Big Blue Madness will be held Oct. 15 in Rupp Arena
LEXINGTON – September 27, 2021
Tickets for Big Blue Madness Presented by Papa John’s will be distributed exclusively online at Ticketmaster.com and through the Ticketmaster app starting at 8 p.m. ET on Friday, Oct. 1.
Tickets to Big Blue Madness will be free again this year.
Big Blue Madness, the annual tipoff to the Kentucky men’s and women’s basketball seasons, will take place Oct. 15 in Rupp Arena at 7 p.m.
All patrons require a ticket for Big Blue Madness, regardless of age. Online orders will have a minimal service fee attached, and there will be a limit of four tickets per household. All duplicate orders will automatically be canceled. Due to high demand, UK Athletics cannot guarantee that all fans will receive tickets.
A limited number of tickets will be held for UK students, and information will be posted online at UKStudentTix.com once it is finalized. With limited quantities available, students may wish to consider ordering through the public distribution on Friday.
While continuing to monitor the latest health and safety guidelines from local and national authorities, UK Athletics plans to operate venues at full capacity this season, including at Big Blue Madness.
Regardless of vaccination status, all guests, staff and vendors will be required to wear a mask while visiting Rupp Arena. Fans will not be required to show proof of vaccination to enter Rupp Arena, but face coverings – covering the nose and mouth – are required for all fans as they watch the game from their assigned seat and enter, exit and move around Rupp Arena. Children 2 and younger will not be required to wear a mask. If spectators are unable to wear masks, they are encouraged not to attend games in person for the sake of their health and the health of others.
Big Blue Madness Presented by Papa John’s will feature introductions of both the men’s and women’s basketball teams, practice drills, videos and more. This will be the 16th time Madness has been held in Rupp Arena. Last year’s event took place in Memorial Coliseum as a TV-only event for fans due to the COVID-19 pandemic.
SEC Network will televise Big Blue Madness live for fans unable to attend in person.
For fans attending Big Blue Madness and all 2021-22 events at Rupp Arena this season, all items are subject to search due to security reasons and the Southeastern Conference clear bag policy is in place. Backpacks and large bags are prohibited. Guests may enter Rupp Arena with one clear bag no larger than 12” x 6” x 12” plus a small clutch that does not exceed 4.5” x 6.5”. A clear bag shall be clear from top-to-bottom and a 2’ trim/border is generally acceptable. To expedite entry into Rupp Arena, fans are encouraged not to a bring bag to sporting events at Rupp Arena.
The men will enter the 2020-21 season as a Final Four contender with one of the nation’s most experienced teams in the country. UK’s 2021-22 roster currently features a sixth-year graduate, a fifth-year graduate, a redshirt junior, six juniors, a redshirt sophomore, two sophomores, and three highly touted four- and five-star freshmen.
John Calipari’s squad will return 42.1% of its minutes, 41.9% of its scoring, 39.0% of the rebounds, 42.4% of the assists and 60.6% of the 3-pointers from a season ago. For comparison, the only two Calipari-coached Kentucky teams that returned more minutes and more points (in terms of percentages) than the 2021-22 team is slated to return were the 2011-12 national championship squad and the 2014-15 Final Four team that started the season 38-0.
Adding the Wildcats’ four transfers to the equation, Kentucky’s current 2021-22 roster includes 13,385 minutes, 5,203 points, 1,917 rebounds, 1,132 assists and 543 total 3-pointers in college basketball production.
It was a successful first season for the Kentucky women’s basketball program under head coach Kyra Elzy, who led Kentucky to a top 20 listing in the Associated Press Top 25 and USA Today/Coaches Top 25 all season long. Elzy became the first UK women’s basketball head coach to lead his or her team to the NCAA Tournament in their first season at the helm.
During the 2020-21 season, Kentucky defeated five ranked opponents, including back-to-back against top-15 teams for the first time since 2013. The two wins led Elzy to be named the espnW National Coach of the Week and the United States Basketball Writers Association tabbed UK its first-ever team of the week. UK was one of 10 teams in the nation to have four wins against top-25 NCAA NET teams entering the tournament.
The Wildcats will return a large chunk of their production from the 2020-21 season, including consensus first-team All-America honoree Rhyne Howard. Howard averaged 20.7 points per game last season, adding 7.3 rebounds per game and a team-best 91 assists. Kentucky’s third, fourth and fifth-leading scorers also return in Dre’una Edwards, Robyn Benton and Blair Green. Point guard Jazmine Massengill, who missed the first half of the season due to NCAA transfer rules after finishing second on the team in assists per game. In all, UK returns 70% of its scoring, 3-pointers made and assists, while it brings back 64% of its rebounding and 60% of its steals.