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Nothing But Net: with Special Guest, Rick Howlett

If it wasn’t for bad luck… UFF!! You know how the old saw goes. Now, Louisville’s continued free fall from national prominence becomes an even harsher reality with forward Rakeem Buckle’s ACL injury. An injury that keeps him off the hardwood until the 2013-14 season. IF he stays around. Rak hurt his knee in Monday’s game in Milwaukee, which saw the Cards blow a 16 point lead to Marquette, then suffer yet another lethal injury to their already decimated front line. Coupled with ineptitude from the free throw line, a complete meltdown of their outside shooting, foul troubles and a bewildering disconnect offensively. Now, the Cards are most definitely hosting an NIT opening round game. UK’s ‘Cats continue to adapt to changing situations on the court, demonstrating an ability to either run opponents into the hardwood or grind it out in slow tempo situations. Kidd-Gilchrist and Davis are neck and neck in the Top Freshman of the Year race. In other news, Kansas hands Baylor their first loss. And Michigan’s Trey Burke is emerging as one of the top point guards in the nation; a true Freshman, no less.

WFPL’s Rick Howlett joins Matt and Mark, as they survey the current hoops landscape and opine on what fixes, if any, these teams need and can enact on this edition of Nothing But Net.

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Nothing But Net: Can Cards’ Freefall Be Fixed?

Looking sharp and feeling dull?

The last two days’ worth of discussions on the state of Rick Pitino’s Cardinals has centered around what’s wrong, how low can they go and can the slide be stopped? Nor does talk of the slump seems like an over-reaction; 1-4 in the last five games is cause for alarm. 1-3 in the Big East is a hard hole to climb out of, too. C.L. Brown, Rick Bozich (both with the erstwhile C-J), Mike Rutherford of CardChronicle and NBN’s contributing pundit, c d kaplan have all penned insightful columns asking the right questions about the red bird nosedive. Is the NIT the best we can hope for in the post-season? Is there a “cancer” on the team, as some suggest? And where does responsibility lie?

We’ll also push away from the Card Criticism Buffet and look at the third team in the Division One community who might be be one win away from punching their ticket to the Final Four. Please join Matt and Mark in this edition of Nothing But Net, while watching the snow float by your window; we have the insights and the beat.

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Nothing But Net: Slipping Away

Is the Cards’ season slipping away? Dunno. I do know Matt looked at me last night after we’d taped yesterday’s Nothing But Net and said, “What if they lose to Providence tonight?” What if, indeed. Last night’s game looked like there is something seriously wrong, attitude and psyche wise, with the 2011-12 Cards squad.

And I’d be dishonest if I stated I knew what THAT is. I’m not in the practices and locker room. So, I turn to music to salve my discontent. And pray I’m wrong

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Nothing But Net: Trouble Right Here in River City?

Every picture tells a story, don’t it? Don’t it??!!

Remember the state of the Cards three weeks ago? 12-0, praise for Coach Rick Pitino (CRP) from all quarters, and his statements that this year’s squad was the most fun he’s ever had coaching? Then came Georgetown; not unexpected, but a game that should have been won. Then UK; yeah, totally expected. Then, Notre Dame and the 2OT tilt? Ruh-ro!! 1-2 in the Big East, and suddenly the drum beats on the Ohio are calling for CRP’s head, or at least an explanation. All these developments have the Card faithful looking wistfully to Lexington. AND Bloomington, where Tom Crean’s Hoosiers have emerged as a very legit national basketball player. What happened, and what’s ahead? Hear what Matt and Mark have to say in this week’s edition of Nothing But Net, the sports report that swings.

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Nothing But Net: A Brief History of the Rivalry Game

A thoughtful, well-produced video appetizer for tomorrow’s Louisville v. Kentucky tilt. It’s a brief history of the Battle of the Bluegrass. Enjoy! And may the very best and brightest await you in the New Year, from Matt and Mark.

