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The SEC Tourney’s News & Views


sectournamentlogo

Well, it’s official.  The Men’s basketball regular season is over.  It’s tourney time!  March Madness is upon us!  Earlier tonight, the full SEC bracket was released.  The first round of the tournament begins Wednesday, and will conclude with the Championship game on Sunday at 3:15 PM.  Despite a disappointing loss today, the Cats will cling to a #2 seed heading into Atlanta.  This year will mark the 56th SEC tournament for Men’s basketball, as Kentucky looks to win their 28th conference championship.  Kentucky begins tournament play on Friday, March 14th, at 7:00 PM.  The Cats will play the winner of LSU and Alabama.

Without further delay, let’s have a look at the full SEC bracket.

via secdigitalnetwork.com

via secdigitalnetwork.com

 

Now on to today’s news:

Photo from SEC Facebook

Photo from SEC Facebook

– Matthew Mitchell and the UK Hoops team defeated South Carolina in the semi-finals of the Women’s SEC Tournament.  It was a huge victory for our women’s team, as they upset 5th ranked South Carolina with a of score 68-58.  Kentucky will play in the championship game tomorrow afternoon against Tennessee.  Today’s win could also be a huge improvement for their seeding in the NCAA tournament.  A championship tomorrow may very well solidify a #3 seed for UK Hoops.

Photo © Kim Klement

Photo © Kim Klement

–  Calipari is going back to Dakari Johnson.  After today’s 84-65 loss to the Gators, Calipari was quick to make some changes in the lineup.  During his post-game interview with Tom Leach, Calipari acknowledged the strong play from Johnson as of late.  “Dakari needs to be starting, and that’s what we’ll do,” Calipari said. “He’s the one kid who has fun with it.”

-In a post-game meeting with members of the press, Julius Randle gave his opinion on what needed to be done to correct the mess in which Kentucky currently finds themselves. “We’ve got to get this thing going,” said Randle. “We don’t know what we’ve got to do, but we’ve got to get it going.

-Former Kentucky sharpshooter, Doron Lamb, finally figured out what time Kentucky played and witnessed what happened to the team that he used to play for. He took to Twitter after the game to let his concerns be heard by the world.

doron twitter

-John Calipari wasn’t timid in stating what he thought might have cost Kentucky a chance at a comeback today. During his post-game presser, Cal let it fly.  “We did fight and gave ourselves a chance to win on the road. I thought we fought and did good stuff, but when it came down to a 6-8 point game, we took two God awful shots. Not just bad shots, but throws. They were throws. Those two shots were taken with 30 seconds on the clock. Throws. Absolute, no chance… nothing! You can’t win playing that way.” Coach Cal said he told the team during a timeout that they needed to be more patient and take better shots. Obviously, that message fell upon deaf ears.

The remainder of his press conference can be found below and is courtesy of KYWildcatsTV.

-During his post game press conference, Billy Donovan was asked about Kentucky and their season-long struggles. His answers were surprisingly positive (polite) regarding a team that just lost by double digits.  “I think Kentucky’s as talented as anybody in the country,” said Donovan. “They’ve got all the pieces, but there’s always a process.” The Gator head man further elaborated. “When a group of really talented players come into college, sometimes the expectations placed on them are unfair.”

-While the basketball result wasn’t what any of us wanted today, the baseball squad dispatched Ball State this afternoon by a final score of 24-1. “We did a great job at the plate,” Kentucky head coach Gary Henderson said. “We scored a bunch of runs without an error. We had good concentration and didn’t try to do too much. We also did a great job of swinging at strikes and looking at balls. We took advantage when we were in advantage counts.” KYWildcatsTV has your highlights.

Article written by Kory Henry

"We will kick, pass, and run, til the battle is won!" Bleeding blue since 1990. @KoryHenryKSR

50 responses to “The SEC Tourney’s News & Views”

  1. NKY_UK_Fan

    UK ranks 266th in the country in assists per game and has what seems like little to no basketball IQ. A team cannot overcome that no matter how much talent they have. That being said, I, as an alum, still believe in and love the program. This season was just another miss. Hopefully, next year has more players with the two key attributes I stated.

