Is Patrick Patterson the Greatest Role Player in NCAA history?

Patrick Patterson and role player would have never gone in the same sentence prior to this season, but during tonight’s sloppy win, I had an epiphany. Patrick Patterson is a role player on this basketball team, and he might just be the greatest role player in the history of college basketball.

His freshman season he averaged 16.4 and 7.7 per game. His sophomore season he did 17.9 and 9.3 per game. So far this year, Pat is doing 15.1 and 7.5 per game, but during SEC play, he is only averaging 11.8 and 5.7 per contest. In 2010, Patterson has yet to post a double-double, or even grab double digit rebounds in a game. It may sound petty, but during his first two seasons, we grew accustomed to him going out and putting up a double-double.

What exactly is a role player? Some people think of a role player as someone who isn’t very talented but gives it all they have day in and day out. But according to this fabulous article written by a contributor at BleacherReport.com, there are 5 qualities a role player must have.

1. Must fill up the depth chart with versatility – Patterson can play Small Forward, Power Forward, and even Center. Not only can he post up anyone in basketball and hit a hook shot or pop out and hit a 15 foot jumper, but he has developed a consistent 3-point jumpshot. He is shooting 40% from downtown this year.

2. Has confidence and plays hard every game – He could shoot 0-20 and stink the gym up, but nobody would question how hard he fought and hustled. He is one of the toughest guys in college basketball.

3. Plays like a seasoned veteran throughout their career – PPat is a hard worker, good ball handler, has a nice jumper, top notch defender and rebounder, but most importantly he has a high basketball IQ. When the game gets a little sloppy or out of Kentucky’s hands, Patterson always keeps a cool head and never tries to do too much.

4. Be humble – There is really no need for me to even try to prove this. The guy defines humble.

5. Steps up when called upon – My one complaint about Calipari this season is his lack of commitment to get Pat the rock late in the game. But there is one situation that comes to my mind where Pat rose to the occasion. At Florida, with just under 5 minutes left in the ballgame, the Gators were a defensive stop away from blowing the lid off the arena while trying to take the lead from the Cats. Pat had different plans, as he hit a turnaround hook shot while getting fouled. My point is, Cal might not call his number often in late game situations, but when he does, you can count on #54 to capitalize.

By no means am I questioning Pat’s abilities, but on THIS team, he is just a role player. But a role player is exactly what we need. The last thing we need is someone out there trying to score every time they touch the rock. There isn’t enough to go around in terms of stats, but it’s everything else that 2Pat does is what makes him one of the most respected players in recent UK basketball history.

Awesome Day

Sarcasm… Two bad things happened today.

  1. Jodie Meeks-  One of my Top 5 favorite UK Basketball players has decided to forego his Senior year and enter the NBA Draft.  This hurst on multiple levels.  Jodie was the 1st player I ever followed during the recruiting process.  While he looked nothing like what I imagined, he was a pure shooter just like I thought.  It also hurst because with him, UK would have been a been a sure fire Final Four team.  Now, we have no real outside threat and that scares me.  We will still be alright without him, but it would have been nice to have him.
  2. USA Soccer- I root for the US, but they have never been and never will be my favorite team.  That title belongs to the Netherlands.  The US played defending World Cup Champion, Italy today in the Confederations Cup.  The US went up 1-0 on a p.k. but ended up getting beat 3-1.  Tim Howard is supposed to be a beast keeper, but he got beat twice on 35+ yard shots today.  One of which was shot by Giuseppe Rossi.  He would later score again.  Funny thing is, he is AMERICAN.  Born in New Jersey.  Maybe Howard just had a bad day, but still, you can’t have those against teams like Italy.  Here are reason why I hate that I care about the US Soccer Team:

Uniforms are gross.

Our ‘best’ player is the most over-rated player in the world.

Can’t keep U.S. talent in the U.S.

-No flash at all.  Boring Soccer.

-Won’t play young players and let them learn on the fly like the better countries.

