall of Fame: Billy Evans, Tom Jomby and Les Chapman.


· Evans was one of the original two-sports standouts at the University of Kentucky and was one of the most highly recruited players ever to commit to the Wildcats, where he played No. 1 singles for all three seasons he played (1952, '54, '55). Evans was even more successful as a basketball player for the Wildcats. He was the fourth-leading scorer for the undefeated (25-0) 1953-'54 basketball team. His 1954-'55 team was ranked No. 2 in the country, while the 1953-54 team finished the season No. 1 overall in the country. In 1956, Evans helped the United States to Olympic gold in Australia in the sport of basketball.

· Recent graduate Tom Jomby was named an All-American in both his 2013 and 2014 season for singles, as well as accumulating the honor in 2013 for his doubles play with Kevin Lai. Jomby was a key part of UK's 2012 Southeastern Conference championship, 2011 elite eight appearance and its two SEC tournament finals in 2011 and 2012.

· Les Chapman is unique to Kentucky on two fronts. First, Chapman is Kentucky's first - and only - two-time SEC individual champion. Chapman won the SEC No. 3 doubles as a sophomore in 1970 with Steve Imhoff. He followed that up as a junior in 1971 by repeating with Randy Edmiston. With the SEC moving to a team format for the championships, it is a record that will stand for a long time at UK. Recruited by coach Richard Vimont, Chapman is also unique in UK history as one of the first scholarship foreign athletes recruited to the school.



UK Tennis Center Garden Named in Honor of Stephen Mather


The new Stephen Mather Tennis Garden will greet visitors to the Hilary J. Boone Tennis Complex. The garden was named in Mather's honor on Sunday.

A standout on the 1992 Wildcat SEC Championship team, Mather was a four-year starter for the Wildcats and as a junior player won seven Creason championships and a Southern closed tournament.

As a high school player at Trinity, he reached four state singles finals, winning in 1986 and leading his team to the state championships.

As an adult, Mather won seven Kentucky state closed championships and was inducted into the KTA Tennis Hall of Fame in 1997.

Mather passed away December 9, 2005 , leaving one of the greatest legacies in Kentucky tennis history.


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UK Legend Passes Away http://www.lex18.com/news/uk-legend-passes-away/ http://www.lex18.com/news/uk-legend-passes-away/ *LEX 18 True Blue Coverage Sun, 27 Jul 2014 5:27:00 PM UK Legend Passes Away

Arguably the greatest UK athlete passed away on Sunday.

Wallace "Wah Wah" Jones died July 27 -- nearly two weeks after his 88th birthday.

The Harlan, KY native was an All-American at UK (1945-1949) as a basketball and football player. He's the only player to have his number retired in both sports.

Not only did he lead UK to two NCAA Championships (1948 and 1949), but Jones also won a gold medal in the 1948 Summer Olympics.

Jones was drafted 8th overall in the 1949 NBA Draft by the Washington Capitols.


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AJ Reed Gets Promoted http://www.lex18.com/news/aj-reed-gets-promoted/ http://www.lex18.com/news/aj-reed-gets-promoted/ *LEX 18 True Blue Coverage Sun, 27 Jul 2014 4:32:09 PM AJ Reed Gets Promoted

AJ Reed is on his way to Class-A ball with the Quad Cities River Bandits.

The former Kentucky Wildcat played 34 games with the Houston Astros' short season A-ball team, Tri-Cities. Reed batted .306 with five home runs (including a grand slam) and 30 runs batted in.

The Astros' second-round pick in the 2014 MLB Draft is expected to make his debut in Bowling Green, KY on Monday versus the Hot Rods at 1:05 EST.



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Coach Stoops In Louisville For Kickoff Luncheon http://www.lex18.com/news/coach-stoops-in-louisville-for-kickoff-luncheon/ http://www.lex18.com/news/coach-stoops-in-louisville-for-kickoff-luncheon/ *LEX 18 True Blue Coverage Fri, 25 Jul 2014 6:10:28 PM Keith Farmer Coach Stoops In Louisville For Kickoff Luncheon

UK Head Football Coach, Mark Stoops and some of his coaching staff were in downtown Louisville for the annual kickoff luncheon on Friday

A packed house showed up at the Galt House to hear what the coach had to say about this year's team and the upcoming season.

