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Cats welcome Bruce and their veteran players back, beat Vols 73-61


lamb-vargas-tennessee

Things seemed to return back to normal Tuesday night.  Bruce Pearl was back on the sideline for Tennessee. Kentucky was back in Rupp Arena.  And, as tends to be the case in those situations, Kentucky handled Tennessee rather easily, winning 73-61.  The Cats were able to cruise thanks to the re-emergence of a trio of veteran players who had been the recipients of Coach Cal’s ire on the return from Gainesville.  DeAndre Liggins heeded his coach’s advice to be more aggressive and scored 19 points on 5-6 shooting (7-8 from the line) to go with 5 rebounds, 3 assists and 5 steals.  Josh Harrellson found his way back into form, posting 16 points and 6 rebounds while staying out of foul trouble.  Even Darius Miller, who finished 1-7 from the field, contributed on the glass (6 boards) and attacked the basket when his shots weren’t falling.  Sure, there were lapses and things were far from perfect.  But, the Cats handled a talented Tennessee team on an emotional high and did it in a way they’ve been hoping to do all season.  That’s cause for celebration.

More in just a few…

Article written by Thomas Beisner

96 responses to “Cats welcome Bruce and their veteran players back, beat Vols 73-61”

  1. bleedblue

    Welcome back to the SEC Brucie!

  2. yitbos

    Man…the upperclassmen stepped uptonight. Congrats to both Deandre and Jorts!

  3. Vegas

    1st… (plus points ha!)

  4. Nassau65

    take that, arnge bittches.

  5. Sawyer

    think they’ll let us play all of our tourny games in rupp this year?

  6. STEVE!

    Glad Pearl was back tonight. We’re 8-4 against him and his orange jacket, including 5 out of the last 6.

  7. Andy Frain

    Get us the scoop about what went on behind the UT bench as soon as you can please.

  8. btmonroe

    Great game Deandre. He was the MAN tonight. Tough nosed all night!

  9. Manbearpig

    Best game we have had since probably Louisville

  10. Gman

    NOTHING SUX LIKE the BIG ORANGE

  11. payno

    so lets say we lose 3 more and finsih 9-7 in the SEC and go on to get to the championship game in the SEC. Where are we seeded? I say 4 seed.

  12. Alan Cutler's Fart

    Someone needs to make a gif image of Jorts banging his chest. My girlfriend got so worked up she punched me in the face. I’d be willing to have that happen if Jorts plays like that all the time.

  13. Goode

    Maconvol sighting in 1,000,000…999,999…999,998…999,997…

  14. Frank Drebin

    Great game and effort tonight by the Cats. Now, its time for that hell hole that is Vandy.

  15. Bleed Blue

    I’m going to be the first to say it but Vargas is definitely improving as the season goes on. Hopefully next year he can give us some quality minutes off of the bench.

  16. Not Not Jerry T.

    Cal should have called more Time Outs.

  17. Pearl is gay

    Jorts and Liggins played great games! Congrats to them!

  18. Waitin' on 8

    So brother, tell me…what are ya gonna do when the power of Jorts runs wild on you?

  19. Jimmy Dykes

    Did you know there’s a nail on the court? You’ve gotta drive it to the nail and shoot free throws behind it…I’m an idiot

  20. Petee thameltoe

    In my mind there was no doubt that we were going to win tonight. As it has been all year, the road game will not be so pretty. Hope i am wrong.

  21. tipton sucks

    Anyone have John Wall with the Y?

  22. Kywildcat

    How did Dykes continue to talk with Pearls di*k in his mouth all night? Great win. We look better when Jones passes.

  23. Bluecalizone

    Great outside shooting really set the tone. Great game for DeAndre, aggresive all night long. He will play a bigger role in the offense going forward, no doubt. Cal knows it has to happen, and it will be a point of emphasis. He will take the role that Darius should have taken. Maybe it will elevate Miller’s game as well. Great win.

  24. front page of espn.com

    t jones is looking real pretty on the front page there haha

  25. Old Henry Man

    Cats beat TN, John Wahl does the “Y”, great night

  26. macon_volfan

    #13-close

    Good game by the Cats. Offensive rebounding hurt the Vols chances. The game in March with Allan Houston should be fun. G’nite all!

    #2-Yitbos!

  27. Bluecalizone

    ,,,,and by the way, Dykes makes my ass hurt just listening to him. You got to build a wall, guard your yard, drive the nail, and play “Mother N Law Defense”. Don’t know if I can take another game with him calling.

  28. Monty

    We do look good when jones passes but he looked scary lost in offense tonight.

  29. UKRon

    Just saw we shot 15 more free throws than UT. So, does that mean UT got hosed by the refs or does that only apply when we shoot less free throws?

