My mom has always been very critical of my dad and I. When it comes to sports, we are what you would call your true pessimists. It’s not all our fault though. Being raised as a Reds and Bengals fan, what have we had to be optimistic about? We are still quite pessimistic when it would come to Kentucky basketball, but luckily we could still find some bits of optimism during even the lowest of times, but after last night… is there anything left to be optimistic about this season?
1. Shai Gilgeous-Alexander continues to impress
Going into the season, Gilgeous-Alexander had possibly the lowest expectations of any member of the recruiting class. In some ways even Jemarl Baker had higher expectations than the Kentucky point guard. He has blown everyone away. It is hard to think where this team would be without Shai. We are all fearing that an NCAA Tournament bid might be in limbo, but if it wasn’t for Shai, this team wouldn’t even have a chance at the tournament.
The best part about him? He is continuing to improve. His improvement is one reason for me to feel optimistic about the remained of the season.
Everyone of Calipari’s successful tournament teams has had a good point guard. Gilgeous-Alexander is looking to fit that mold.
2. In Cal We Trust
If there is one person that can make this team win, it is John Calipari. He has worked miracles with teams before. Did the 2011 and 2014 team show signs making the Final Four? Not really, but Calipari still found a way to get them there. I still have faith in the Kentucky coach. He has not lost in the first round of the NCAA Tournament while at Kentucky. Why should it start this season?
3. This Team can be REALLY good
As we have seen at points this season, when this team is playing well, they can beat anyone in the country. Think back to the Louisville game. The Cats THROTTLED the Cards. Think back to the second half of the West Virginia game. The Cats came back from a double digits to beat a ranked team on the road. Of course, with all of this being said we have still seen this team at its’ worst. The second half of last night’s game was terrible, but it is one to move on from.
Overall, there might not be a lot to be optimistic about, but there is still something. This season is not at a complete loss. There is still an entire month until Selection Sunday. It is a cliche, but the next month of the season is the most important. It is time for the team to stop living in the past. Play your game.
So I ask you… what is YOUR reason to stay optimistic about this team? Let’s try and have NO negative comments about the team, no matter how hard that might be.