Before he spoke to the crowd, Coach Stoops took some time with the media where he was asked about the rivalry between the Cats and the Cardinals. Even though he says it's above his pay grade, Coach Stoops would want to see the series continue even if the southeastern conference goes to a nine game schedule some day. "I think it's very important. Any time you're in an in-state rivalry, it's very important. I think both groups, both institutions, have such strong fans and that fan base," said Coach Stoops. "It's important to them, it's important to our players, it's important to us. There's no denying that. Charlie and I have had discussions--I don't know Coach as well--sometimes people don't realize there's 11 other games that we've got to get to. But, it is important and we embrace that challenge."

The UK players report to campus on August 3rd for training camp and the workouts begin the next day. For the first time, the NCAA allowed coaches to work with players during the summer in the weight and film rooms. But, they're excited to see how the players look now on the field. Coach Stoops wants to see improvement, even if that's not talking about wins and losses. "We'll measure success by how we go about doing our business to win. I feel very good about the team. The way we've grown. Not only on the field but off the field as far as leadership and taking care of business. Growing up as young men. Being more responsible, more accountable and dependable toward each other toward the program. Obviously, we're not doing this to not win games. We're still a work in progress but I like where we're headed."

The season opener for the Wildcats is August 30th in Commonwealth Stadium against UT-Martin.


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Quigley And Metka Move To The Doubles Semifinals http://www.lex18.com/news/quigley-and-metka-move-to-the-doubles-semifinals/ http://www.lex18.com/news/quigley-and-metka-move-to-the-doubles-semifinals/ *LEX 18 True Blue Coverage Thu, 24 Jul 2014 10:48:11 PM Quigley And Metka Move To The Doubles Semifinals

Eric Quigley and Kevin Metka defeated New Zealanders Artem Sitak and Marcus Daniell 6-4, 6-4 in front of a hometown crowd Thursday night.

The win moves Quigley and Metka into the doubles semi-finals and gives the tennis fans in Lexington another opportunity to cheer on one of their favorites. Quigley certainly appreciates the support, and his doubles partner Kevin Metka loves it, too.

"It is good to ride the energy of the crowd," Metka said.

Quigley said the keys to the victory Thursday were strong serves from both he and Metka and making great returns at key moments.

Quigley, a University of Kentucky standout, and Metka, one of Ohio State's top players, have never played doubles together, and have never faced each other across the net. In fact, the USTA paired them up together a few days ago for a wild card spot in this tournament. So for this tournament, for this week, a Kentucky Wildcat and an Ohio State Buckeye are on the same team, and hoping to give the hometown fans a doubles victory to remember.


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Time Warner Cable, Bright House Networks To Carry SEC Network http://www.lex18.com/news/time-warner-cable-bright-house-networks-to-carry-sec-network/ http://www.lex18.com/news/time-warner-cable-bright-house-networks-to-carry-sec-network/ *LEX 18 True Blue Coverage Thu, 24 Jul 2014 9:02:03 PM Time Warner Cable, Bright House Networks To Carry SEC Network

ESPN, Time Warner Cable and Bright House Networks have reached an agreement for carriage of the SEC Network when the channel launches on August 14, 2014. The network will be available to fans and followers of the Southeastern Conference in all Time Warner Cable and Bright House Networks markets ahead of the first SEC 2014-15 college football season game, Texas A&M vs. South Carolina, on August 28 at 6 p.m. ET. With the addition of Time Warner Cable and Bright House Networks, the SEC Network will be available to approximately 60 million households nationwide.

"We know we have customers who want the SEC-ESPN Network, and are pleased to bring it to them," said Andrew Rosenberg, Senior Vice President of Content Acquisition for Time Warner Cable. "This deal will help ensure that fans and alumni of SEC universities won't miss any important games."

Added Sean Breen, Disney and ESPN Media Networks senior vice president, affiliate sales, "By delivering the SEC Network across Time Warner Cable and Bright House Networks' nationwide footprint, including key markets within SEC territory, we are meeting the demands of fans while also adding value to customers' video subscriptions in advance of the network's launch next month."