  30. reasonreigns

    This is what true cat fans are all about. Rejoicing that we beat a mediocre SEC team at home and still thinking we are gonna get a 4 seed. For real…you are so dumb.

  31. zcats

    Vargas improving? Good lord he was absolutely awful. He did look good when he took the rebound and fell out of bounds holding the ball.

  32. yitbos

    29…no it just means that UT can’t play without fouling

  33. gokycats33

    19- At least we didn’t hear Dykes talking about “guard your yard” all night. Instead we have to hear about the “nail” all night! I learned that in 5th grade!

  34. bleedblue

    30)Debby Downer alert.

  35. Eggs Wilhoite

    is there a call in show?

  36. reasonreigns

    We dominate the boards and Liggins/Harrelson played over their head. I see at LEAST 3 more losses and the tournament is going to be very unpredictable. Could lose our first game or win it…no telling and that’s what makes me nervous.

  37. Jack

    Nice game Cats! I’m a UK bball fan and UT football fan so I hate these games. Tennessee really doesn’t seem to care the past month or so from watching them. Hopefully this buried them. For us being every team’s Super Bowl, it certainly didn’t seem like it from UT tonight. As unmotivated as I’ve ever seen a team come into Rupp.

  38. reasonreigns

    34) no a realist. This team is gonna get a 5 at best and could be a 8/9 if bounces don’t go our way

  39. thundercats

    21) Some guy found a pic a video of John wall in the other post

  40. brody

    Iloved we was beating up on t.harris,he should have came to uk,also liggins on scotty H good match up with D.A coming out with big game.

  41. reasonreigns

    22 don’t really know what you are trying to communicate but no real reason to use that imagery. Talk with intelligence

  42. Vegas

    34) Since there is no way that we are going to be a 4 seed, but very likely a 5, could you tell me how the games will play out? Or do you just sit in on Selection Sunday??

  43. fatty

    If we let everybody play on offense. Get everybody envoled. everybody plays harder. When jones and Knight try to take over we look terrible. IF you are not envolved on offense sometimes you wondern why play defense. IF it was me jones plays better when he has to work for his points.

  44. Ky Stuck in Tenn

    I think Bruce has pictures of Dykes as much as he sucks up to UT!! Glad to see the upper class play like leaders. Hopefully this game is first of building to a second place finish in the East

  45. Salty Bartender

    WE could have called LIggins number a few more times he was red hot good win CATS!!!

  46. Sheniquia

    Player Grade Notes

    -Liggins A+ VERY aggressive on both ends of the floor. Needs to play like that EVERY night.
    -Jorts B Played better than he has been playing lately. Needs to hustle more EVERY night.
    -Knight B- Foul trouble plagued him, but he was his usual CONSISTENT self. Great game.
    -Lamb B- Great when wide open, but needs to attack more and needs to lockdown on Defense.
    -Miller B- Good effort by Darius, but could be more AGGRESSIVE!!! Please Darius, get mad.
    -Vargas B- Looked MUCH more aggressive for the 27 seconds he got. I wish Cal would play him more.
    -Hood B- Nice form on the 3 point miss. Needs more minutes. Wake up CAL!
    -Poole N/A Poor kid will not see the floor rest of the year. I’d transfer if I were him.
    -Polson N/A Another game, another warm seat on the bench. I wish Cal would let him play.

    -Coach Cal B The kids looked ready. But why give Poole and Hood and Polson and Vargas scholarships if he’s not going to use them??? I know they’re rough around the edges, but Poole could be the diamond in the rough we need. He’s ate up with athleticism and we could use his speed.

  47. Sheniquia

    I forgot Jones:) LOL.

    Jones gets a B- also. He passed the ball tonight, which made me smile. But he didn’t try and create his shot. Harris shut him down in that aspect.

  48. Common Sense

    #38) I really, really hate you.

  49. ruppcrazy

    37)It makes you nervous that the tournament is unpredictable? It’s always unpredictable.

    We are rejoicing because we played very well in a game that we had to win against a rival that was amped up and ready to play us. This was a great performance by the Cats. It’s one they can build on. I’m not saying they will, but they can.

  50. blueblue

    #15
    I’m sorry, but I don’t think Vargas will be around next season. We have four recruits coming in so we need four scholarships. We’ve got one open scholly this year and one graduating senior. Poloson will go back to walk-on statis. I’m hoping we don’t lose anybody to the NBA. That would leave us one scholly short. And that’s assuming we don’t pick up any more recruits. I wouldn’t be surprised if Cal adds one more. All this adds up to mean, Vargas has very little chance of retaining his scholarship, in my opinion.

  51. GboroCat

    Is Matt on the radio tonight?

