The Numbers Don't Lie

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Middle school students get real-life math lessons on ‘Jorts Day’

By John Herndon

If DeAndre Liggins’ 3-point attempt in the final seconds had found the net on Saturday, Anderson County Middle School students might have had a lesson on the probability of the shot going down and the Kentucky Wildcats winning a national championship.


While Liggins’ attempt was short and Connecticut moved on to Monday’s NCAA championship game, teachers and students at the school were in big Final Four spirit during Friday’s “Jorts Day” for seventh-graders.

Math and science teachers used the occasion of the Wildcats’ first trip to the Final Four since 1998 and the popularity of Wildcat Josh Harrellson as a fun way to teach students about their subjects.
“They are having a big time with it,” said ACMS teacher Bryan Hyatt, who was sporting a pair of jean shorts, or jorts, as well.

Harrellson has become a bit of a folk hero and is known for wearing jean shorts on his recruiting visit to UK. “I think a lot of it is because he is such a hard worker,” Hyatt said.

The tears Harrellson shed after UK’s 56-55 loss Saturday were more of what endeared him to the Big Blue Nation. Many students and teachers at the middle school proudly wore their “jorts” on the final day before spring break.

“Math, especially at the middle school level, is not the easiest thing to make fun for the kids. Any opportunity we get to show the kids the real life side of math, and make it fun, is an opportunity I can’t pass up,” said teacher Leslie Edmondson.

Unfortunately for Wildcat fans, math really did play a major role in the Wildcats going home one game too early.

Hitting 33.9 percent of their shots and a third of their free throws, the probability of the Wildcats winning was greatly diminished.