    1. mashburnfan1

      Still no answer on what all this talent and skill is I keep hearing. This group of selfish individuals can’t shoot [even free throws}, can’t dribble, can’t pass and can’t guard anyone who moves. The most basic fundamentals of basketball, this highly talented and skilled group has no clue. Now I figure because in scrimmage our offense never moves so players are not used to guarding others that do move. Lazy-we make a 3 or a free throw and the other team scores a layup in less than 5 seconds. Was this the first game Cal has watched, we have taken those same god awful shots all year. Also nice job to figure out who should be starting after game 30 something. Do not deserve a tourney bid, have done nothing to earn one.

    2. Blue

      While Cal is a great recruiter as far as bringing in the #1 recruiting class every year, I don’t he spends much time actually watching these players play while they are in high school. He figures if they are the #1 point guard or #1 power forward,ect.,they MUST be good.

  2. NKY_UK_Fan

    An addition, some pure shooters would help too.

  3. Brian

    I wish we were the 3 seed much easier path.

  4. gcat4496@yahoo.com

    It wasn’t two bad shots that cost this game. It was Florida manhandling the Cats for 35 minutes. It was no contest. Florida sliced up the Cats D like swiss cheese. Within a few seconds of the shot clock they had multiple easy baskets. Open 3s, dunks, layups, jump shots. Meanwhile, when the Cats had the ball it took 15 seconds to bring the ball up and to finally begin initiating the offense. Then the Harrisons would hold the ball passing it back and forth until finally with 5 seconds left on the shot clock a wild out of control shot was thrown up. When Randle got the ball a triple team would come leaving 3 guys wide open but he couldn’t pass out of it. Maybe Tyler Ulis will be the answer next year.

  5. Ralph

    Just gonna keep it basic here, no personal stuff. From a basketball point of view, we have zero mid-range game. No one can hit a basic 8 to 12 foot jumper with any consistency. How can you run dribble drive with nothing to keep the defense honest. With no threat to score on perimeter it is easy to control drive and hope offense. As a defender, if you can hit a 10 footer, I have to come out and play you tighter. If you can’t, then I give you space, get help when you drive and make you alter your shot. With not much of a three point threat and mediocre defense, its hard for a team in this scenario to have any success! Mid range offense and free throws and we are in!

  6. Obvious

    Kentucky fans need to stop looking at 5 star as the same each year (or top 10) when analyzing recruits.

    Some years the ability of kids coming out of high school is better than others. Also, some years we just miss by focusing on the wrong guys. It’s clear the point guard that Cal needs must be of a Rose/Wall and possibly Knight calibur to make the Dribble Drive Offense successful.

    When we miss and get an Andrew Harrison or have to fill a gap with a Ryan Harrow the offense (and the other players in it) suffer as a consequence. The PG position is CRITICAL for it to flourish.

    The level of “ability, consistency, heart, team chemistry potential with others” while at UK in comparison should be made clear (rank 0-10):

    10 — Anthony Davis
    9 — Demarcus Cousins, Enes Kanter, Michael Kidd Gilchrist, John Wall
    8 — Patrick Patterson, Julius Randle, Eric Bledsoe, Brandon Knight, Nerlens Noel
    7 — Doron Lamb, Terrence Jones, James Young
    6 — Darius Miller, Marquis Teague, DeAndre Liggins, Josh Harrellson, Alex Poythress, Archie Goodwin, Aaron Harrison, Andrew Harrison
    5 — Darnell Dodson, Kyle Wiltjer, Julius Mays, Jarrod Polson, Willie Cauley-Stein, Dakari Johnson, Dominique Hawkins
    4 — Marcus Lee, Jon Hood, Derek Willis, Ryan Harrow
    3
    2 — Daniel Orton
    1 — Eloy Vargas
    0

    When you take this comparison ranking into consideration you can easily see why some ‘groups’ of top 10 players are clearly more capable of surviving a season together than others.

