Kentucky Basketball: 5 Reasons to Be Glad You're a Wildcats Fan

Bobby Reagan@uklefty22Featured ColumnistJune 11, 2013

Kentucky Basketball: 5 Reasons to Be Glad You're a Wildcats Fan

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    Kentucky basketball is one of the blue-bloods in college basketball and its fan base ranks as one of the, if not the, the most passionate in the country.

    With a recent national championship, a coach who understands the 'Kentucky Way', constant top recruiting classes and a storied history, there are plenty of reasons why being part of Big Blue Nation is something to brag about.

    However, what are the top reasons to stick your chest out if you're a Kentucky fan? We'll take a look at the top five reasons why life is good in Lexington.

5. Celebrities as the 'Y'

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    Every home game former players, stars and other famous people lead the crowd at Rupp Arena and join the cheerleaders to help spell out Kentucky. Placing their hands over their heads, they become the sole Y needed to finish the cheer.

    The list of names that has taken this honor in the past 10 years are as impressive as any. They include LeBron James, Joe B. Hall, Magic Johnson, Ashley Judd, John Wall, Randall Cobb, Tayshaun Prince and Patrick Patterson.

    You don't get this kind of fan fare anywhere else in America and Kentucky fans should embrace that they get to experience this. It shows the love former players and coaches have for their school as well as how much respect there is from others such as Magic Johnson.

4. Your Home Is Rupp Arena

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    Rupp Arena is one of the most recognizable courts in college basketball and has been home to Kentucky for over 37 years.

    Kentucky has won over 88 percent of the time when it plays at Rupp Arena, with a record of 494-62 since Rupp opened in 1976. What could be more impressive than the win-loss record, is the attendance records Kentucky has set at Rupp Arena.

    The Wildcats have lead the nation in attendance 25 different times since Rupp Arena opened, the most in college basketball. The Rupp Arena attendance record was set in 2010 in a game against Louisville when 24,479 members of Big Blue Nation filled the stands.

3. Top Recruits Year After Year

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    First it was John Wall, Eric Bledsoe and DeMarcus Cousins. Following that group was Brandon Knight, Terrence Jones and Doron Lamb. Then came Anthony Davis, Michael Kidd-Gilchrest, Kyle Wiltjer and Marquis Teague. After that group won a title, came a down year with Nerlens Noel, Archie Goodwin, Alex Poythress and Willie Cauley-Stein.

    Now, there is arguably the greatest recruiting class of all-time with six McDonald's All-American's joining forces in Lexington.

    There is truly no offseason for Kentucky and its fans since John Calipari has taken over the reigns in Lexington. Wildcat fans live and breathe Kentucky basketball 365 days a year and that includes the recruiting period.

    There may not be a more passionate and knowledgeable fan base when it comes to high school recruits and where they stand when it comes time to make a decision. Can it turn ugly at times, sure, but for the most part Kentucky fans are there to see what kind of talent Calipari brings in for the next season.

    There hasn't been this much talent flooding a school in a long time and if you're a Kentucky fan, this is the one thing you can truly say your school is the best at.

2. Defending John Calipari's Recruiting and Coaching Style

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    There is not a better recruiter in college basketball than John Calipari. However, that's not all Coach Cal is, as he has risen to become one of the best in-game coaches as well. You could make a case he's the best all-around coach in the game, but it's safe to say there aren't five coaches you would take before him to take over your school.

    The critics were always out for Calipari, that his teams weren't smart and he couldn't win with a young team. However, he's smashed both of those statements by winning a national title with a team made up of freshmen and sophomores as well as leading the Wildcats to an Elite Eight and a Final Four.

    Kentucky fans will make the point that Calipari is the best coach in college basketball, but that's because he understands what Big Blue Nation wants. He puts out a competitive team year after year and does his part to make sure he's seen in the community.

    His interactions with the fans have made him a fan-favorite and will be a Kentucky legend after he's left Lexington.

1. Come On, It's Kentucky. Does It Get Better?

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    What's there not to brag about if you're a Kentucky fan?

    Eight national titles, the most wins in NCAA history with 2,111, 15 Final Four appearances, the most NBA draft picks with 106, a record 55 McDonald's All-Americans wearing the blue and white and 93 winning seasons.

    Most importantly you are part of a fan base that most people find to be outrageous, because it's more than basketball in Kentucky. It has been said basketball in Kentucky is a religion and that's the way Big Blue Nation treats it.

    Wildcat fans have a proud history to brag about, but it's their present and future that should have them just as excited. With John Calipari as their head coach, Kentucky is primed to make another title run. No other school in the country has had the success the Wildcats have had in their last four years by going to an Elite Eight, Final Four and winning a title.