The SEC Network will air more than 1,000 live events in its first year, including at least 45 exclusive SEC football games, more than 100 men's basketball games, 60 women's basketball games, 75 baseball games, 50 softball games and events across all of the SEC's 21 sports. The network will be an all-access pass to nationally competitive events, news and information, expert analysis, classic games and in-depth features on the most storied conference in college athletics.

"It is great to have Time Warner Cable as a distribution partner for the SEC Network," said Mike Slive, Commissioner of the Southeastern Conference. "Time Warner Cable customers, particularly those in South Carolina and Texas, will have the opportunity to enjoy our football season opener exclusively on the SEC Network when Texas A&M visits South Carolina on August 28."

"Time Warner Cable and Bright House Networks customers reside in some of the most intense fan areas of the Southeastern Conference," added Justin Connolly, ESPN senior vice president, college networks. "We look forward to providing an array of outstanding SEC programming to Time Warner Cable customers across the country when the SEC Network debuts on August 14."

Time Warner Cable TV customers can find the SEC Network on their channel lineup upon its launch by visiting www.twc.com; Bright House Networks customers can go to www.brighthouse.com.


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Fundraiser To Honor Trent DiGiuro 20 Years After His Death http://www.lex18.com/news/fundraiser-to-honor-trent-digiuro-20-years-after-his-death/ http://www.lex18.com/news/fundraiser-to-honor-trent-digiuro-20-years-after-his-death/ *LEX 18 True Blue Coverage Thu, 24 Jul 2014 5:21:47 PM Fundraiser To Honor Trent DiGiuro 20 Years After His Death

It has been 20 years since UK Football Player Trent DiGiuro was gunned down celebrating his 21st birthday here in Lexington. Despite all the ups and downs involving Shane Ragland, the man police say killed Trent, his family remains positive and they have found away to honor Trent years after his death.

Trent's father, Mike, is preparing for a fundraiser this Saturday July 26, for the Trent DiGiuro Foundation. It awards three Oldham County Seniors, who are student-athletes like Trent, a $2500 scholarship for college. This year's event will be a polo fundraiser at Hardscuffle Farm in Prospect this Saturday from three to seven. Since the foundation started 18 years ago, the DiGiuro's have given scholarships to nearly 70 well-deserving students. Trent's good friends from high school are the driving force behind it.

"They have just developed this. They have never forgotten him. They stayed close to us all these years. They helped us get through the whole thing," says Mike DiGiuro

If you would like to attend to the Trent DiGiuro fundraiser, it begins at 3 p.m. and runs until 7 p.m. this Saturday at Hardscuffle Farm in Prospect.  Follow I-65 to the Gene Synder Freeway, take a right on highway 42 and look for signs to Hardscuffle Farm, located at 2300 North Rose Island Rd.

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Football Fan Day Set For Aug. 9 http://www.lex18.com/news/football-fan-day-set-for-aug-9/ http://www.lex18.com/news/football-fan-day-set-for-aug-9/ *LEX 18 True Blue Coverage Thu, 24 Jul 2014 2:48:43 PM Football Fan Day Set For Aug. 9

LEXINGTON, Ky. - Kentucky Football Fan Day has been set for Saturday, Aug. 9 at Nutter Fieldhouse at 9 a.m. ET, with a practice open to the fans following at 10:45 a.m. at Commonwealth Stadium. Admission and parking is free of charge.

Kentucky's student-athletes and coaches will sign autographs at the annual event at 9 a.m. and fans will also be able to pick up new 2014 posters and schedule cards. The 2014 Wildcats will be available for autographs in the Nutter Fieldhouse and the autograph session will conclude at 10:15 a.m., with the squad hitting the field at 10:45 a.m. for an open practice at Commonwealth Stadium, which is slated to conclude at Noon.

Parking and admission are free, with parking available in the red, green and blue lots immediately adjacent to the stadium.

The event will conclude the opening week of fall camp for the 2014 Kentucky Wildcats, who are scheduled to arrive for camp on Aug. 4, with UK's annual media day set for Aug. 8. Kentucky's season lidlifter will be on Aug. 30 vs. UT Martin, with kickoff set for Noon at Commonwealth Stadium.

