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Kentucky Antisemitism Task Force discusses college campus protests in latest meeting

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Kentucky Antisemitism Task Force discusses college campus protests in latest meeting


LEXINGTON, Ky. (WKYT) – As pro-Palestinian protests pop up across college campuses, including right here at the University of Kentucky, many Jewish students are trying to have their voices heard.

That’s why the Kentucky Antisemitism Task Force met on UK’s campus on Wednesday.

They are confronting reports of antisemitism within universities across the state.

The Anti-Defamation League said there have been six reports of antisemitism across Kentucky’s college campuses.

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The league said four instances have been reported at the University of Louisville and at at least one case has been reported at UK.

“I think sometimes we’re quick to jump to wanting to support students, but we don’t ask them what support looks like or how we should be supportive,” said UK’s Dean of Students, Trisha Clement.

Clement said some of the ways UK is supporting Jewish students is by providing listening sessions and implementing a Religious and Spiritual Life Office for students to turn to.

“We have had conversations with both our Jewish students and our Muslim students, doing listening sessions with them, providing alternative programming if they needed it, and hearing from them what their experience is like both in and out of the classroom,” she said.

It was also announced that a subcommittee on antisemitism education is being developed.

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“Our focus is going to be on antisemitism across the board, K-12, and higher education. People on both sides are going to disagree about policy issues, disagree about what’s going on in the middle east, but we can disagree without being disagreeable,” said task force chair Jonathan Miller.

Miller added those subcommittee members will be selected soon.



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Kentucky

Kentucky Mountain Laurel Festival wraps with Queen Coronation

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Kentucky Mountain Laurel Festival wraps with Queen Coronation


PINEVILLE, Ky. (WYMT) – The 93rd annual Kentucky Mountain Laurel Festival (KMLF) hosted its final day in Pineville with a much-anticipated tradition.

The 2024 Kentucky Mountain Laurel Festival Queen is University of the Cumberlands Whitney Caldwell.

WYMT Mountain News Weekend Edition newscast at 6 p.m. on Saturday

Universities and Colleges throughout the commonwealth sent young women to represent their institutions with the hope they may bring home the flower crown.

“It’s like you’ve got no words but at the same time you’ve got so many things to say,” said Caldwell.

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Caldwell is now a part of the KMLF history which includes many women before her who held the title as well.

“The women I’ve met that have been queens are people that I can look up to and I hope I can continue that tradition to be someone that young girls that I’ve met or already know that they can look up to me and just be a good role model for those sort of people,” said Caldwell.

Governor Andy Beshear was unable to attend the coronation or the luncheon but sent the Secretary of Kentucky Tourism, Arts and Heritage there to represent the Governor.



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‘Several teams’ have former Kentucky guard Reed Sheppard ranked as top prospect in NBA Draft

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‘Several teams’ have former Kentucky guard Reed Sheppard ranked as top prospect in NBA Draft


Two of the top players in the 2024 NBA Draft had a combined six starts for Kentucky last year. Despite their talent, it could be an argument that Reed Sheppard and Rob Dillingham were both underutilized.

Now, both are projected to go in the top-10 of the NBA Draft next month.

While the NBA Combine las week wasn’t as helpful for Dillingham, it was another impressive showing for Reed Sheppard.

Sheppard has seen his name anywhere from No. 1 overall to No. 8 — at the lowest. But. he’s consistently around the 3-5 range. However, following the last week of workouts and the combine, ‘several’ NBA teams have graded Sheppard as their best available player, according to ESPN’s Jonathan Givony.

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“Sheppard measured a little bigger than expected at 6-3 in shoes while testing a 42-inch vertical leap in Chicago. He also looked like the clear-cut best shooter in the draft every time he had a ball in his hands — both at the combine and his pro day in Los Angeles this week,” Givony wrote. “Several teams have said that Sheppard’s statistical profile — with his incredible scoring efficiency (56% FG%, 52% 3P%, 83% FT%) combined with his excellent steal, block and passing metrics — have him ranked as the No. 1 prospect in their draft models, something that surely has caught the attention of analytically inclined front offices, such as the Houston Rockets.”

Sheppard’s resume speaks for itself and his consistency over the last year has been evident. The one thing you can’t teach is his knockdown shooting ability that is extremely lethal. Becuase of that, Givony doesn’t see Sheppard falling outside of the top-5.

“With the premium that NBA teams are increasingly placing on perimeter shooting, it’s hard to see Sheppard dropping below the top 5, with his fit in San Antonio alongside Victor Wembanyama looking especially strong at the Spurs’ No. 4 pick.”

The NBA Draft is set for June 26-27.



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A Kentucky transfer portal target just committed to a rival

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A Kentucky transfer portal target just committed to a rival


Kentucky’s new head basketball coach, Mark Pope, is almost finished with the 2024-25 roster, but he is looking to add one more guard who can score the basketball. 

The goal was to add former North Florida guard Chaz Lanier to the roster after he took a visit to Kentucky, but on Friday, he committed to play for the Wildcat’s biggest SEC rival, Tennessee. 

Tennessee had more minutes to offer Lanier, but this is a massive loss for the Wildcats as he would have been a perfect final addition to this roster, but now Coach Pope will have to keep looking. 

Coach Pope will turn his attention to former BYU guard Jaxson Robinson, who played for the Wildcat’s new coach last season. Robinson is an elite scorer and is currently still in the NBA Draft. If you are a Kentucky fan, you are hoping Robinson pulls his name out of the draft. If he does this, all signs point to the former BYU Courger following his previous head coach to Lexington. 

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Robinson is an elite scorer who would be the perfect final guard addition to this roster. He is a player who has played a lot of college hoops, so he would fit right into what Coach Pope is building. Robinson can shoot, and that is why he would be a perfect fit for this system. 

Missing on Lanier hurts, especially knowing he is going to a rival, but Coach Pope is going to find a piece to finish this roster, and Big Blue Nation needs to hope it is Robinson. 



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