    2009-2010 Squad: Wall(9), Cousins(9), Patterson(8), Bledsoe(8), Miller(6), Liggins(6), Harrellson(6)
    Avg Rank of Rotation – Top 7 (By Playing Time): 7.42
    Result: 35-3 (14-2 SEC) Elite Eight (1 horrendous night from the perimeter vs WV prevented a National Title)
    Final Rank: Coaches #5, AP #2

    2010-2011 Squad: Knight(8), Lamb(7), Jones(7), Harrellson(6), Miller(6), Liggins(6)
    Avg Rank of Rotation – Top 6 (By Playing Time): 6.66
    Result: 29—9 (10—6 SEC) Final Four
    Final Rank: Coaches #3, AP #11

    2011-2012 Squad: Davis(10), MKG(9), Lamb(7), Jones(7), Teague(6), Miller(6), Wiltjer(5)
    Avg Rank of Rotation – Top 7 (By Playing Time): 7.5
    Result: 38-2 (16-0 SEC) — National Title
    Final Rank: Coaches #1, AP #1

    2012-2013 Squad: Noel(8), Goodwin(6), Poythress(6), Wiltjer(5), Mays(5), Harrow(4), Polson(5)
    Avg Rank of Rotation – Top 7 (By Playing Time): 5.5
    Result: 21—12 (12—6 SEC) NIT
    Final Rank: Not Ranked (Coaches, AP)

    2013-2014 Squad: Randle(8), Young(7), Harrison(6), Harrison(6), Poythress(6), Johnson(5), Polson(5), Cauley-Stein(5)
    Avg Rank of Rotation – Top 8 (By Playing Time): 6
    Result: 22-9 (12-6 SEC) — Projected 22-11 (2nd Round Loss)
    Current Rank: Coaches #24, AP #25 (After this final end of season weekend they will drop out of both polls)

    1. Polymathematic

      Your ability to analyze recruits in hindsight is impeccable.

    2. Bunny

      Wow! Impressive post…

    3. SeoulCat

      BTI?

    4. Blue

      Obviously

  7. Davefromdagap

    Well here’s what Ive learned. Im a Cal supporter, always have been. But unless he has at least some change in philosophy after this year, its not going to be a happy ending. Two glaring things jumped out at me today. One, we NEVER run any type if pick and roll, or anything other than depending on a driver to get into the paint, forcing a big to come up, creating space for a lob, which id happening less and less often. The dribble drive has petered out. Secondly and even morevfrustrating, Randall gets doubled or triple teamed EVERYTIME he gets the ball, time after time. We look like wr have no idea its coming. Its a gift, and we turn it into a dipocle. How or why we dont have set respinses for the unevitable is mind blowing to me. Our offense makes the defense lookblike they gave Six players on the floir. Im as frustrated as Ive been in forever.

    1. Rei

      Don’t drink and surf, kids.

    2. SC big blue fan

      Proofreader over here please!!!

  8. UKBlue

    After two years of this I’m honestly tired of talking about it, debating it & watching it. Love the Cats, but this is just getting too painful to watch. I’m tired of my head hurting from running into the wall of reality. As far as the kids; leave stay I honestly don’t care. If you are going to continue to play in this manner then please leave, I will even help you pack. Sorry if your ego can’t handle it or it might hurt your feelings: none of you are that good & the people that told you that you were great since middle school, yea they lied to you. As far Cal: Cal said during BBM that he learned from last year & it wouldn’t happen again: well we may not being going to the NIT but this feels a whole lot like Deja Vu. I wonder what Cal learned? Love Cal but I’m over all the Cal’isms & him trying to tell me what he thinks I want to hear. As for the things Cal doesn’t like, I don’t care if Cal hates things like zone defense or certain offensive plays, if it works then do it !! Man that championship in 2012 is coming out one hell of a price. I see LSU getting us back !

    1. stevieb

      A lot of the “Calisms” or excuses that people keep referring to are more for the players than the fans. Do you really expect him to lay it all out and be honest about the players when the season isn’t over and these guys are still playing for him?? He has to keep a positive outlook and continue to try to motivate them! I’m sure one day, we will know more about what all has happened but for now, he needs to focus on the players, not the fans.

    2. binarysolo

      I’m with ya, UKBlue. I used to stick up for Cal (even at a dinner party once, when some Dookie talked trash about our coach), but after hearing the same excuses I’m done. Especially with him saying today he would rather do the right thing for a player even if it meant hurting him or the program.

      Stevieb, the Calisms are also meant for the future players. He’s saying “don’t worry about these losses, you come to me and I’ll do anything I can to get you in the NBA even it that means losing games.” He does need to focus on the players, I agree, but that focus should be trying to get them better in practice and not coddling them when speaking to the media.

