UK Basketball: Ryan Harrow ready to get his boogie on at Big Blue Madness
Kentucky guard Ryan Harrow said he is ready to show off his dance moves at tonight¿s Big Blue Madness at Rupp Arena. Harrow also does not play to cut off his flat-top haircut, he said during Thursday¿s UK¿media day. (Victoria Graff / October 12, 2012)
“Yeah, I’m dancing at madness. My sister told me I had to. I am always dancing at the house with her so I have to dance in front of everybody now,” said Harrow.
Not that he minds.
He sat out last year — UK’s national championship season — after transferring from ¿North Carolina State. Now he’s being counted on to be the starting point guard for coach John Calipari’s team.
“I¿am looking forward to it. This means this is the start of the season and I actually get to play this season,” Harrow said during UK’s Media Day Thursday. “I have not seen my family in a long time and I¿am looking forward to that.”
However, he faces a problem in connection with tonight’s Big Blue Madness at Rupp Arena.
“We only get a couple of tickets, but I¿have like 30 family members coming here tomorrow. I am just excited to see my family and play in front of them and get the season started,” Harrow said. “But I didn’t get 30 (tickets). They have to watch from home, some of them. I¿let my mom choose the people that get to come to the game. I didn’t want to deal with that.”
Could that make for some unhappy family members at maybe Christmas time?
“I don’t even get Christmas presents any more, so oh well,” Harrow laughed and said.
He was supposed to have already told UK¿officials Thursday what son he wanted played during his Madness introduction.
“I didn’t pick it out yet. I¿have so many songs that I¿might want to dance to that I will tell them later,” he said.
What if someone from UK¿went ahead and picked out a country music song for him?
“Then I would just have to hit a country dance. I would surprise myself because I wouldn’t know what to do,” the sophomore guard said.
One player who won’t be dancing at Madness is senior transfer Julius Mays.
“I¿am old school. No dancing for me,” Mays said. “I have heard about it (Madness), I have seen videos of it, but I still don’t think it’s going to be anything like living the experience tomorrow. It’s going to be a lot of fans, a lot of excitement, and everybody is just ready for the season to kick off.
“I am not nervous at all, but I am excited. I have seen the fans but seeing the gym sold out is going to be very exciting and I haven’t experienced anything like it.”
He was amazed by the number of fans that camped out for a chance just to get Big Blue Madness tickets.
“It just shows how dedicated and loyal our fans are,”¿Mays said. “I just can’t wait to see how good this is going to be.”
Styling: Harrow also announced Thursday that he would not cut his Nerlens Noel-like hair. After Noel signed with UK in April, Harrow decided to let his hair grow and get the same high-top haircut that Noel has.
“I’m going to keep it like this. A lot of people told me to keep it,” Harrow said. “Nerlens wants me to keep it. We think of it like ‘Kid-N-Play’. Plus the girls’ team really likes it, so I have to keep it.”
ESPN All-Access: Kentucky recently announced that it was allowing ESPN to have total access to the program for a series of shows it would have on the UK¿program. Calipari said UK¿initially said no because Kentucky did not need the additional exposure.
“I don't mind sharing. We have a lot of guys, and I'm not saying they're wrong, but I'm not sharing what I do with anybody. This is our secret. I've never been that way in my life. If you walked into my practice, I'm not hiding anything. I'm not embarrassed about how we do our jobs,” Calipari said. “I'm not embarrassed about our kids or how we coach. And look at me, I sleep good at night. I sleep like a baby at night. So I'm not worried about people being here. It doesn't matter to me.
“Then it was like, okay, we'll be good for our kids, and we decided, you know what, let them come in for a while and see how it plays out. Again, look, once something happens, we've got people 24/7, how can I find, what can I do? How do I? Well, whether ESPN's here or not, if something happens, what? They'll be here in two hours. So I feel comfortable with what we're doing and how we do it.
‘We'll let it go. Everybody's going to be mad. I know. Did I do it just because of that to aggravate people? Might have. I may have said that. Let's aggravate everybody and do this.”
Calipari said ESPN has already been to his house and his wife, Ellen, was even involved.
“They've been around my wife which is very unusual. She's very private,” Calipari said. “I did not want this to be about me. But I said from day one, this is not about me. It's about the program, the kids, the staff.
“What they want to see is how in the world does he get a young group to play that hard and be that unselfish in that period of time? Is that right? Now if you're not curious that way, it's just like you want to see nasty stuff. Well, fine, look at something else. But that's what I hope comes across that this is a good group of kids. They come together. They shared sacrifice.
“They know they're going to give up stuff. They work hard. They go to class. They do what they're supposed to. Good kids who are good students and trying to chase their dreams in under a magnifying glass that's ridiculous.”