‘Everything is still unreal’: Eastern Ky. coal miner serves as “Y” at UK Basketball game

WATCH | Coalminer pictured at UK game Michael McGuire
Published: Nov. 11, 2022 at 10:14 PM EST
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LEXINGTON, Ky. (WKYT) - Last month, Big Blue Nation and the world, fell in love with an eastern Kentucky coal miner who went viral from a photo at Kentucky Basketball’s Blue-White game. Friday, Micheal McGuire and his family got the Wildcat treatment at tonight’s game against Duquesne.

Micheal McGuire became a Kentucky Basketball star, without ever stepping on the court. The eastern Kentucky coal miner went viral last month after Head Coach John Calipari shared a photo of him and his son, Easton, at the Blue-White scrimmage in Pikeville.

“That was a normal day for us,” Micheal’s wife, Mollie said. “So for a normal evening out to turn into ‘you’re the coal miner! You’re the coal miner’s wife!’ and you’re like, ‘yep that’s us.’”

Micheal had gone straight from the coal mine to the scrimmage. Sue Kinneer took the famous photo when she saw Micheal and his son.

Coach Cal invited the McGuires to come to a game of their choice and get VIP treatment. They chose the Kansas game. Then Cal called again.

“I actually come home from work and found out about it,” Micheal said. “I was shocked when I came home and found that out.”

They met the team, the coaches, and sat right behind the bench during the game.

“I think for Easton to actually meet Oscar and see how tall he is up close, is going to be a lot more exciting you know, because Easton is like, ‘he’s super tall!’” Mollie said. “But he’s only seen him from far off.”

The royal treatment did not end there. Micheal was the special guest “Y” during the cheer team’s spell out of Kentucky.

“We made a lot of new connections, new friends, and heard some amazing stories,” said Mollie, “It’s brought a lot of joy to our hearts. It’s reached a lot of people just by Micheal being a dad who shows up and is there. That’s not something that always happens in present day. So, I’m glad he’s appreciated for what he does for his family.”

A man and his family, who are a perfect example of the heart and soul of hardworking Kentuckians and Big Blue Nation.