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Nothing But Net: The Battle for the Commonwealth

The date circled on the calendars of many hoops fans in the Commonwealth of Kentucky is fast approaching. IF records hold fast, it will be 13-0 Louisville Cardinals visiting the 12-1 Cats of UK. But, uh, not so fast. The Georgetown Hoyas, the surprise of the Big East, pay a visit to the Bucket first, and offers the stiffest challenge Pitino’s young Cards have faced to date this season. Everyone knows Georgetown is for real, despite losing Austin Freeman, Chris Wright and Julian Vaughn; Henry Sims is a legit Big East MVP. While UK and U. of L. will be the number 3 and 4 ranked squads in the land, respectively, Louisville may have their first loss hung on them by the methodical and consistent Hoyas. See what Matt and Mark have to say (and play) on Nothing But Net, the hoops report that swings.

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Nothing But Net: Season’s Greetings!!

Merry Chris Smith!!

To all our listeners
Much good cheer,
Good luck to those cagers
That you hold dear.

To Kyle Kuric
and Gorgui Dieng,
Hope you can grab
That championship ring.

To Cal’s Cats,
And Murray State Racers,
And please no injuries
To NBA’s Pacers.

Another crown
For Scotty D.’s Knights,
And Cincy Bearcats!
Avoid those fights!!!

And to our listeners,
Both far and near,
May your holidays be filled
With all you hold dear.

Happy Holidays to all,  from Nothing But Net
(we’ll be back next week!)

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Nothing But Net: Goliath Falls; X-Men, Bearcats Brawl

Statistically, college basketball numbers don’t truly add up until teams are about a dozen games into their respective campaigns. But here are some numbers that are irrefutable: 73-72 and 78-67. Or, 1 and 2. Put another way, the number one and number two hoops squads in the country fell 73-72 and 78-67, respectively, sending a shockwave through the land. The epicenter has to be Bloomington, IN, where the Hoosiers pulled off what many—including myself—thought was unimaginable, upsetting Calipari’s talented, but young, Wildcats. A Sully-less Buckeyes squad also took it on the chin at one of the most legendary venues in the land, the Kansas Jayhawk’s Phog Allen fieldhouse. If that’s not enough, a brawl of unimaginable proportions took place down the road in the Queen City, no doubt resulting in lengthy suspensions involving two to three pugilists each from Xavier and Cincinnati, who took off the gloves, followed by the Bearcat’s coach Mick Cronin pulling no punches in an emotional, (and refreshing), no-holds-barred 13 minute post-game press conference. Matt and Mark will analyze what transpired on an unforgettable Saturday in men’s college basketball on Nothing But Net, the sports report that swings.

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Nothing But Net, with Special Guest, c d kaplan

Matt & Mark are joined by Seedy K, aka the Culture Maven, aka c d kaplan, for an in-depth look at the past week’s hoops happenings. We’ll get c d’s take on two tough wins for local heroes, the Cats and Cards—both survived games against top twenty opponents by a combined total of four points. Plus, a preview of UK’s next big tilt against the surging Indiana Hoosiers next Saturday, a discussion about the Yum!’s-overly-commercial-hoops-experience, and a few takes on squads to watch for, like Missouri’s Tigers and JTIII’s much improved Hoyas. All this, and the usual mirth and mayhem c d brings. I wonder if he’ll have a few words for Coach K’s coaching milestone? It’s this week on Nothing But Net, the sports report that swings!

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Nothing But Net: Cards Rocked (by Injuries), Cats Roll

The University of Louisville Cardinals basketball team continues to fall to a plague of injuries that has reached brobdingagian proportions. Is it me, or were there more players in street clothes Monday night, than in uniforms. And “helmets” for practice? REALLY Coach Pitino? Not Flak jackets?? UK continues to soar, and beat their chests way too much, with a much anticipated date against North Carolina’s Tar Heels on Saturday. Bellarmine also is laying waste to the opposition. Indiana (!) is still undefeated, Missouri looks more and more like a squad to fear, as does Marquette. All this and more on this week’s episode of Nothing But Net, the sports report that swings.

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