      I mean, other than reassuring future prospects who want a coach to coddle them, what good will it do for him to say “I like this team” when we’re bounced by an 11 seed in the first round of the NCAA tournament?

  9. mashburnfan1

    RECORD VS. TEAMS RANKED IN THE CBSSPORTS.COM RPI
    NO. 1-25 NO. 26-50 NO. 51-100 NO. 101-200 NO. 201+
    1-3 1-1 10-3 7-1 3-0
    This is UK, a projected 7 seed.

    NO. 1-25 NO. 26-50 NO. 51-100 NO. 101-200 NO. 201+
    1-4 4-3 4-2 7-0 5-0
    This is an on the fence team in Colorado. No losses from an above 100 team. Many more top 50 wins than we have. How do we deserve a bid.

  10. Bluebloodtoo

    Maybe Billy’s right. Too much to expect from freshman, even if they are all eventually gonna be nba players. I still like these players and for freshman, they’ve played pretty good.

  11. Luther

    Wouldn’t at all be surprised to see LSU knock us out of the tournament in our 1st game…just saying…

  12. Holler Baller

    Win or lose I’m always a wildcat and support the team

    Dakari has heart and will go down as a favorite next year

    Who’s Doran Lamb???

    1. SC big blue fan

      “Who is Doran Lamb?” How about an exe Kentucky Player who could actually shoot well.!!!

    2. Well Actually

      Doran Lamb has never played for UK. Doron Lamb did

    3. Blue

      Somebody needs a pair of 3-googels.

  13. powerlifter

    These Cats better pray that they don’t have to face LSU in their first game or it will be an early exit from the SEC tourney. Could thse cats be NIT bound again with a loss to LSU?

  14. yesterday's wine

    What would the Calisms be if he began only recruiting JUCO players and those occasional guys finishing up military tours who still had college eligibility and some basketball skills? Here are some things we might hear in the press conferences:

    – You have to understand, this team is old, we spend so much time stretching and getting loose at the beginning of practice we don’t have time to implement a zone defense.

    -We have the oldest team in college basketball!And for you basketball benies out there, when players are old they (pause for affect and some guy inevitably shouts our some absurd answer) REPRODUCE
    Cal pounces, yes! And when they reproduce and can’t get baby sitters they bring their toddlers to practice and we spend so much time stopping practice to remove toddlers from the court, we don’t have time to teach a simple pick and role.

    – You have to understand, we have the oldest team in college basketball and sometimes they don’t hear well and cant hear the coaches brilliant strategy. They are just old.

    – Jerry, our players are old, you can relate

    -Our players are old, but for you basketball benies out there they are like (another pause for affect and who the hell can guess what answer he’s looking for, Sometimes it’s completely unrelated to basketball but once again some guy in the back of the room will shout it out. My theory is it’s the same guy and it’s the warm up suit guy from Fleming County. The one who is always in the know and hangs out at gas stations)Yesterday’s Wine! To which Cal responds, YES! And we will get better with time.

    1. binarysolo

      Dunno how anyone could be this hilarious this early on a Daylight Saving Sunday morning, but you did it. “Spending so much time stopping practice to remove toddlers” is freaking brilliant! Definitely needed this laugh after what went down yesterday.

  15. MC

    I don’t care if you have followed UK since the 1950s, have you ever heard a player say when the season was over and before tournament started “I don’t know what we gotta do, but we gotta get this thing going”? I really wish Cal was the recruiter and Tubby or Rick was the coach. Either would bench a kid that said that. Look what Pitino and Tubby are doing this year with so much less talent …supposedly. Thank God the Blue White football game is next month. At least these kids and coach will work hard and not coast.

  16. barn

    ‘look what tubby is doing’? 15-17. i think he’s doing pretty much the same as usual

    1. TorpedoVegas

      Stupid comment. Tubby’s team is pieced together with walk on’s and lower caliber players because Billy G ran off almost everybody on the team last year due to all of his ya know…insanity. Just like at Minnesota, when Tubby gets his players at TT he will be fine. In fact, the only reason little Ricky P has had any level of success thus far at Minnesota is because of the team Tubby was forced to leave behind.

    2. Blue

      Yeah they had to reinforce the ceiling at Minnesota’s arena because of all those championship banners Tubby hung while he was there…..

