Party Hangover

By: Derek Forrest
By: Derek Forrest

I am still feeling the effects of the CBA Draft party had over at the Applebee's in Pikeville on Tuesday night.

As I sit here playing Tiger Woods 08 with fantasy football guru Peter O'Connor., I am still feeling the effects of the CBA Draft party had over at the Applebee's in Pikeville on Tuesday night. It was the second get together for the CBA draft and the Miners as they prepared  for a second season of exciting basketball action.

As you can see from the photo below, the Reno's Diamond Girls were out enjoying the night as they were handing out free Miners swag along with entertaining the Applebee's crowd. Exactly how they entertained the crowd you may ask? Well I do remember at point in the night where the PA announcer said to the crowd, as the girls were handing out the EK Miner license plates, "if you cheer loud enough, I am sure the Diamond Girls will show you anything you want." Seriously, true story.

Diamond Girls choreographer Jillian Brown Vickery is seen below showing some of her dance moves as Head Coach of the East Kentucky Miners Kevin Keathley was busy in the back making picks for the 2008-09 CBA draft.

So as for the picks, lets briefly recap. The Miners selected Roy Bright, a 6'6 forward from Delaware State as their first round pick in the draft.

Bright was one of the top recruits from North Carolina coming out of high school and was recruit by the University of Cincinnati. Bright then found himself transferring to Delaware State where he averages 16.3 points per game and 4.8 boards.

In round two the Miners selected Emmanuel Little.

Little was a member of the North Dakota Fight Sioux, and will now have a chance to be the one of the newest EK Miners. Little is a native of Chicago and was named to the All-North Central Conference team in his two years he spent as a Sioux. He is a 6'5 forward and led his team in scoring in each of his two season.

Round three belonged to Charles Rhodes.

Rhodes may be familiar to those of you who keep up with the SEC as last year he roamed the court for the Bulldogs of Mississippi State. As a Bulldogs, Rhodes 17.4 points per game and 7.8 boards per game last year. And if you want something closer to home, in the one game versus Kentucky last year on January 15th, Rhodes dropped 12 points in 30 minutes shooting 5 of 8 from the floor. Last year, he was also named the to First Team All SEC. Word around Miners camp is that this guy is a serious player and if signed by the Miners will be named the CBA Rookie of the Year (People, you heard it here first, haha).

In round four, the Miners selected Rashad West, a 6/1 guard out of Hampton.

A member for the Pirates last year, West led his team in scoring with 17.2 points per game and shot 38% from the floor. The
steady guard led Hampton to the MEAC championship in 2006, claiming the MEAC Tournament MVP Award along the way. Last year he was also named the the MEAC second team.

In round number five, the Miners select Terrance Whiters.

Although pictured with Layola, he later became a Wonder Boy in all sense of the word(yes he played for the Arkansas Tech Wonderboys). A native of Baltimore, Maryland, Whiters was second on the team in scoring averaging 17 points per game last year and led the team with 6 board per game.

And finally the six round pick went to Brandon Cotton.

Cotton, was a member of the Detroit Mercy Titans, but before joining the Titans, he was a Spartan, of Michigan State that is. (Oh, by the way, if the Detroit Mercy sounds sounds familiar, that's because ESPN college basketball analysis and now College Basketball Hall of Famer Dick Vitale began his coaching career there, way back in the day in 1973.) Cotton was a member of the McDonald's All American west team back in 2003 and averaged over 18 points per game in his career as a Titan.

For all involved at the CBA draft party, I know there was a lot of hard work and effort put forth by the Miner organization to make the second year of this expansion team even better than last. Don not forget that 2007-08 saw the Miners finish the year at 26-22. And, you can mention the Miners without acknowledging the fact that they did put up a Pro basketball record of 194 points in a single game.

The Miners have also signed some familiar names that will be returning this season. Jason McCleish will be back this season as well as Mike Crain.

Finally, I will leave you with something to think about. The Miners are only days away from naming a huge player signing. I already know who it is, but it would be wrong of me to give that away. I can say that he is a former UK basketball player. So what I would like to know from you all is:

Which UK Wildcat do you think the Miners will be signing in the next few days?

I am interested in hearing your thoughts, so throw some names out and have some fun.

Until then, I'll catcha later. (And if you were wondering if I beat fantasy guru Peter O'Connor in Tiger 08, the answer is yes, I won by a whopping 11 strokes.)

- Rock

(CBA Draft party pictures courtesy of my friends over at the Appalachian News Express, Justin Holbrook)
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