  52. Guard the Yard

    That should keep a few from jumping off the bandwagon…

  53. hood 4 real

    21 – the john wall video was at http://www.kentuckysportsonline.com

  54. yitbos

    Being a UK basketball fan and a UT football fan is not possible. That’s like being an ohio state football fan and a michigan basketball fan.

  55. brody

    why cant we just get behind our coach and support what he is doing…..some people are never happy.

  56. Common Sense

    #51) I love to dream too, but I don’t see TJones coming back. He would be sharing minutes with Gilchrist & Davis, he’s a top pick in the draft…nope, just don’t see it. Knight & Lamb are definite possibilities though.

  57. Turd Whacker

    Kentucky is 17-6 overall right now and 4 of those six losses were by only 2 points each game!! We could easily be 21-2 right now, but those losses will only make us tougher come March. Last year’s UK team didn’t lose much therefore they didn’t respond well when down. I think this team will still lose a couple more games (@ Vandy) and (@ Tennessee) but they will be DANGEROUS in the SEC and NCAA Tourney.

  58. pullthetrigger

    37…ur life sux and the least I could do is lend u my gun…

  59. Jack

    I get the best of both worlds. I don’t have to cheer for Sweaty Bruce or cheer for a team that has lost 26 times in a row to a rival. Perfect situation. 😛

  60. uk22

    eat sh*T you CHEAP SHOT VOLS! it wouldnt be a game unless you throw a blow or two. TO LEGIT! TO LEGIT TO QUIT!!HEY HEY!

  61. pullthetrigger

    38…u too

  62. MCHAMMER

    what did yall think of my haircut? i like to lose in fashion.

  63. Unforgettables

    Is the call on show on tonight??

  64. blueblue

    #57
    Earlier in the season, I would have most definately agreed that Tjones was gone. Now, I’m not so sure. Is he really ready?? I know he’s a lottery pick this year (assuming no NBA lockout), but I think he would benefit from another season. He could be the #1 pick, if he stays another season.

  65. Wow

    44) Involved not envolved! Lol

  66. fatty

    if jones doesnt realize he has to pass instead of shoot. i hope he leaves. he is the key this year but it is a different role than being the man. he has to dominate defense and the boards before we can be great.57

  67. TSlone08

    Great game and got an autograph from a legend, Mr. Kenny “Sky” Walker!

  68. Catfan123

    #51 last I checked we will have plenty of scholarships available…we have 10 scholarship players right now…losing harrelson gives us 9, and reducing polson to walk-on leaves us with 8…meaning we have 5 scholarships to give even if we don’t lose lamb, knight, and jones. I would be happy to keep 2 out of the 3 but not sure if we could keep all.

  69. cats11

    39) No, you’re a debbie downer. Save the loss talk for when we lose. We kicked UT’s ass. I’m a realist.

  70. Sheriff Buford T. Justice

    65. He is a top 10 pick based on sheer talent and potential alone. I really don’t think he is ready for the league though, he can only go to the left and now that everyone knows it things have gotten a lot tougher for him. That being said, I still think he jumps after this year. Knight and Lamb come back

  71. feels good to say

    EAT Sh*T Tennessee once again!!

  72. bleedblue

    43) That’s not the point. I’m celebrating a victory over the Vols and there are still people writing negative comments. I never said Kentucky would be a 4 seed, but I would like to enjoy this victory without complaining like some people on here.

  73. roger

    We have ten players on roster this year. One will graduate. One other will go back to walk on status. This means if everyone else comes back we have eight returning. We have four coming in and may add a shooting guard. That makes thirteen, which is the scholarship limit. I think I am right about this. If not feel free to correvt me.

  74. Scott

    Is there a link for the post game show?

  75. UK22

    Lets take one game at at time and celebrate the win folks. We are allowed to celebrate, just because its not a NC doesnt mean we cant be happy for beating the cheap shot vols!

  76. elstie01

    51. There’s no other way to say this so I’m just going to have to sound like a dick. You’re an idiot. At the very least Jones is gone. He is not ready and that is fine to say, and true, but NBA gets kids based on potential and in that regard, he is gone. Just go ahead and take him off your line up. Plus there’s a good chance, let’s say a best (for UK’s sake) it’s 70-30 that either Lamb or Knight go…the 30 being their chances of going. 30 is a pretty high percentage considering it’s the middle of the SEC season and that’s low-balling it by probably 20 percent. It’s realistically 50-50 that one of those two goes. So you have a scholarship to give, rather than being short one.I don’t mean to be an asshole, but people on here need to wisen up. As far as seeding for NCAA goes…we could literally be as good as a 3 or as bad as outside looking in come Selection Sunday. This team is bipolar. And that type of play isn’t even game to game, it comes in 5 minute waves. I’m happy we won…but let’s not get carried away. We could just as easily only win 3 more games the rest of the season. Just being realistic.