    3. TorpedoVegas

      That’s cute. So while Tubby was in the sweet sixteen last year, where was Cal? I forget. It’s not just about championships (Tubby and Cal are 1-1 by the way) Tubby was successful with players he was able to recruit to Minnesota. MINNESOTA. Cal recruits the best and look at the result the past two seasons. I’ve said it before, no other coach could do so little with so much.

    4. Blue

      I seldom get into a reply back and forth on here, but I will ask where was Tubby when Cal took UK to a elite eight,final four and National Championship? Just using your own logic here.

    5. Dr. Funke

      So I guess Minnesota fired tubby because he was way too successful there? It was more success then they could handle and they decided to take a step down and go with little rick.

    6. lazy sunday

      So if and when Cal is let go at UK for underachieving, will we say he was a complete bust? It’s no different than what happened with Tubby. Lots of success in the beginning followed by mediocre season after mediocre season. That looks like the current trend wouldn’t you say? Yet all anyone ever talks about is how much of a failure Tubby was. Strange. But yeah, GO CAL!!

    7. Blue

      “Lots of success early”. Define “lots”. Tubby won 1 National Championship…..in his first year.

    8. ???

      Yeah let’s not forget all of those SEC conference titles and regular season championships. The man was just god awful. All of those NIT’s…oh wait.

  17. Hollahollaholla

    LSU? Really? Great…

  18. katdaddy

    I bet Tubby could do better with the kids Cal has had the last two years. There hasn’t been any improvement with these kids the last two years. No player Development what so ever. Because when the player make mistakes Cal sit them for 45sec to a min and they’re right back in the game making same mistakes.

  19. Aja

    Someone has missed the bus because they tried to board a train. I am not sure I have ever seen anything quite like it. Not only are we are not on the same page. We are not reading the same book. We do not even speak the same language. The disconnect is that broad and that profound.

  20. katdaddy

    Cal is full of shit! if you’re still leaning 30 games in your team is doomed. This team sucks and i don’t see them winning another game. Cal is a better talker than he is a coach.The kids don’t know what they’re gonna do because the coach doesn’t have a clue either.

  21. Rise

    You all realize that the team is just messing with us. They will win out the rest of the season and win #9…………..☆Wishful thinking☆

  22. Matt in. Clearwater

    The team has been and will be a bunch of selfish players, just biding time till they go pro n get the $ they think they are entitled to…this group of players can’t play as a team, so they will go down in the first round of the next tournament they play in, sorry to say everybody…c’mon football season…

  23. Dr. Funke

    Oh yes Tubby was such an incredible coach. I remember when tubby got the no. 2 ranked recruiting class in Rondo, Crawford, Bradley, and Morris. Cal could have never developed that group like tubby did because Cal is an inferior coach. I remember Tubby won 3 titles with that team because he is the best at getting the most out of the talent that he had. That’s why he was consistently made final fours at Minnesota.

  24. bung

    We averaged 10 losses in 3 of last 4 seasons… we won’t be winningest program for long
    we can’t or won’t… run the fast break, make assists, or score enough points to be dangerous
    we don’t know… if Hood, Willis, Lee, or Hawk would have helped us

  25. S

    Cal and Obama have a lot in common…. Can’t lead, Lie

  26. Funky Monkey

    Is Marcus Lee or that Willis kid still on the team or did they get cut?

  27. DisciplinePlease

    Did anyone see the exchange between Cal and one of the Harrisons? It happened as one of our guys was preparing to shoot free throws and Cal motioned for Harrison to come over to him. Cal was explaining (again) what they had just discussed in the last timeout. Saying, “…remember what we talked about…” and then motioned where Harrison should be playing. All of a sudden, Cal stopped talking to Harrison and then nudged Coach O and said, “That f***er ain’t even listening.” Appeared as though Harrison just turned and walked away. Now, can you imagine that kid remaining on the floor for even one extra second? Sounds like it’s more than just “freshmen” and more like prima donas who know it all. Willis, Lee, Hood would all love the chance to get instructions while on the floor. Sick of the players and sick of the culture that Cal allows. Tubby refused to change and we all see where that ended: Drain the Tub t-shirts were sold out!

  28. Chaz

    The baseball clip made me smile this morning. I don’t even know who’s on the team, but they’re having a good time. Baseball is maybe the most unpredictable of American sports.