The season opener will be televised by the SEC Network, to check to see if your television provider has the SEC Network, visit GetSECNetwork.com.

Fans can purchase season tickets, and single-game tickets for home and away games, by visiting UKfootballtix.com.

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Ward Tops Witten In Three Sets http://www.lex18.com/news/ward-tops-witten-in-three-sets/ http://www.lex18.com/news/ward-tops-witten-in-three-sets/ *LEX 18 True Blue Coverage Wed, 23 Jul 2014 11:48:33 PM Ward Tops Witten In Three Sets

LEXINGTON, Ky. - After taking former Kentucky Wildcat Jesse Witten to a third set and winning his second round, 6-4, 7-6(5), 6-2, Britain's James Ward still was not happy.

And neither was Witten.

Witten didn't like the officiating, and Ward, last year's winner, didn't care for the crowd, or the officiating.

The difference was, it seemed to penetrate Witten's skin a little deeper than Ward, who despite his distaste for the vocal crowd, kept his cool, picked up his serve and waited for his opponent to make the mistakes.

"When it is like that -- in your face on every point -- and people don't know what they are talking about, it can get very frustrating," said the 27-year-old Ward, referring to the reactions to the calls by some of the fans in the stands.

Despite the upheaval of the third set, the first two sets were filled with plenty of momentum shifts. Ward gave Witten far fewer looks at the ball than his previous opponent in the first round, Italy's Erik Crepaldi. He also anticipated Witten, neutralizing his trademark strength and accuracy. Witten couldn't get his serve under wraps, but neither could Ward until the last set. Both men had first-serve percentages ranging around the 50 percent mark, with Ward's a few percentage points higher.

Ward described his play in the beginning as "pretty shambolic." A trip to the dictionary found that he felt his game in the beginning was disorganized and chaotic. Witten might have said the same thing about his own third set or he might have said he ran out of gas.

"It's a lack of playing and a lack of conditioning," said the Bradenton, Fl., resident, who has been teaching tennis. "I can't get out there and expect to play perfect, but it was great to be able to compete with a guy who is 150 in the world."

Ward said Witten was able to find extra energy because of the crowd, but said he felt like he played the better game.


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Dean Wells Still Loves It When Kentucky Beats Louisville http://www.lex18.com/news/dean-wells-still-loves-it-when-kentucky-beats-louisville/ http://www.lex18.com/news/dean-wells-still-loves-it-when-kentucky-beats-louisville/ *LEX 18 True Blue Coverage Wed, 23 Jul 2014 5:00:16 PM Alan Cutler Dean Wells Still Loves It When Kentucky Beats Louisville

When Dean Wells came to Kentucky, he wasn't sure he was good enough to play at UK. After a great career at UK, he went on to have a terrific career in the NFL. Wells exceeded his expectations.

Three UK football greats, Wilbur Hackett, Warren Bryant and Dean Wells, were honored during Governor's Cup activities Tuesday night at the Derby Museum and Wednesday at the Hurstbourne Country Club in Louisville.

Wells hasn't changed. He still loves it when Kentucky beats Louisville.

"Oh absolutely," says Wells. "I am a die-hard, passionate UK football and basketball fan now. So I savor the tail-gating, and I love the banter between fans and I'm not a fan of that other color."

Wells is from Louisville but grew up a huge UK fan. He also became the captain and an Academic All-American.  He started 77 of his 129 games in his 9-year NFL career. 

When it comes to memories at Kentucky, this is number one: Georgia has owned UK for what seems like forever so Doug Pelphrey's field goal to win the game 26-24 is a great memory, but also a painful one.

"It was fun, but then it wasn't fun because I was at the bottom of the pile. I'm a little claustrophobic. All of a sudden you see the highlight film and I'm trying to throw guys off of me," Wells said. 

Wells is modest and feels uncomfortable when you say he was a star. But he is quick to add he tried hard.

Wells was a star who always tried to do everything the right way.