  77. Doctor Dong

    Rocky Top is a cesspool, Way to go Cats loved the effort tonight. Anyone think John Wall looked sort of sad tonight?

  78. elstie01

    ***Should have censored myself…sorry to the kiddies! I’d be surprised if that post last 10 minutes!

  79. Costanza

    Ba-humbug

  80. jtow12

    The game is being replayed on ESPNU RIGHT NOW if any of you want to watch it again!!

  81. It

    Where is all the criticism of Cal and the guys we usually get in the comments. Here I will give it a shot. I thought Cal was in over his head tonight against a very honest coach. Clearly Cal got lucky with his one and dones because he is a terrible in game coach. Obviously Cal offered the players a cash bonus if they won tonight. Cal accidentally called time outs a few times tonight. If Poole and Hood would have started we would have won by 50.
    There, now I feel better. It’s really too bad we won because I learn so much from the geniuses who come on here and critique our losses. Oh well, maybe next game.

  82. soggyUKgrad

    #51…D1 bball programs are allotted 13 “schollys”

  83. TobiasSucks

    That’s what I’m talking about!
    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=4P75fAN9Jjc

  84. TobiasSucks

    Liggins is the man!

  85. terrencejonesrighthand

    if liggins doesnt get SEC defensive player of the year…something is wrong

  86. Sit Down Dale!

    I love the optimism but those of you wishing for these kids to return to school just aren’t thinking. Knight and Jones will both jump to the league and Lamb will if he blows up late in the season ala Bledsoe. There is simply NO reason to come back if you will be a first rounder. You don’t have to be a 4.0 student to add up one years salary plus one less year till free agency. If my kid is looking at losing five million over a short career or risk an injury…. It’s a no-brainer. Knight and Jones – gone. Lamb… not nearly as likely but will if possible.

  87. stewie

    lets put this win behind us and look forward to a more quality win at Vandy on Saturday since some people fail to realize that beating UT is a quality win. FYI(They beat Pitt @Pitt and Nova on a nuetral court) They are a legit contender. We just played like we have played in the UL and Notre Dame game. we wanted to make a statement and I think those early SEC losses will prove to be so behind us because CAL knows the reason to our success. It is our upperclassmen, not our freshmen.

    GO CATS!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!111

  88. stewie

    hey #87 your retarded! Sure they are NBA caliber but i really dont see all three of them leaving. Jones is a stud but his weakness has been exposed and he will be sitting the bench in the NBA until he develops his right hand. Knight still does not know how to handle contact and a tough defensive assigment. Lamb is the only one I see as a valueable asset in the NBA currently. He is a Ray allen prototype and teams will eat it up. Lamb is gone for sure!

    Jones will stay unless Cal pushes him out
    Knight will stay because he is so close to his degree he will stay another year to achieve it. He is not complete PG.

    PLEASE keep your subpar JIMMY DYKES comments to yourself.

    GO CATS that is the way we take care of business. Short bench who cares!

  89. bigbluefan

    How about we all just celebrate the win against TN and start looking towards the Vandy game? One day at a time, folks.

  90. UK22

    -77 we get it your a realist. but..STFU you f@g!! realist=douche

  91. Paducah

    This team will never be anything but a mediocre SEC team until they find somebody to play instead of Miller. It’s hard to play 4 against 5 but as long as Darius Miller is on the floor that’s what we got. He may be a nice guy etc, but holding up his share is beyond him.

  92. Derekforuk

    All re freshman has made a agreement to each other to stick around to next season. Btw T. Jones has money and isn’t in a hurry neither is knight or lamb. So far I think Poole fills the same way. We only will have to say goodbye to Enes Kanter.

  93. Derekforuk

    Feels* I’m drunk

  94. bluesince66

    Man I wish I had this crystal ball you guys are using to look into the future. I could really make some money with it. Did someone just compare Lamb to Ray Allen? All I can say is I hope they all come back next year, because we’ll be awsome if they do. If they don’t we’ll just be great. Great win last night hope it carries over to Saturday.

  95. billy

    95 I will compare Lamb to Allen. What is his shooting percentage now? Somewhere around 50%? It that good enough to compare with Allen. And by the way he is just out of highschool. He never panics like 99.9% of freshmen do. His basketball IQ is high high high.
    Lamb is so much more consistant than Bledsoe that there is no comparison and Bledsoe is making THE MONEY.
    By the way where is the great three point shooter Lofton these days?

  96. Rupert Ergin XI

    38 – Go away. You are no UK fan if you support the Vols in another sport. You are simply a bandwagon idiot.