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Smallthoughts: Rave of the Week…Xavier

USP NCAA BASKETBALL: NCAA TOURNAMENT-WEST REGIONAL S BKC USA CAXavier's Quentin Goodin shoots against Arizona duringXavier's Tyrique Jones dunks against Arizona's Dusan Arizona's Keanu Pinder and teammates react to their 73-71 loss to Xavier. (Getty)

Nothing in sports is more unpredictable than March Madness …if you think I am kidding ask anyone who had their bracket busted by an upset they didn’t see coming … in this tournament Louisville was knocked off , Villanova (the defending champs) and Duke were also eliminated…now add the Arizona Wildcats to that list of elite teams to get knocked out of the tournament. 11th seed Xavier beat Arizona 72-71 to advance to the elite 8, the sound you just heard is someone ripping up their bracket …or the sound you just heard is someone saying see I told you I had Xavier going to the elite 8… yeah ok! Xavier rallied from 8 points down with 4 minutes left to stun Arizona. Xavier got 25 points from Trevon Bluiett and 14 from J.P. Macura, who sliced up Arizona’s defense all game long, creating good looks for himself and his teammates. The Musketeers shot 53% for the game, getting an easy layup with 40 seconds left on a feed from Bluiett to big man Sean O’Mara rolling to the rim. That play completed the comeback for Xavier, which fell behind 69-61. The win puts Xavier in unchartered waters in the elite 8 and they face Gonzaga neither team has ever been to the Final Four so for either team they will be where they have never gone before. But for now Xavier enjoy your moment in the Sun!

Below are game highlights courtesy of Youtube.

Smallthoughts: Trivia Thursday

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How did you do with this week’s question?

If you answered …Eric Dickerson you are correct. Eric Dickerson is the NFL all time single season rushing record holder with 2,105 yards. He accomplished this feat in 1984.

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Smallthoughts: Rant of the Week…Colin Kaepernick

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Why is Colin Kaepernick still a free agent? Why haven’t teams gone out of their way to sign the quarterback? Donald Trump seems to think he is the reason why teams won’t sign Kaepernick.

“It was reported,” Trump said at a rally in Kentucky (while referring to a recent Bleacher Report column), “that NFL owners don’t wanna pick him up because they don’t wanna get a nasty tweet from Donald Trump. Can you believe that?”

Trump said he felt compelled to share that with Kentuckians “because they like it when people actually stand for the American flag, right?”

Then there was this from Film Director Spike Lee:

“How Is It That There Are 32 NFL Teams And Kap Is Still A Free Agent? WTF. Smells MAD Fishy To Me,Stinks To The High Heavens. The New York J-E-T-S Need A Quarterback. Who Is The J-E-T-S Quarterback? Is My Man Joe Willie Namath Coming Back? Crazy Times We Live In. The Question Remains What Owner And GM Is Going To Step Up And Sign Colin So Their Team Has A Better Chance To WIN? What Crime Has Colin Committed? Look At The QB’s Of All 32 Teams. This Is Some Straight Up Shenanigans,Subterfuge, Skullduggery And BS. Ya-Dig? ShoNuff. By Any Means Necessary. And Dat’s Da NoFunLeague Truth,Ruth.”

In all fairness to the Jets they did sign a quarterback, it just wasn’t Kaepernick. Journeyman quarterback Josh Mc Cown is the new quarterback at least for now. We will touch on that another time. But Let’s address Spike Lee’s comments here about the Jets needing a quarterback, while it is true they have been looking for a franchise quarterback since Joe Namath was traded to the Rams back in the mid 70’s Kaepernick is the wrong quarterback at the wrong time for this star crossed franchise. He would have been the right QB for the team last season on a veteran layden team. They were in contract talks with Ryan Fitzpatrick and were basically bidding against themselves and Fitz if you recall wanted Brock Osweiller money(16 million) Kaepernick to the Jets would have been the right move at that time. The reason why the move doesn’t work now is simple …the Jets hit bottom and fell to 5-11 after going 10-6 the season before missing the playoffs by a game, so they felt they were right there. Ok misguided but they had reason to believe. We know what happened which now they are in a rebuild with two young quarterbacks on the roster one they see as a career back up in Bryce Petty and the other they think could be something in Christian Hackenberg. But wait there is more …The Jets own the 6th pick in the draft this season so they could draft another quarterback… or trade down get more picks and get to draft more players. So what does all of this have to do with Colin Kaepernick? Simple …he doesn’t fit the Jets plans this year going forward because their situation is a complete rebuild, he isn’t going to want to be on a team where he could get hammered week after week while the team tries to find itself. Next the Giants …their quarterback hasn’t missed a game in years so he has no shot there … Pittsburgh nope, Dallas, nope, Philly? Nope, Cleveland??seems to be about the only place he could land but that situation in some respects is like the Jets rebuild…a good team he have to hold a clipboard meaning be a back up. In the last 3 years his record is 11-24, injury prone and 29 years old.

One other thing to think about …his style of play while it was entertaining slash and dash had a short shelf life because he isn’t a pocket passer. Michael Vick, Robert Griffin III, and Tim Tebow had styles similar to Kaepernick , both Vick and Griffin  are holding clipboards now and Tim Tebow is trying to make it as a baseball player only Russell Wilson who started out with a run style worked hard enough to become a pocket passer. One other thing Spike Lee seemed to forget … While Kaepernick is opposed to Trump…Woody Johnson the Jets owner is a Trump supporter and is now the U.S. Ambassador to the U.K. can you see the P.R. on that move? Yeah me neither!