-Always a disappointment.

-I’m sure there are more, but I can’t think of any at the moment…

 

 

Next up for the Red, White, and Blue?  BRAZIL!  Should be a laugher.

Oh yeah, my Kickball Team did win the company championship today, so that’s one good thing.

 

The Ball Kickers

The Ball Kickers

Should Jodie Meeks stay or go?

meeks

The last day for underclassmen to remove themselves from the NBA draft pool is June 15th. Don’t be suprised if Jodie takes about every second of that time to decide whether he wants to stay at Kentucky and enjoy the college life for one more year, or if he wants to go ahead and actually make playing basketball a job. But what’s the right decision for Jodie?

The rumors are already swirling that Meeks could be taken 15th overall by the Pistons. After his workout last week NBA teams seems to be finding out what UK fans already knew…Meeks is a hell of an athlete. Teams love his quickness and athleticism and it’s moving him up the draft boards. Good for him, bad for us.

Most of the projections are early 2nd round. Meeks is considered undersized for a wing in the NBA and it seems to be playing a factor on his draft projections. I’ve actually seen a couple of websites that say Meeks may not even get drafted. Collegehoopsnet.com says, “probably he’ll have to earn his keep in the minor leagues or Europe.” I guess they missed the Tennessee game. But as an NBA player, right now, Jodie is most comparable to our own Kelenna Azubuike who left early and started slow but now is a formidable player in the NBA.

But should he come back? Some people are saying that even if he comes back his status won’t improve much. But I don’t think that’s true. Everyone got to see the fascinating performances on ESPN last year so the hype surrounding Jodie is real. But he’s gotten negative marks for ball handling and his decision making with the ball in his hands. He can hit any shot from anywhere on the floor, but that doesn’t necessarily mean he should take the shot. Even Coach Cal marveled at the way Meeks could hit shots with 2 or 3 guys hanging off of him, then added, “He shouldn’t have to take shots like that.”

So yes, Meeks should come back. Calipari’s dribble-drive-motion offense is the perfect setup for Jodie’s game. He’ll be able to use his athleticism to become a slasher and not have to rely on the 3-pointer so much. He’ll have to make good decisions with the ball in his hands or else he won’t see much playing time and he’ll get the opportunity to improve his ball handling skills in his moves to the basket. It also helps that he’ll have more options in his offense so it will be impossible to key on just Jodie like most teams did near the end of the season last year.  He won’t score as many points if he comes back, but his assists should go up and his turnovers will go down. He will become a better basketball player, and the scouts will love him for it.

If you try to argue that he should make the jump and take the money, you’re an idiot. If he comes back and becomes a lottery pick, which is a definite possibility, he’ll get a contract that in the first year will make him 3 times the amount of an entire contract of a typical early 2nd round pick.

But none of that will matter. Why? Because Jodie isn’t that selfish. There’s a reason that his teammates were so happy for him when he dropped 55 on Bruce Pearl’s head. Because he’s a good guy, and a good teammate.

Jodie, I’m sorry for the program failing you so far. You came to Kentucky expecting great things and great teams. You’ve deserved better than what we’ve given you. So why would you leave when you finally have the chance to do what you came here to do…win.

Can’t wait to see you back in the blue and white, Jodie. Thanks for sticking around.

More love for Calipari

Here is a story by Fox Sport’s Jeff Goodman giving some more love to God John Calipari.

If Calipari lands John Wall AND Bledsoe, then I won’t know what to say except go ahead and hang up banner number 8.  It’s already sweet enough that he has recruited a top 25 team alone this season.

GJ Vilarino

The former UK signee has decided to go to Gonzaga.  Good move on his part — he will be a fan favorite before you know it with that lefty stroke.

Chills…

Sweet video and RtW needed a little bit of my favorite color…

Best Song Ever?

I saw this on Facebook then I saw it on KSR, so then I figure why not throw it up on RtW.