[Moderated by Matt Jones]
What a month. Today is the last day of April, and for having only thirty days, it felt like the longest month of my life. I think I finally learned to “savor the ride,” as everyone advised us to the entire season. Not a day has gone by where I haven’t worn a UK championship t-shirt, or watched a video of Woodland and Euclid after the final buzzer and teared up for a moment.or stared lovingly at my front page of the Herald-Leader from Tuesday, April 3rd. I feel absolutely no qualms about saying that even VH1 would agree that this was the BEST MONTH EVER.
Before we move on from 8pril and into the season already known as Dy9asty, let’s take a quick look back at what April showers brought us (hint: much more than May flowers).
First and foremost, the men’s basketball team brought the glory back to the Commonwealth with the long-anticipated eighth national championship title. Combining talent unmatched by any other team in the nation and a brotherhood that was apparent to anyone with eyes, the Cats achieved a 38-2 record and John Calipari’s first national title. Ever since he was hired three years ago, Calipari has put his heart and soul into reinvigorating the program after the Dark Days of BCG, and his coronation was completed on a Monday night in New Orleans. The fans reveled in the streets, letting loose fourteen years worth of pent-up celebration efforts, and the best part is that everyone involved truly believes we can continue this high for at least the next season, if not longer.
But since Kentucky fans constantly have “On to the Next One” playing in their mental soundtrack, it was barely a week before we turned our attention to next year’s Wildcats. Shabazz Muhammad and Nerlens Noel, the two most highly coveted recruits from next year’s class, announced their decisions in an ESPN Signing Day special. Muhammad went first and declared his official move to the City of Angels, sending UK fans into a brief panic. Nerlens, however, saved the day and revealed his decision in the most dramatic way possible:
That picture will never get old.
With our recruiting class solidly anchored, the time was finally right for UK’s starting five underclassmen to officially declare for the NBA draft. On April 18th, Calipari sat surrounded by Terrence Jones, Doron Lamb, Marquis Teague, Michael Kidd-Gilchrist, and Anthony Davis, who surprised absolutely no one by officially committing to the 2012 NBA drafts. BBN collectively wished them well, and the boys have reciprocated our appreciation by taking Kentucky by a storm, traveling constantly to all ends of the state to give fans autographs, pictures, and legitimate prom poses with these future NBA stars. The National Championship trophy also went our tour with Coach Cal, Matt Jones, and a fancy bus. The most important thing we learned from this road trip, aside from the fact the Calipari and his players are completely dedicated to the programs’ fans, is that Shoney’s in Elizabethtown was recently remodeled.
I’m really hoping UK Athletics uses pictures like this in a new, Travelocity Gnome-style marketing campaign. Just a suggestion.
Post-season recruiting is in full session right now, and it’s looking like that will have to keep us occupied until the NBA draft on June 28th. The Cats have their eye on Anthony Bennett, whose enigmatic approach to his recruitment has everyone speculating. He’s not set to make a decision for another month or so, so there’s a lot of sitting, waiting, and wishing to be done in Big Blue Nation this May.
Finally, and honestly one of the month’s events that I have found the most genuinely thrilling, our editor in chief Ally Tucker has gotten The Call up to the main KSR site. She absolutely deserves her new position of weekend editor, and it seems like forever ago when the two of us were embarking on our original blogging adventures at Tuckers Tales (check it out for some giggles… and remember, it’s TuckersTales.net, not TuckersTales.com. Two VERY different sites). Ally has put in an incredible effort when it comes to promoting KSR College and keeping it functioning on a daily basis, and I can’t wait to see how she’ll help take KSR to the next level. This is how excited I am, and you should be too:
And on that note, goodbye, 8pril. It was unbelievable while it lasted. But now…
@KristenGeilKSR for the non-basketball news we face in the imminent future, including Derby, Olympics, and Monday Night Karaoke. Also, Ally, I really wanted to insert one of those pictures of you dressed up as Michael Jackson for his tribute skate at Champs, but I refrained. Figured it wasn’t professional. However, if anyone reading this wants to see it, get at me.
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