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Calipari frustrated by how Kentucky reverted after big wins

Anyone with eyes can testify that this team looks different than the one that beat North Carolina and Louisville a few weeks ago. After the Cats’ ugly 85-74 win over Texas A&M, John Calipari shared his frustrations about how his players have reverted to bad habits in SEC play.

“We started becoming a team I think out of fear because we had two games that we were like, ‘Oh my gosh, we can’t win either one of these.’ Out of fear I think they [came together] and then we won two and all of a sudden, we [came apart]. That’s my job. If they started separating and I didn’t see it, that’s on me. Obviously, that’s what’s happened.”

If you’ve heard Calipari say it once, you’ve heard him say it a million times; for this team to reach their potential, they have to become empowered and he can’t be the one to do it.

“They’re not empowered yet, let’s just say that. At some point, if this team is going to be what I believe they can be, they can be one of those team, they have to be empowered. That means I shouldn’t even talk about effort and intensity and fight. Shouldn’t even come out of my mouth. Not even once. And there should be times they huddle and talk. Instead of me telling a guy, ‘Why would you break off that play,’ they grab him and say, ‘Why did you do that?'”

One player who stepped up and held his teammates accountable tonight was EJ Montgomery. In addition to scoring four straight points to spark Kentucky in the first half, the freshman big man wasn’t afraid to call out one of brothers in the huddle.

“Today, I like the fact that EJ got after one of the guys and said, Pass the ball man. Why you being selfish? If they have to have it all from me, I don’t want to do it. I don’t have fun doing that. I have fun cheering. But the other side of it is, we’ve gotta win which means I’m going to do whatever I need to do to get these guys over the finish line. Today I was dragging them. Literally dragging. I’m exhausted right now.”

Don’t mistake that as Cal throwing in the towel.

“I told them, I’m not going to stop coaching them. I’m not. I’m going to tell you when you’re doing right. I’m going to tell you when you’re doing wrong. We’ve got to get this thing right.”

Article written by Mrs. Tyler Thompson

No, I will not make you a sandwich, but you can follow me on Twitter @MrsTylerKSR or email me.

16 responses to “Calipari frustrated by how Kentucky reverted after big wins”

  1. Bigblue7982

    Me too.

    1. Ridge Runner

      Add a bunch of us to that list…

  2. binarysolo

    I was working tonight and missed most of the game. Who was Cal referring to when he said “We had some guys that got outworked. Got outworked and think it’s okay.”?

    Looking at the box score is one of the players Reid?

    1. Ridge Runner

      Yes, unfortunately.

    2. makeitstop

      I was on a plane following on line but we got outrebounded by a 3 guard lineup, I’m guessing we stood around and watched. PJ and Reid, their stat line tells u a lot the last 4 games.

  3. dballrb

    The SEC coaches know how/what Cal is coaching. Big differences between playing big name schools once a year(or 2),on a neutral court.Im guessing Cal has a pretty good record for those games since he came to Lexington…Have Mitch go dig up the MAN IN THE BROWN SUIT….One

  4. Wildcats4SaleOrRent

    Anyone else frustrated with the lack of tempo? Seems like Cal makes it a habit every year of slowing it down and not letting his guys just get out there and ball. My advice would be to let them have fun, move the ball up the court and only set up in a half court offense when needed.

    No excuse for struggling tonight at home against A and M.

    1. Murphydogs1

      Amen brother!!!

    2. symphonist41169

      Why didn’t Cal fullcourt press when A&M was making their run at us in the 2nd half? The press gave us a chance to actually win against Alabama after 37 minutes of mediocrity. He should fullcourt press every game until we get up by at least 10 points then dial it back to a 3/4 court. We have the depth to wear out 98% of the NCAA, why doesn’t he take advantage of that?

  5. bwise

    Once again. Thanks for making up for nicks shitty writing.

  6. No more excuses cal

    I think cal has reverted

  7. No more excuses cal

    But who cares we’re playing for June b remember players first

    1. catsarerunnin

      Stoogery will get you nowhere.

  8. UKWildcatNation

    Listening to the post game press conference this is the most irritated and frustrated I have seen Coach Cal after a win in a long time…and rightfully so.

  9. Big johnson

    The worst thing to happen to this team is the Bahamas trip. It set the bar too high, they could only go down from there.

  10. IrishCat

    As the season progresses I see that we are not at our best w/ Reid and PJ in together. EJ does a lot of good things, and Nick’s leash is way too short.