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BOZICH | Monday Muse: Lilly King for President; Big Vote for Louisville, ACC

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IU swimmer Lilly King gets her showdown with a Russian swimmer with doping violations Monday night. IU swimmer Lilly King gets her showdown with a Russian swimmer with doping violations Monday night.

LOUISVILLE, Ky. (WDRB) – The first Must See Moment of the 2016 Summer Olympics does not involve Michael Phelps (sorry, Boomer), Simone Biles or Kevin Durant.

Monday night will be The Lilly King Show.

Ever wish an opposing college basketball coach would speak out about the nonsense that went down at North Carolina or an opposing pitcher would have stuck one in the rib cages of Mark McGwire, Sammy Sosa and Barry Bonds?

I mean, really speak out not tap dance around their feelings?

That’s what King, a sophomore swimmer at Indiana University, will try to do in Rio Monday night.

That’s why King, a Hoosier who grew up about 100 miles West down I-64 in Evansville, earned the coveted leadoff spot in the Monday Muse.

Lilly King competes. The Monday Muse loves that.

1. King of the Pool

King has dedicated her life to winning the gold medal in the women’s 100-meter breaststroke. She traveled to Rio on The Straight Talk Express.

To win the gold Monday night, King must defeat Yulia Efimova, a Russian swimmer who has failed a pair of doping tests and should not be competing in the Olympics.

When Efimova won the first semifinal heat Sunday night, she waved an index finger at competitors, signaling her belief she has done no wrong – and that she was the swimmer to beat.

King was not amused. She waved an index finger back at the TV screen from the Olympic ready room.

Game on. King then came out and swam a faster qualifying time than Efimova. When asked her reaction to the behavior of her competitor, King was decidedly not-PC. She dealt with the cheaters (and the Russians) the way they should be dealt with -- straight talk.

"You know, you're shaking your finger No. 1 and you've been caught for drug cheating, I'm just not, you know, not a fan," King said during a TV interview.

This should be an Olympic moment.

And a standing ovation for Lilly King.

2. Eight or Nine ACC Conference Games?

A major football decision looms for the Atlantic Coast Conference, according to this story by the Atlanta Journal-Constitution.

Athletic directors must decide if the ACC will follow the lead of the Big Ten, SEC and Pac-12 and move to a nine-game conference schedule. That is reportedly the move ESPN wants the league to make to improve its programming inventory.

But Georgia Tech AD Mike Bobinski said there is also a Play B – stick with eight league games but upgrade the non-conference schedule to a pair of games against Power 5 opponents.

For Louisville, that would mean, eight league games, the rivalry game with Kentucky and a 10th game against (hypothetically) Texas, Michigan or UCLA. I’d be fine with plugging Western Kentucky into that 10th spot.

I like Plan B.

How about you? Please vote in my poll atop The Muse.

3. John Calipari Did What?

If you’ve ever written anything even mildly critical of John Calipari (nobody I know), you’ve likely heard from him, one of his assistant coaches (hello, Kenny Payne) or friends (hi, Williams Wesley).

That is what makes this story posted at a blog titled -30- (newspaper folks get the title), totally believable.

It involves Cal, New York Post sports columnist Mike Vacarro and the St. John’s basketball job.

Give it a read by clicking this link. You’ll enjoy it.

4. The Latest Hot Seat Numbers

I don’t agree with the rankings, but you cannot start a college football season without a look at one of the latest Hot Seat rundowns, especially with this one from, containing four names with local connections.

No, Charlie Strong is not on top – yet. He could move up if the Longhorns lose their opener to Notre Dame again.

Darrell Hazel of Purdue has the pole position, followed by Kevin Sumlin of Texas A&M. Then it’s three spots back to Strong at No. 5, followed by Mark Stoops of Kentucky at eight and Kevin Wilson of Indiana at 10.

Stoops and Wilson do not belong. They’re not going anywhere.

5. Patrick Towles Still Has It

I’m not sure if former Kentucky quarterback Patrick Towles is going to have a big year at Boston College this season. I know the Eagles are counting on him to play better than he played for Mark Stoops in 2015.

But Towles has already found a path into the headlines without throwing a touchdown pass or interception.


Not by making the pre-season watch list for the Unitas Award. Every veteran quarterback does that.

Towles has earned national attention by dedicating his 2016 season to Harambe, the gorilla who was shot and killed at the Cincinnati Zoo in late May after the animal grabbed a young boy who slid into the gorilla’s territory. Towles grew up in suburban Cincy. Who knew he was a Harambe fan?

Calling Harambe “the realist there ever was,” Towles will start his quest to honor his fallen friend Sept. 3 against Georgia Tech. Towles also gets another crack at Louisville, when the Cardinals visit Chestnut Hill on Nov. 5.

6. Go Time for Onuaku, Ulis & Company

Have you started to wonder what Chinanu Onuaku, Tyler Ulis, Jamal Murray and several other former local stars will look like in their NBA uniforms?

Wonder no more.

Simply click on this link and study a picture the NBA shared from a recent rookie orientation session.

Onuaku is wearing No. 21 on the far right in a Rockets’ jersey. Ulis stands in the middle of the photo holding a basketball. Murray is on the left-center in a sky blue Nuggets’ uniform. Labissiere is standing in the rear left, representing the Sacramento Kings.

Won't be long. Training camp starts in less than two months.

7. Tubby’s Big Catch

Things had not been going great this summer for former Kentucky coach Tubby Smith during his first big recruiting push at Memphis. In fact, Smith lost center Nick Marshall, the guy who was supposed to be the best player in the Tigers’ 2016 incoming class.

No wonder Smith interrupted a family vacation as the Tigers announced the arrival of Chad Rykhoek, a 6-foot-11 center who arrives as a grad transfer from Baylor.

Injuries and other issues made it difficult for Rykhoek to contribute in Waco. But Smith needed a big man – and got one. Even Smith’s toughest critics understand that Smith is one of the best at coaching guys up.

8. Who Owns Mike Trout? A Former UK Pitcher

Sorry Bryce Harper, I think we can all agree that Angels’ outfielder Mike Trout is the best young player in baseball. Hit, run, throw, the works.

Trout celebrated his 24th birthday Sunday in Seattle – and his celebrating was limited to some fancy work Trout did with his glove.

Credit former University of Kentucky pitcher James Paxton, a left-handed starter as well as a former top draft pick of the Mariners.

Trout struck out four times and you can credit the first three to Paxton. It was only the fourth time in his career that Trout has earned a golden sombrero.

This was no fluke. Paxton has now faced Trout 20 times in the major leagues and Trout has whiffed in half of those at bats, earning only two hits.

“I can’t pick his stuff up,” Trout told the Orange County Register.

Apparently not.

9. Poll Results I

What’s the Number One question facing the University of Louisville football team?

Improved offensive line play 73.7 percent

Consistent QB play 15.4 percent

Replacing Rankins, Burgess 6.8 percent

Improved special teams 4.1 percent

10. Poll Results II

Which team plays a more difficult non-conference schedule?

Louisville 88.9 percent

Kentucky 11.1 percent.

Copyright 2016 WDRB Media. All Rights Reserved.

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