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BTI’s Rants and Ramblings: It’s Inexperienced, but is it the MOST Inexperienced?

As Kentucky fans, I think we have become used to having inexperienced teams coming back for basketball season.  Some years, you might have 2 or 3 experienced players coming back, other years maybe just 1.  But, I think it isn’t so much the actual number of players with experience coming back, but the quality of the players.  Last year’s team actually had 6 total guys returning, but only Kyle Wiltjer had any serious experience.  So, just which teams have had the most QUALITY experience in John Calipari’s first 5 seasons?  Well, I broke it down by minutes, points, rebounds, assists, and blocks and then ranked those teams compared to the other 4:

2009-10 (Patterson, Miller, Liggins, Harris, Stevenson, Harrellson, Krebs)
Minutes: 7,113 (1st)
Points: 2,338 (1st)
Rebounds: 1,447 (1st)
Assists: 458 (1st)
Blocks: 310 (1st)

2010-11 (Miller, Liggins, Harrellson, Hood)
Minutes: 3,040 (3rd)
Points: 856 (3rd)
Rebounds: 471 (4th)
Assists: 258 (3rd)
Blocks: 92 (3rd)

2011-12  (Miller, Hood, Lamb, Jones, Vargas, Polson)
Minutes: 5,575 (2nd)
Points: 2,024 (2nd)
Rebounds: 901 (2nd)
Assists: 332 (2nd)
Blocks: 189 (2nd)

2012-13 (Hood, Polson, Beckham, Wiltjer, Malone, Long)
Minutes: 830 (5th)
Points: 260 (5th)
Rebounds: 122 (5th)
Assists: 30 (5th)
Blocks: 19 (5th)

2013-14 (Hood, Polson, Poythress, Cauley-Stein)
Minutes: 2,432 (4th)
Points: 801 (4th)
Rebounds: 501 (3rd)
Assists: 73 (4th)
Blocks: 79 (4th)

The team that this year’s team most closely resembles when it comes to returning production?  The 2010-11 team, which saw it’s troubles during the regular season but brought it all together come March on the way to the Final Four.  And when you look at last year’s numbers, you can see a major reason that team was such a disaster.  So, do you think Kentucky has enough returning production to recreate what was accomplished in 2010-11?  Or even better?

Article written by Bryan the Intern

10 Comments for BTI’s Rants and Ramblings: It’s Inexperienced, but is it the MOST Inexperienced?

  1. Musehobo
    9:15 am July 22, 2013 Permalink

    Without having seen the team play, it’s hard to guess. However, if they accomplish what the 2010 team did, I’d be happy.

    But I must clarify something. No way “returning players” is the most important factor in determining winning. Oh yes it’s important, and it is most definitely a determining factor. But the skill and drive of our freshman (as evidenced the last two years) is also big.

  2. rabble rabble rabble
    9:16 am July 22, 2013 Permalink

    Returning STARTERS is what you need.

  3. rabble rabble rabble
    9:16 am July 22, 2013 Permalink

    and a boat load of talent.

  4. theWilkman
    9:20 am July 22, 2013 Permalink

    1 and 2 hit it right on the head, it’s a mix of the QUALITY of your returning players and motivated freshmen. Arguably this team has 2 returning players with the most upside of any of Cal’s UK teams, WCS and Poythress. Frankly I will be disappointed if they don’t at least match the 2010-11 squad, and surprised if they don’t get #9.

  5. Bret
    9:24 am July 22, 2013 Permalink

    @2 I would agree with you on that, but also believe it should be expanded to the 6th or 7th players off the bench who actually were part of the rotation (aka played more than 3-5 mins a game). That would give you an accurate assessment of players who gained experience. For example, Polson shouldn’t be counted as an experienced member for his sophomore season, but should for his junior season because his minutes increased and he was part of the normal rotation.

  6. BlueDeuce
    10:14 am July 22, 2013 Permalink

    It looks like the 2010/11 team but the talent coming in matches the 2009/10 team. I’d expect a better overall record than the 2010/11 team but not sure I expect better results (Final Four).

    It’s tough to say without seeing them play. Are they as good as they have been billed? Will they grow as a group and become a team? Who emerges as the leader? Are they driven to produce now or only goign through the motions to meet their goal at season end?

    Tough to say but I like the stats…shows just how good 2011/12 was and shines a big light on what happened last year. Talent is huge but it’s more than talent that wins in the end. Is that experience or determination?

  7. Daniel
    10:44 am July 22, 2013 Permalink

    STOOPS or Darius Miller or Montgromey Gentry

  8. Not a vacuum
    10:46 am July 22, 2013 Permalink

    This post and the comments fail to address that we aren’t playing against ourselves. Our own talent and experience are obviously important factors, but don’t forget that most of the traditional powers, as a group, are collectively going to be more experienced and talented then they have been in years. I don’t care so much how this team stacks up against past Cal UK teams, I care about how we stack up against Michigan St., Kansas, UofL, etc. Won’t know til we play the games.

  9. Bunny
    2:59 pm July 22, 2013 Permalink

    Good question and not a bad analysis for a lowly intern…

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    9:58 am July 23, 2013 Permalink

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