Could Coach Mack’s Cards Be The Favorite For Mack’s First UofL vs UofK Match Rivalry Game?

LOUISVILLE, Ky. (WDRB) — Louisville will be favored to beat Kentucky on Dec. 29.

No misfire. I said six of seven power formulas rank the Cardinals ahead of the Wildcats.

Calipari should send a fruit basket to Ken Pomeroy ASAP. Of the seven computer rankings I checked, Pomeroy’s formula was the only one that had Kentucky ranked ahead of Louisville on Thursday.

Even that came with fine print. Over the last 10 days, the script has flipped. Pomeroy’s formula now projects the Cardinals to defeat the Wildcats, 75-74.

I know, these are just computer numbers. They guarantee nothing. Reasonable question:

Why are they more impactful Thursday than they were four, six or eight weeks ago when Kentucky was ranked miles ahead of Louisville? If they weren’t accurate then, why would they be accurate now?

Totally reasonable. But here is a better question: What has changed? You know the list. The Wildcats were run out of Bankers Life Fieldhouse by Duke. The Blue Devils beat Kentucky by 34 but only beat Yale by 33, Hartford by 33 and Army by 22.

Louisville won on Seton Hall’s home court in Newark by five. Kentucky lost to Seton Hall by one in overtime on a neutral court in Manhattan.

Louisville has three wins against Top-75 opponents in Pomeroy’s rankings. Kentucky does not have any.

Kentucky has an issue with turnovers. The Wildcats have lost the ball on more than 20 percent of their possessions, ranking No. 262 in turnover percentage.

Their three-point defense also must improve. Through nine games, opposing teams have made a ridiculous 40 percent of their shots from distance.

Here is a factor the computers are unlikely to quantify: Louisville is no longer coached by a guy who breaks out in a rash and hyperventilates at the idea of trying to defeat Kentucky.

For eight seasons, Calipari took up so much space in Rick Pitino’s psyche that Calipari paid property tax.

The final tally was Calipari 8, Pitino 2, but that scoreboard remains an inadequate way to capture Calipari’s dominance. UK’s average margin of victory during that stretch was close to eight points per game while Louisville defeated Kentucky by three and three.

Remember last Dec. 29?

The primary takeaway from the game the teams played last season in Rupp Arena was Louisville was likely to struggle to make the NCAA Tournament. The 29-point defeat was the largest margin of the 14 games the Cardinals lost in 2017-18.

More than a month into this season, the numbers from the computer power formulas have tilted decisively toward Mack’s 7-3 squad.

The NCAA’s newly created NET formula, which will be used by the Tournament Selection Committee when they select and seed the field in March, ranks Louisville No. 20, 19 spots ahead of Kentucky. Jeff Sagarin’s Predictor formula has Louisville ranked 21st, Kentucky 30th.

Bart Torvik’s formula makes it Louisville No. 26, Kentucky No. 30.

Erik Haslam has Louisville 31st, Kentucky 75th.

Kevin Pauga likes Louisville more than any formula, raking the Cardinals 14th, ahead of Indiana, Auburn, North Carolina and others, while placing Kentucky 73rd.

In the old school Ratings Percentage Index, which the NCAA has dropped but lives on at other web sites, Louisville is No. 16, Kentucky No. 126.

Pomeroy remains the primary holdout for the Wildcats, ranking Kentucky No. 18 with Louisville No. 40.

But, as I noted earlier, even Pomeroy’s numbers have trended toward Mack’s team. Kentucky began the season ranked No. 6. Louisville started the season ranked No. 63.

Kentucky has two games to get it right: in Rupp Arena Saturday when Utah visits and Dec. 22 when the Wildcats play North Carolina in Chicago.

But even if they do, the prediction here is that Louisville, not Kentucky, will be favored when the teams gather at the KFC Yum! Center on Dec. 29.

Meet the Black Barber Making Almost $500K a Year Creating ‘Man Weaves’


Wade Menendez, also known as “Wade the Barber,” has been credited for transforming the hair game as a pioneer of creating “man weaves.” Those who have a balding scalp run to his Maryland-based barbershop called The W Hair Loft, and it’s no surprise that his unique procedure has earned him almost $500,000 in one year!

Menendez, a 35-year old African-American man, has been highly acclaimed as an innovator in the field of hair styling. He developed the cranial prosthesis, most commonly known as a “man weave,” which fills a balding scalp with hair — without the need for a surgery!

With the help of another stylist, Menendez developed a simple procedure to install hair to balding scalp. He glues natural and synthetic hair pieces to the scalp and blends it to the remaining natural hair.

For over 13 years, he has been in the barber field making impressive cuts to his wide range of clientele. In 2011, he opened his first barbershop in Glen Burnie, Maryland where numerous services are offered. And just four years ago, he added creating man weaves into his portfolio.

Aside from being a hairstylist, Menendez also hosts classes where he teaches over 500 hair professionals how to do what he does. Last October, his class gathered stylists and barbers from different areas around the world, including London.

“There’s a big demand for [hair units] in the U.K.,” Steve Diligence, who flew from London to Maryland to learn from Menendez firsthand, told Vice News. “People have seen videos from the states, and they say it’s impossible or magic.”

Hair weaves or extensions have been a lucrative market, especially to Black women. A market research reports that “nearly six out of 10 black consumers wear a wig, weave or extensions, which enables them to switch up their look.”

Menendez has definitely had the advantage because of that market. Last year, he earned more than $400,000 through his business alone. He revealed that he also got a few celebrities among his clients. But he says his achievements aren’t only measured by his profits.

“I’m doing this to help other people – and that’s not just with that confidence but helping other people even make money,” Menendez said. “I’m always here to do whatever I can, and I feel like that’s what I’m called on to do, so I’m operating in my purpose and my destiny.”

Jennifer Lopez Shares Her Secrets to Looking – and Feeling – Great at 49!

How does Jennifer Lopez manage to look so fabulous at 49?

“I sum it all up as trying to live a healthy lifestyle,” Lopez tells PEOPLE in this week’s cover story.

Eschewing strict, bland diets or a rigid workout schedule, the radiant superstar focuses on getting plenty of sleep — at least 7 to 9 hours a night (“10 or 11 hours on a day off”) — and drinking lots of water.

When it comes to breaking a sweat, Lopez dances at her at-home studio and mixes up her workout routine with yoga, circuit training and lifting weights (“I feel like as you get older you lose muscle,” she says).

Jennifer Lopez
Jennifer Lopez
Jennifer Lopez Instagram

And when it comes to eating habits, the Second Act star gives herself permission to indulge or enjoy yummy foods. “I’m not a perfect eater,” she says,  “but if I feel like I’ve been naughty for a few days or if I’m trying to slim down a couple of pounds, I’ll do a protein shake in the morning and one at night.”One of her favorites? A thick healthy shake made from sunflower butter, chocolate protein powder and banana.

Peggy Sirota

Beyond food and fitness, she says one key to having a beautiful outside is nourishing your spiritual self. Lopez meditates regularly and says a daily affirmation to keep herself centered. “I’ll go outside and open up my arms to the universe, to the heavens, to God,” she says.

The results speak for themselves. “I’m just trying to take care for myself,” says the youthful star, who turns 50 next July. “I think I’m hangin’ on!”

For more of PEOPLE’s at-home exclusive interview and shoot, please pick up this week’s issue, on stands Friday.



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