OWENSBORO, KY (5/10/12) - A swarm of fans waited in line Wednesday at Owensboro’s Wildcat Wearhouse in anticipation of an appearance by University of Kentucky’s basketball standout Anthony Davis. Davis, whose list of records and awards for his one and only collegiate season with the Wildcats has already become the stuff of legend, has also been selected as a finalist for the 2012 USA Olympic Roster.
The line of Big Blue Faithful wrapped around the strip mall that is home to the UK themed fan store. Roger Woodford of Owensboro arrived at Wildcat Wearhouse at 6:45 AM, better than 11 hours ahead of Davis’ anticipated arrival and was first in line for autographs. Previously, Woodford and his sons had also been first in line for UK Guard Daron Lamb’s signing session. On that day, as if fate had rewarded him for his commitment, he won an autograph package that included signed prints and a championship hat.
“I’m here at least two or three times a week,” said Woodford. “They’ve got the best selection here. They’re always getting in new shirts and hats and things.”
Second in line was Pat Helton of Owensboro who arrived at 11:30 to get an autograph for her nephew Aaron Hoover who lives in Florida.
“I’ll be on a plane at 7:00 AM taking it to him,” said Helton. “He’s 17, and hopefully in two years he will be playing football for UK.” Despite being a Cats fan herself, Hoover said she wouldn’t have endured the long wait if it weren’t for Aaron. In a phone call, she jokingly asked Aaron what an autograph from Davis would be worth to him. He responded in a whisper, “I’ve got $150, but don’t tell Dad."
Outside, fans remained upbeat and full of anticipation despite Davis being tardy for the event by almost an hour. Bub Mattingly of Whitesville, KY buzzed in and out of his place in line, socializing and showing off his drawn-in unibrow and high-top fade, tributes to Davis and incoming freshman, Nerlens Noel, respectively. Noel, number 1 player in ESPN 100’s 2012 recruiting class, will try to fill the void left by Davis as he moves on to the next level.
Little Layla Driggers of Owensboro endured the wait with her grandparents Darla Heifner and Ernie Shouse. When SurfKY News caught up with Layla and company near the back of the line, she was taking a break in the shade. She quickly popped up to show off her homemade sign that read “Bow to the Brow” on one side and “I Love U Davis” on the other.
“She’s a huge UK fan,” said Shouse. “And she loves Davis.”
Davis charged $55 for one autograph and $100 for two. Portions of that money will go to the Kentucky Children’s Hospital. For fans who wanted a posed picture with the projected #1 draft pick and potential Olympian, an additional $20 fee was charged, 100% of which will be donated to the hospital. Davis will appear at Wildcat Wearhouse in Madisonville, KY today. To read the full article on his Madisonville visit, click here.
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