Point of all of this is that there is more than what Spike Lee’s comments suggest and that in some respects Kaepernick just has bad timing to be a free agent. Training camp hasn’t begun yet so when the injuries start happening let’s see where the chips fall, someone will eventually sign the free agent QB, but until then …

Smallthoughts: Trivia Thursday

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Welcome back to this week’s trivia Thursday. This week’s question is on Football.

This week’s answer will be posted on Friday along with Smallthoughts: Rant of the Week and Smallthoughts: Rave of the Week.

Smallthoughts:Old School Tuesday…Kevin Grevey

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Grevey played college basketball at the University of Kentucky, where he was a member of legendary coach Adolph Rupp‘s last freshman class and played his three collegiate seasons (freshmen were not eligible to play varsity basketball at the time) under Rupp’s successor, Joe B. Hall. He was named First-Team All-Southeastern Conference in all three of his college seasons and All-American in his junior and senior years. In his senior year Kentucky lost to UCLA in the championship game of the NCAA Tournament in what would be the final game in the career of UCLA’s legendary coach John Wooden; Grevey scored a game-high 34 points and was named to the all-Final Four team.

Upon completion of his collegiate career, Grevey scored 1,801 points, which at the time ranked him second in University of Kentucky history behind only Dan Issel‘s 2,138. His jersey number, 35, is retired by the University of Kentucky

In 1975 Grevey was selected by the Washington Bullets in the first round (18th pick) of the NBA Draft and by the San Diego Sails in the first round (sixth pick) of the 1975 ABA Draft.[2] Grevey signed with the Bullets and played mostly as a backup small forward and shooting guard his first two seasons. When Phil Chenier suffered a season-ending back injury early in the 1977–78 season, Grevey became the starting off guard and averaged 15.5 points per game. The Bullets won their only NBA championship that season, led by Grevey, newly acquired Bob Dandridge and the future Hall-of-Fame duo of Elvin Hayes and Wes Unseld.

Grevey enjoyed four more solid seasons in Washington, averaging no less than 13.3 points per game. An injury sidelined him for half of the 1982–83 season and reduced him to a reserve for the remainder of his career. He played his final two seasons with the Milwaukee Bucks.

In his 10 NBA seasons Grevey played 672 games and scored 7,364 points, for an average of 11.0 points per game.

Smallthoughts: Old School Tuesday spotlights…Kevin Grevey.

Career history
19751983 Washington Bullets
19831985 Milwaukee Bucks
Career highlights and awards
Career NBA statistics
Points 7,364 (11.0 ppg)
Assists 1,247 (1.9 apg)
Rebounds 1,594 (2.4 rpg)

Smallthoughts:Old School Tuesday…Jack Givens

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Givens earned Kentucky Mr. Basketball and Parade All-America honors after his senior year at Lexington’s Bryan Station High School in 1974. UK finished Givens’ freshman season as national runners-up, falling 92-85 to UCLA in the 1975 Final Four championship game. In 1978, Givens and Kentucky returned to the Final Four at the Checkerdome in Saint Louis, Missouri. After leading Kentucky to a semifinal victory over the University of Arkansas, he scored a career-high 41 points and made 18 of 27 field goal attempts against Duke to help Kentucky clinch their fifth NCAA Championship in men’s basketball.Givens lettered four times in varsity basketball from 1974–75 to 1977–78. In that span, he scored 2,038 points in 123 games (16.6 ppg), ranking third on the school’s all-time scoring list. He was named first team all-Southeastern Conference three times from 1976 to 1978 and was a consensus second team All-American in 1978. Kentucky retired Givens’ #21 jersey and a banner in his honor hangs in the rafters of Rupp Arena, Kentucky’s home court.

Givens led the University of Kentucky to the 1978 NCAA Men’s Division I Basketball Championship and was named that year’s Final Four Most Outstanding Player due in most part to his 41-point performance in Kentucky’s 94-88 victory over Duke University in the championship game.

Smallthoughts: Old School Tuesday spotlights…Jack Givens.

Career history
19781980 Atlanta Hawks
Career highlights and awards
Career NBA statistics
Points 1,040 (6.7 ppg)
Rebounds 456 (2.9 rpg)
Assists 142 (0.9 apg)

Smallthoughts:Old School Tuesday …Rick Robey

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With college basketball’s NCAA’s tournament in full swing we are spotlighting 3 former members of the Kentucky Wildcats, Rick Robey, Jack Givens and Kevin Grevey.

Robey starred at the University of Kentucky. At Kentucky Robey was a member of the team that won the 1978 NCAA Championship and the team that was the 1975 NCAA Runner Up. Though Kentucky’s 1978 championship win is most often remembered for Jack Givens’ 41-point outburst, Robey’s performance (20 points, 8 of 11 from the floor, 11 rebounds) was equally critical to the Wildcats’ 94-88 victory.

Robey was the third overall pick in the 1978 NBA Draft, selected by the Indiana Pacers.

Robey then played eight seasons (1978–86) in the National Basketball Association as a member of the Indiana Pacers and Boston Celtics before being traded to the Phoenix Suns before the 1983-84 season in exchange for Dennis Johnson. He scored 3,723 points in his career and was a member of the 1981 Celtics championship team.

Smallthoughts: Old School Tuesday spotlights…Rick Robey.

Career history
1978–1979 Indiana Pacers
19791983 Boston Celtics
19831986 Phoenix Suns
Career highlights and awards
Career statistics
Points 3,723 (7.6 ppg)
Rebounds 2,301 (4.7 rpg)
Assists 611 (1.2 apg)