Tag Archives: Luke Geraghty

Local colleges look to exceed expectations

By Luke Geraghty

The 2011-2012 college basketball season was a great year for the local teams. Louisville and Kentucky each went to the Final Four with UK winning the championship. Indiana also had a nice run in the tournament by making it to the Sweet 16. Watching these teams make a run in the tournament seemed very unconventional. But with many polls having these teams in their preseason top five, people may start to grow accustomed to seeing these teams at the top of the polls.

For IU, they go into next year with practically the same team and then some. Point guard Yogi Ferrell and forwards Jeremy Hollowell and Hanner Perea will be a big contribution for the Hoosiers as freshmen next year. The Hoosiers also will get a boost from sophomore Cody Zeller, who decided to to return to school rather than entering the NBA draft. Zeller led the team in scoring and rebounding as a freshman. Joining Zeller will be seniors Christian Watford and Jordan Hulls as well as junior Victor Oladipo. The Hoosiers roster will have plenty of talent and depth. If they can stay healthy and get a boost from some of their younger players, a Final Four berth is possible.

U of L enters the next season with plenty of experience. The Cardinals will miss Kyle Kuric and Chris Smith, but everyone else returns, including some players who missed last year due to injuries. Rakeem Buckles, Mike Marra, and Stephan Van Treese all missed games due to injuries last year and they are expected to give big minutes off the bench next year. Senior point guard Peyton Siva may be the Preseason Big East Player of the Year and they will probably go as far as Siva takes them. Siva’s partner-in-crime, Russ Smith isn’t afraid to shoot and/or drive to the basket. Both Smith and Siva’s stealing ability will cause chaos for their opponents when they bring the ball up the floor. Sophomores Wayne Blackshear and Chane Behanan and junior Gorgui Dieng look to round out the starting line up while freshman Terry Rozier also looks to gain big minutes off the bench. If U of L can stay healthy, then they will certainly be a tough out in the NCAA tournament.

Coming off a national championship, UK will come into the next season with plenty of talent. Centers Nerlens Noel and Willie Cauley, forward Alex Poythress, and guard Archie Goodwin are apart of another top notch recruiting class for the Wildcats. UK’s strong recruiting class will make them a very talented team, but it is hard to pinpoint how good UK will be. UK’s top six scorers from last year’s team are gone. Freshmen Anthony Davis, Michael Kidd-Gilchrist, and Marquis Teague, as well as sophomores Doron Lamb and Terrence Jones, declared for the NBA draft, while Darius Miller graduated. Kyle Wiltjer will be team’s best returning player, averaging 5 points per game last year. With the majority of the team from last year gone and a lot of new faces coming in, it appears UK may have a rebuilding year for their standards. UK’s weaknesses will be the lack of experience and also the lack of a true legit player at the point guard position. If UK can withstand these weaknesses, another deep run may be in sight for the defending champs.

IU, UK and UL have always had passionate fan bases, but they have each had hardships pretty recently. Kelvin Sampson turned a winning IU program to a Big Ten bottom-dweller. While UK faced an unheard of NIT berth just four years ago. While U of L faced distractions from their head coach Rick Pitino’s off-the-court problems as well as back-to-back first round exits in 2010 and 2011. However, each of them have bounced back to the peak of their game, making Kentuckiana the best place to be for the college basketball season next year and maybe for years to come.

Indiana and Kentucky prepare for intense tournament rematch

By Luke Geraghty

Ever since selection Sunday, fans around Kentuckiana have been wondering if a rematch between UK and IU will take place in the Sweet 16. This past weekend, both the Cats and the Hoosiers won their their round games to help advance to the Sweet 16. The rivalry between UK and IU had been down for a few years since IU was rebuilding. However, when IU beat UK on a last second three pointer in December, the rivalry is as intense as ever.

Both UK and IU came into the NCAA tournament with not a lot of momentum after both teams lost in their conference tournaments. However, both teams have fought back to win their first two games of the tournament. UK beat Western Kentucky and Iowa State quite easily. IU beat New Mexico State handily, but saw themselves in a much tougher battle with Virginia Commonwealth. Nevertheless, getting a win in the NCAA Tournament is crucial no matter what the margin is. In order to get a win, both teams will have to play their best.

For UK, the key to getting a win will rest on their front court. The size and strength of UK’s front court makes them the most talented in the country. Freshman Anthony Davis may go down as the best freshman to ever play at UK. His ability to block shots makes it extremely difficult for any player to get a shot off against him.

Sophomore Terrence Jones joins Davis in the front court. Jones is a great all around player who could have been a lottery pick had he declared for the draft last year. Keep him off the offensive glass will be a tough task for the Hoosiers.

In order for UK to win, they will need to keep Davis and Jones out of foul trouble. In their previous meeting, Davis had been in foul trouble which made his minutes limited. This was probably the biggest factor in that game. Also in that game, Jones had trouble scoring and rebounding. It was one of his worst games while playing at UK. If UK can get them going, and get some contributions from their backcourt, UK will find themselves in the Elite Eight.

For IU, getting another win against UK will be very difficult. However, if IU uses a similar game plan like they did in the first meeting, they have a shot.

Getting Davis in foul trouble will be critical for the Hoosiers. Freshman Cody Zeller may not be able to score on Davis, but if he can draw fouls on Davis, that will be a victory in itself. They will also need to pray that Jones has a similar game as he did before. IU will also need a contribution from their perimeter players. IU has was it takes to get hot from three-point range, but UK has been known to be a stingy team when guarding the perimeter. This is probably the most important area for the Hoosiers in this game.

