Yes it is definitely tied to CM 4.3. If Sports didn't make 4.3 Jeepers would have had many more issues since pretty much everyone revolves around Sports. When he makes AOKP, he compiles it from the AOKP repos on git and uses some of Sport's work since he fixes a lot of stuff as he releases it.
I don't know much about compiling from source, but people who do that are very pro! lol