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Hackett, Bryant, Wells Honored At Governor's Cup Events http://www.lex18.com/news/hackett-bryant-wells-honored-at-governor-s-cup-events/ http://www.lex18.com/news/hackett-bryant-wells-honored-at-governor-s-cup-events/ *LEX 18 True Blue Coverage Wed, 23 Jul 2014 4:59:10 PM Hackett, Bryant, Wells Honored At Governor's Cup Events

LEXINGTON, Ky. - Three University of Kentucky football greats, Wilbur Hackett, Warren Bryant and Dean Wells, were honored during Governor's Cup activities Tuesday night at the Derby Museum and Wednesday at the Hurstbourne Country Club in Louisville.

Hackett was a three-year starting linebacker at Kentucky, earning Sophomore All-Southeastern Conference honors in 1968, honorable mention All-SEC as a junior and was Kentucky's Co-Most Valuable Player as a senior. One of the pioneers of integration in the SEC, in 1969 he became the first African-American team captain in any sport in SEC history. Hackett stayed close to athletics by becoming a baseball umpire and football game official, retiring recently after 15 seasons as an SEC football official. His officiating highlights included three SEC Championship Games, two Rose Bowls and a Fiesta Bowl. He is a member of the University of Kentucky Athletics Hall of Fame and the Kentucky Athletic Hall of Fame and was UK's 2013 SEC Legend.

Bryant, who lettered from 1974-76 as an offensive tackle for UK, was a first-team All-American by the Walter Camp and American Football Coaches Association in 1976. The star offensive lineman, whose jersey is retired at UK, was also winner of the Jacobs Trophy in 1976, which honors the SEC's most outstanding blocker. Bryant was a three-time All-SEC selection and was named to the Lakeland (Fla.) Ledger 25-year (1961-1985) All-SEC team. A first-round draft choice by the Atlanta Falcons in 1976, Bryant played in 104 career games in the NFL with the Falcons and the Los Angeles Raiders until his NFL career ended in 1984.

Wells was a four-year letterwinner at Kentucky from 1989-1992 playing outside linebacker, end and tackle. The native of Louisville, Ky., played in 43 career games for UK with 28 starts, totaling 206 tackles, 17 sacks and nine tackles for loss. Wells, who earned his undergraduate degree in the spring of 1992 and played the fall of 1992 as a graduate student, was only the second player in UK history to be named to the Academic All-SEC Honor Roll four seasons and was a member of the College Football Association Scholar-Athlete Team in 1992. His senior season, Wells posted five sacks in UK's victory over Indiana, which still stands as the most quarterbacks sacks in a game in program history. Wells had 10 sacks overall in 1992, which ranks third most in a single season in program history. Wells was drafted by the Seattle Seahawks in the fourth round of the 1993 NFL Draft and played in 129 career games with the Seahawks and Carolina Panthers, making 77 starts, in his nine-year pro career.

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Wildcats Honored For Academics By NABC http://www.lex18.com/news/wildcats-honored-for-academics-by-nabc/ http://www.lex18.com/news/wildcats-honored-for-academics-by-nabc/ *LEX 18 True Blue Coverage Wed, 23 Jul 2014 1:18:12 PM Wildcats Honored For Academics By NABC

Kansas City, Mo. - For the second-consecutive season the Kentucky men's basketball program was honored by the National Association of Basketball Coaches for team academic excellence. 

The second annual Team Academic Excellence Awards, created by the NABC Committee on Academics to recogne outstanding academic achievement, selected 125 colleges and universities with cumulative team grade-point average of 3.0 or better for the 2013-14 season.

John Calipari's squad posted a 3.11 cumulative GPA. Calipari's squad has tallied a 3.0 GPA or better in six of the last seven semesters.

Three Wildcats, Tod Lanter, Sam Malone and Jarrod Polson, were named to the NABC Honors Court on Monday. Malone was the recipient of the Elite 89 award at the 2014 Final Four, which honors the student athlete with the highest cumulative GPA participating in the Final Four.

Nine Wildcats were tabbed to various Southeastern Conference Honor Rolls this season. Dominique Hawkins, Dakari Johnson, Lanter, Marcus Lee, Brian Long, Malone, Polson, Alex Poythress and Derek Willis were all honored by the SEC.

