Memorable moments from Big Blue Madness 2021

Big Blue Madness returned to a normal time and location on Friday night at the Rupp Arena. Thousands of fans clad in Kentucky blue got their first glimpse of the UK men’s and women’s basketball teams, as well as the 24-time champion national cheerleading team and the finalist national dance team.

And it was like the Cats and the Big Blue Nation never missed a beat. The excitement and passion was evident all night long in the first open training opportunity for the two British basketball teams.

There are always a number of memorable moments at Big Blue Madness and this year has been no different. Here are the best moments of Friday night.

The return of Big Blue Nation

Last year’s Big Blue Madness was a virtual event due to COVID-19 restrictions. But this year the event returned to the Rupp Arena, which was packed with enthusiastic fans. The Big Blue Nation showed their cats a lot of love and the men’s and women’s teams put on a show in return.

Shoot cats

The three-point shooting competition showed that the British head coach Jean Calipari will have a lot of options behind the arc this season. CJ Frédéric won the competition but Davion Mintz, Dontaie Allen, Tyty Washington Jr. and Kellan grady all also had their moments.

Toppin takes the dunk contest

Jacob Toppin was the winner of the Friday night dunk contest. Toppin had a pair of athletic dunks including a basic dunk where he caught the ball off the side of the back panel and converted the dunk at the end.

Green Red-hot

The women’s three-point shooting competition was considered the Rhyne howard Spectacle. But the All-American was dominated by her classmate and a native of Harlan County. Blair Green finally. Green, who reached 33.3% from behind the arc last season, shot it to a much higher clip Friday night en route to victory.

The Elzy “Air” – Uh

Kentucky Women’s Basketball Head Coach Kyra Elzy made a memorable entry Friday night. After his team was introduced to the crowd at Rupp Arena, Elzy pushed back from the ceiling of the building to the floor. She followed that up with a dance with her son before setting the crowd on fire before her team’s scrum.

Howard’s tribute to Clarke

Favorite and two-time National Player of the Year SEC Women’s Basketball Player of the Year Rhyne howard paid tribute to the late British male basketball player Terrence Clarke during the Friday festivities. Howard wore a pair of custom Nike shoes with a photo of Clarke on the left shoe and his number five jersey, with angel wings, on the right shoe. A similar pair was later introduced to members of the Clarke family.

Cheerleaders shine

The Kentucky cheerleaders, 24-time national champions, put on a dazzling routine on Friday night. The Acrobatic Cats were almost flawless in their five-minute routine that will serve as a warm-up for the Universal Cheer Association’s national competition in January.

Dance team joined by a surprise guest

The UK Dance Team’s hip-hop routine showed off the skills that led the Cats to a national runner-up last season. At the end, the team was joined by Bailey Munoz, winner of the 2019 edition of “So You Think You Can Dance”. It was an electric end to a great night.

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