Last mission to repair the Hubble telescope Hubble space telescope discoveries have enriched our understanding of the cosmos. In this special report, you will see facts about the Hubble space telescope, discoveries it has made and what the last mission's goals are.
For their own good
Fifty years ago, they were screwed-up kids sent to the Florida School for Boys to be straightened out. But now they are screwed-up men, scarred by the whippings they endured. Read the story and see a video and portrait gallery.
Fill out this form to email this article to a friend
Kentucky victim of success
A 15th straight NCAA bid doesn't satisfy fans used to better than a No. 8 seed.
By ANTONYA ENGLISH
Published March 15, 2006
If you had told Tubby Smith four months ago that Kentucky would be 21-12 at the end of the regular season and entering this week's NCAA Tournament as a No. 8 seed, he likely would have been insulted.
These days, he's just thankful to still be playing. But all is not well in Lexington.
How bad is it? The running joke is, "Did you ever think you'd live long enough to see the Kentucky women earn a higher seed (No. 5)?"
"We haven't won as many games this year as we usually do, and it's tough," senior guard Ravi Moss said. "We have a big fan base and everything like that, so they want to see us win. So when you are not winning as much as you are accustomed to, they are going to get a little upset. We're trying to play it game by game. I think we have been playing a lot better. Hopefully we can continue to play well and showcase our talent this week."
At Kentucky, this just isn't the way it's supposed to be. And if the reaction by fans at last week's SEC tournament is any indication, nobody's pleased right now.
"Yeah, it has an effect on everybody," said Smith, 240-70 in his ninth season at Kentucky. "When you lose (12) games, I am not happy, they (fans) are not happy. Nobody is pleased with it, especially when you feel like you can be better. Knowing that we have the type of talent that we have, we just didn't do it."
In fairness, the Wildcats earned their 15th consecutive tournament bid this week, something most schools would consider an accomplishment. But it has been a tumultuous season for Kentucky. Sophomore center Randolph Morris was suspended for 14 games the first half of the season after infractions related to his attempt to leave school early for the NBA. (He has since averaged 13.6 points and 5.8 rebounds and has scored in double figures 16 of the past 19 games.) Kentucky has struggled off and on with its outside shooting, and Smith has started 10 lineups.
Kentucky had six losses in its first 15 games, to Indiana, North Carolina, Iowa and Kansas among them. They went 6-6 to finish the regular season.
"It has been a little up and down, but as seniors we have been through it before," senior guard Brandon Stockton said. "So we just try to take it day by day and deal with it and try to make the best of it."
And the players have had a lot to deal with, particularly the growing speculation about Smith, from rumors that he'll be let go to others that he's looking toward the NBA. Those who know him best say Smith won't let the pressure run him off.
"Orlando "Tubby' Smith is not built that way, not cut that way," said CBS analyst Tim Brando, who has broadcast SEC games all of Smith's tenure. "As a matter of fact, he might be more inclined to stick it out and show them. That may actually drive him to be better."
"He just does his job," said Florida coach Billy Donovan, who was an assistant with Smith at Kentucky. "That's probably the plainest and simplest way to put it. He just goes in there and does his job and worries about the things he can control and worries about the things he can have an impact and effect on, and that's probably as coaches what we all need to do. But he has a great ability to do that."
It's a good thing. After Saturday's loss to South Carolina in the SEC tournament, it was clear Kentucky fans are growing weary of this troubled season.
Yet in the midst of all the criticism, Smith is looking at the positive side. He said though the Wildcats didn't win a regular-season or tournament championship as they had planned, he believes they are prepared to make a strong run in the upcoming tournament. Kentucky will play UAB in the opening round.
"We know we didn't play up to our full potential," Smith said. "I think we learned a lot about ourselves. We had some players see the floor who haven't been playing much lately, guys like Shagari (Alleyne) and Rekalin (Sims). Their play was a bright spot over the weekend.
"I thought had we been able to make it to the championship game, we might have gotten a higher seed. We're playing the right way, although we didn't do some things at the end of the game against South Carolina. We didn't execute the proper way. We didn't guard the three very well down the stretch. We had been defending extremely well before the South Carolina game. Rebounding seems to be improving. I like the way were playing right now."