Since Calipari's arrival, all nine players who have exhausted their athletic eligibility have graduated from UK including: Twany Beckham, Josh Harrellson, Ramon Harris, Jon Hood, Mark Krebs, Darius Miller, Polson, Perry Stevenson and Eloy Vargas. Furthermore, Patrick Patterson and Polson completed their degrees in just three years.

Kentucky was one of three teams from the SEC to earn recognition by the NABC for academic excellence, while a mere eight BCS-level institutions earned the honor.


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Alumni Game Tickets On Sale July 28 http://www.lex18.com/news/alumni-game-tickets-on-sale-july-28/ http://www.lex18.com/news/alumni-game-tickets-on-sale-july-28/ *LEX 18 True Blue Coverage Wed, 23 Jul 2014 10:16:13 AM Alumni Game Tickets On Sale July 28

LEXINGTON, Ky. - Tickets for the 2014 UK Men's Basketball Alumni Charity Game, which will be held August 24 at 6 p.m. ET in Rupp Arena, will go on sale to the public on Monday, July 28, at 10 a.m. ET. For the first time in three years, a team of UK pros will face a team of non-UK pros. 

All seats are reserved and priced at $101 (premium lower level), $31 (lower level), and $16 for premium upper level. Tickets can be purchased at the Rupp Arena box office, online at Ticketmaster.com, at any Ticketmaster Outlet or by phone at 1-800-745-3000. There is an eight-ticket limit per person. All orders will have additional fees attached. All proceeds from the game will go to charity.

You must be 16 or older to purchase tickets and children under the age of 2 get in for free with a paying adult.

Doors to Rupp Arena will open at 4 p.m. ET.

Set to tip off Sunday evening at 6 p.m. ET, the game will feature Wildcats currently or formerly playing professionally against non-UK players also either currently or formerly playing professionally. The Big Blue Nation will have an opportunity to enjoy some of the top talent to don the Blue and White against other elite talent. Per NBA rules, the University of Kentucky cannot confirm individual players participating in the exhibition game.


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Construction At Kentucky Football Stadium To Go On http://www.lex18.com/news/construction-at-kentucky-football-stadium-to-go-on/ http://www.lex18.com/news/construction-at-kentucky-football-stadium-to-go-on/ *LEX 18 True Blue Coverage Wed, 23 Jul 2014 9:10:20 AM Construction At Kentucky Football Stadium To Go On

(AP) - The $110 million construction project at the University of Kentucky's Commonwealth Stadium will continue through the upcoming football season with the goal of finishing renovations before the 2015 kickoff.

UK Athletics project manager Russ Pear says construction crews will work until Thursday on game weeks before cleaning up the construction area and setting up temporary fencing by Saturday morning.

Kentucky spokesman Tony Neely told the Lexington Herald-Leader that seating capacity will be down about 6,000 in 2014 compared with 2013 because of construction in the south upper deck.

The work will require some changes to the way fans enter Commonwealth Stadium on game days.

"Our event management team is working to clear up other logistical problems (before the season begins)," he said.

The Wildcats will kick off their 2014 season at home against Tennessee-Martin on Aug. 30.

Pear said good weather during late summer and fall would allow construction to continue through the season.

"Sequencing is important," Pear said. "Obviously, what we're trying to do is get a lot of good weather. The final home game for us this season will be Nov. 8, and we think we can manage about one more month of decent weather after the season ends. At that point, we're hoping what we're working on at that time will be closed (by a roof or glass)."

About 17 rows have been removed from the south upper deck, Neely said, in favor of a new structure that will rise above the upper deck and hold luxury suites, along with a new press box.

About 2,000 season ticket holders held seats in the removed area. Those holders were allowed to choose where they wanted to move. Commonwealth Stadium has a large enough allotment at the price range of the former seats that holders would not get priced out of tickets.

The student section will remain in the same location this season, Neely said. Plans for shifting students to the east end zone will be implemented in 2015, which coincides with Kentucky's goals of completion.

"What we're really targeting is 409 days (the Friday before the 2015 season begins)," Pear said. "Everything we accomplish along that way is progressing to that goal."


Information from: Lexington Herald-Leader, http://www.kentucky.com

(Copyright 2014 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.)


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