Getting to the Sweet 16 has been a great accomplishment for the Hoosiers. IU has the better coach in Tom Crean and a lot of great players, but UK is more talented. If Davis and Jones stay out of foul trouble, then UK is almost unbeatable against any team. UK will get off to a strong start and will hold off the Hoosiers 78-68

Geraghty’s sports bucket list

By Luke Geraghty

As a sports fan, I have been to many sporting events. From college basketball to the NBA and from peewee football to the NFL, I have seen the excitement that sports has to offer. However, there are many things that I still have on my sports bucket list I have not done yet. I narrowed my long list to the top five places and events I would like to visit.

#5: The Rose Bowl

Opening in 1902, the Rose Bowl is one of the most historic college football stadiums in the U.S. Its Pasadena setting gives a beautiful background to an already beautiful stadium. Fans from all across the country come to watch the bowl game which features the Big Ten and Pac-12 champions. Because of this, it has been the highest attended bowl game since 1945. The great setting and tradition of the Rose Bowl makes it one of the best sporting venues in the U.S.

#4: Phog Allen Fieldhouse

One of the most historic places in college basketball, Phog Allen Fieldhouse is a nightmare for the visiting team. Since Feb. 20, 1994, Kansas has won over 95 percent of its regular season home games. Their home court was recognized as being the loudest college basketball arena in the country by ESPN magazine in 2010. Around 5,000 of the 16,000 seat arena is dedicated to the students. With a lot of the other seats bought by season ticket holders, it makes attending the games very difficult.

#3: The FIFA World Cup

The Olympics are supposed to be biggest sporting event around the world, but the FIFA World Cup might be an exception. People all across the world tune in to watch this extravaganza. Countries put aside their problems just to cheer on their team all the way to the FIFA World Cup Final. Stadiums are filled with people from all across the world. From the Americas to Asia, all of the cultures unite in one place. The U.S. last hosted a world cup in 1994 so they are not exactly due to receive one in the near future.

#2: Super Bowl

Super Bowl Sunday is constantly one of the most watched events every year. The top two teams in arguably the most popular sports league give the people plenty of reason to watch the this incredible event every year. However, attending the Super Bowl can be very expensive. It is practically impossible to purchase a ticket less then $1,000 in less you win it in some competition. This can make it hard for the casual fan to a purchase a ticket, but if you are willing to make it your vacation for the year then it could work out.

#1 Fenway Park

Home of the Boston Red Sox, my favorite Major League Baseball team, Fenway Park might be the most unique sports venue in America. From the green monster to Pesky’s Pole, this park has a great history. Fenway Park opened in 1912, making it the oldest ballpark in the MLB. Much like the other places on the list, attending a game at Fenway Park is very difficult. Fenway Park is one of the smallest ballparks in the MLB and with a large fan base, it’s hard to find an available ticket. Quite possibly the biggest regular season game in Red Sox history will take place on April 20. This will be the day that the Red Sox celebrate Fenway’s 100th anniversary. Something tells me it is not a coincidence that the team they will be playing are their arch rivals, the New York Yankees.

Each of these places brings a great tradition that draws attention of avid sports fan like me and even though they all will be difficult to attend, I will refuse to cross them off my list.

Tonight’s basketball game helps community fight cancer

By Luke Geraghty and Blake Dykes

Tonight’s boys’ basketball game against Jennings County will be a Coaches vs. Cancer theme. Every student who dresses up in formal attire and wears tennis shoes will get into the game for free. Boice.net will donate $5 to every student who dresses accordingly. There will also be auction items donated by Coca-Cola, the Hartog family, and Todd Sharp from University of Louisville. The money will go to the American Cancer Society.

Athletic director Jeff Cerqueira said tonight’s game really emphasizes community involvement.

“We will be passing buckets around during the third quarter,” he said. “Anyone who wants to write a check can go online to cancer.org/coaches.”

Coaches vs. Cancer has been popular among the college level. Some of the most premiere teams square off at Madison Square Garden during the invitational.

“It started at college and it has trickled down to the high school level,” Cerqueira said.

Although this is the first year Coaches vs. Cancer is being held, the plan to Cerqueira is to make it every year.

“The plan is to have it every year and hopefully build on it so it can become a school/community project.”

Wrestlers prepare for Saturday’s invitational

By Tyler Coleman and Luke Geraghty

With the wrestling season in full swing, the team will have an opportunity to display its progress to their opposing schools at the FC-hosted Invitational tomorrow. Strong competition from schools such as Corydon, Seymour, Vincennes Lincoln, will require the Highlanders to bring everything they have to the mat.

Junior Ian Bagwell said the team needs to utilize offensive tactics in order to overcome their opponents.

“We all need to wrestle how we want, not how the other guy makes us,” said Bagwell.

In order to reach their intended offensive level, some rigorous performance will be necessary.

The most important element will be through taking more shots and being aggressive, said Bagwell.

“We need to make our opponent never want to step out on the mat with us again,” he said.

Head coach Brandon Sisson agreed with this tactic.

“The style I like is for our guys to be very offensive, scoring lots of points.”

To best achieve this, they are looking for lots of pins, takedowns, and bonus point wins, said junior Adam Hudson.

While planning to put on their best performance possible, the team remains focused on working hard everyday at practice, said junior Jackson Randall

“We need to make sure we are doing everything it takes to be the best,” said Randall.

With the help of these methods, Sisson expects the team to do well all across the board.

“For the first time, I feel very confident in everybody we have in a weight class,” said Sisson.

Last year’s meet came down to a final match between FC and St. X, however they will not be attending this year.

“It’s disappointing we won’t see them this year, we are very similar schools,” said Sisson.

Even though the team plans to put on one of their strongest performances at home, the remainder of the season will continue to increase in competition for them.

“This meet is like a stepping stone, we build as the season goes on, and peak right before sectionals,” said Sisson.

The meet will start at 8:30 a.m. The team will look to keep their momentum after beating rival Providence yesterday, 72-12.