So I have largely stayed away from saying much ab..."/>
So I have largely stayed away from saying much ab..."/>

Kentucky's Sandy Bell, Defender of the Faith


by Jared Quillen

So I have largely stayed away from saying much about the whole Eric Bledsoe sitchiation (I spelled situation wrong because it’s funnier that way) because really, I just don’t get into that kind of crap. It’s mostly gossip stuff and who really knows who is right about what happened when and who did what. That said, I do believe it was Dick Pitino because well, it’s just more fun that way. But for the most part I don’t get much into this stuff for the same reason I don’t read People. Yes I can read gossip about where Lindsey Lohan threw up but, “Frankly my dear, I don’t give a damn.” That said I have kept myself abreast (ha ha breast) because such issues can affect Kentucky’s record books.

At first I was a little concerned, but then I had an epiphany. We here at Kentucky have nothing to worry about because even though we have a coach that many consider to be the cheatenest coach ever, we also have Sandy Bell. The picture above is not Sandy Bell. But I imagine that’s how she looks. Ok that’s not true because I have met and spoken with her on a couple of occasions, but wouldn’t it be a lot more fun if she did look like that. Anyway Sandy Bell is the University of Kentucky’s compliance officer and she is not to be messed with. Let me give you an example.

Last Fall while everyone was running around trying to get autographs of Kentucky basketball players at the Big Blue Madness Campout, Sandy Bell was playing the part of “Autograph Nazi” making sure that everyone understood that autographs of UK players are not to be sold as that could affect their eligibility. Stupid rule yes, but a rule nonetheless. How a player is supposed to control what someone does with his autograph I have no idea, but the NCAA seems to think they can and so it is. I took the opportunity to speak for a few minutes with Miss Bell who mentioned that the NCAA is watching Kentucky closer than they ever have because these players are “a lot better” than previous classes.

Sandy has a mild and stern sense of humor if you can imagine what I mean by that. She is very capable in her position and she protects the University from vacated wins, and loss of scholarships. As Mitch Barnhart put it a few days ago in reference to Eric Bledsoe’s eligibility, “Sandy Bell in our compliance office does a marvelous job….She’s really good at what she does. We went through every review at our level, at the NCAA level on Eric’s academics, and they were comfortable with it. We’re comfortable with it.” That’s a much stronger vote of confidence in Sando than he ever gave to the Tubster or Big Willy Clyde.

So I guess my point is simply that we can all calm down a little bit. Sandy Bell is on top of it and I am confident that as long as she is sitting in the big chair in Kentucky’s compliance office we will be just fine, no matter how many former John Calipari players the NCAA decides to retroactively declare ineligible. So for that I award Sandy Bell the title of “Defender of the Faith.” King Henry the VIII was once given this title by the Catholic Church. He later apostatized and got divorced against the Pope’s wishes, but y’all should know, Hank VIII was no Sandy Bell.

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