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(Photo by Andy Lyons/Getty Images)

Amid a flurry of whistles, the Kentucky Wildcats defeated the Louisville Cardinals 69-62 in front of 24,387.

The first half opened with scrappy play on both ends and it didn’t go away for the full 20 minutes. We saw 28 fouls called on both sides, and rather poor shooting from the floor all-around. The Cats held a 15-point lead at one point, but saw the Cards close the half on a 17-5 run to cut the deficit to three. The story of the first half was Michael Kidd-Gilchrist who shot 4-9, 2-2 from behind the arc, and had 16 points. Coming off the bench for Louisville was Russ Smith who went 5-9 from the floor with 13 points. He was the spearhead in the late charge back by the Cardinals. Louisville’s zone was making it very difficult for the Cats to get in the paint for easy points, but these ref’s weren’t shy to blow the whistle and the Cats kept themselves in it, going 17-23 at the free throw line.

The second half picked up right where we left off, more disjointed play which resulted in the officials calling an excruciatingly tight game. Whistles were rampant and it really disrupted the flow of the game on both sides for both teams. All-in-all it was an ugly game, but the Cats managed to score the most points. A huge factor in the game was Kentucky’s ability to convert from the free throw line, where they finished with an astonishing 74%.

MKG, MVP. Good lord. He logged 39 minutes, stayed out of foul trouble, scored 24 points, knocked down a pair of three’s, collected 19 boards and sank eight free throws. Could he have played a better game? He is an absolute monster and no doubt was the player of the game.

— Anthony Davis was no slouch and really bounced back from a rather quiet first half. He finished with 18 points and six blocks. And, as a 60% free throw shooter naturally would, made 12 of 13 free throws. He was clutch down the stretch to seal the deal.

— Clark Kellog just fouled out.

Many were anticipating the return of Terrence Jones to dominant form. Not so, today. He played 30 minutes and managed only 2 points on 1-of-9 shooting. His biggest contribution, however, was on the glass where he collected 11 rebounds. He seems to be on the way to his normal self, but still struggling with the aggression to the rim.

— Doron Lamb, where were you? Zero three pointers?

Even on a terrible shooting day the Cats can score enough to win. Kentucky hit 30% from the field and 18% from three-point. If you told me that before the game I say there’s no way the Cats win. But they did. That’s a pretty nice thing to relish in going forward.

Marquis Teague regressed a bit from his increasing performance over the last several games; only four points, with four turnovers and five assists. However, with his counterpart Peyton Siva playing so poorly it may have balanced out.

–Peyton Siva needs to shoot more. He was 2-13 from the floor for the Cards. Thanks for that effort!

Twany Beckham logged two big minutes. His moment of glory came late in the first half during the big Cardinal run. He assisted Kyle Witjer with a little jumper, which was a big bucket to stymie the Cardinal run.

— The spread closed with Kentucky as a 9.5-point favorite. Obviously the seven point victory means the Cats failed to cover again, but Russ Smith’s garbage three at the buzzer was the difference. I feel the pain of those who lost money because of that shot.

— The Cats trailed for a whole 43 seconds in this one. After Darius Miller nailed a three with 19:17 in the first half they never looked back.

— Today’s attendance ranks sixth all-time on the Rupp Arena attendance records, just eleven people shy of the North Carolina crowd on December 3

— And finally, there’s this.


h/t to @johnny_pat for the pic.

Enjoy this win, Big Blue Nation and Happy New Year!

Article written by Stuart Hammer

B.S. Broadcast Journalism from the University of Kentucky. @StuartHammerKSR

56 Comments for CATS WIN! CATS WIN!

  1. Wall2Cousins
    4:09 pm December 31, 2011 Permalink

    THATS A FOUL…(pic)

  2. Dane Brammage
    4:12 pm December 31, 2011 Permalink

    First thought…: PlayuhRefBroDusky

  3. schwing
    4:13 pm December 31, 2011 Permalink


    4:16 pm December 31, 2011 Permalink


  5. bmt22033
    4:17 pm December 31, 2011 Permalink

    What’s this nonsense about Cal lecturing BBN about caring too much about the UL game? I saw Matt reference it on Twitter but haven’t seen any more details. And how about Pitino refusing take the podium for the postgame press conference but instead speaking to limited media out in the hallway? Seriously? How childish can he get?!?

    4:18 pm December 31, 2011 Permalink

    The talk about the spread annoys me. The last thing a college team should be cognizant of is the boneheads losing money betting on their games.

  7. Wall2Cousins
    4:18 pm December 31, 2011 Permalink

    5. where can i find the post game interview?

  8. bmt22033
    4:20 pm December 31, 2011 Permalink

    @7 – Anthony Wireman has some of Pitino’s quotes (from out in the hallway, apparently) posted over @

  9. Bigcat4453
    4:20 pm December 31, 2011 Permalink

    Interesting photo… =-)

  10. Wall2Cousins
    4:21 pm December 31, 2011 Permalink

    8 thanks you!

  11. Catsantonio
    4:21 pm December 31, 2011 Permalink

    6. This isn’t for the team to read, it’s for the fans….relax. Anyone can find the spread on a game in about 15 seconds….pun intended.

  12. Carl
    4:22 pm December 31, 2011 Permalink

    Worst officiated game I have seen in a long time. Gerald Budreaux and the NCAA owe it to these kids to get competent officials. Rather it’s incompentence or personal bias by the officials, these kids work too hard to have an adult ‘professional’ do such a poor job. I don’t know which was worse..buckles pulling davis out of bounds or smith tackling Lamb at the end. Both were right in front of the officials and both times UL ended up with the ball.
    But hey!! We won, smoke on that Tony Greene !

  13. Roy G Biv
    4:27 pm December 31, 2011 Permalink

    C A T S

    4:29 pm December 31, 2011 Permalink

    Is it me or are the officials getting out of control? Regs for the IU game were TERRIBLE….refs vs. UofL = TERRIBLE!!!! We need refs to keep out of games as much as possible….not control and hold teams back!!!!

    4:30 pm December 31, 2011 Permalink

    Regs Refs…whatever….

    I HATE REFS!!!!

  16. Bigcat4453
    4:31 pm December 31, 2011 Permalink

    I noticed those two plays as well, #12. There’s no way Davis could stay in bounds while being pulled out. OH WELL!!! Still goes in the WIN column!

  17. Bigcat4453
    4:32 pm December 31, 2011 Permalink

    Nice stat, Matt.. Didn’t know RP’s only wins against UK was when Billy Clyde was the coach!

  18. lexslamman
    4:32 pm December 31, 2011 Permalink

    I need to stop going to the raftards. There are threads over there dissing almost every UK player – started by people who call themselves UK fans.

    It was a tough game for a couple of our most reliable and talented players, but we still pulled out a win. If you are really a fan of a team, you should try concentrating on the positive.

  19. It's Loserville, not louisville
    4:35 pm December 31, 2011 Permalink

    1) Loserville out hustled us BIGTIME today. As much as I despise Coach Fifteeno, he sure gets 100% from his players.

    2) Teague couldn’t play dead in a Western.

    3) Gilly and Davis are MEN amongst boys.

    4) Jones is out of his league at UK. Coach Cal can’t get 100% from anyone except Davis and Gilly, therefore Jones is a waste of space. Either give 100% or go home.

    5) Miller is feminine.

    6) The refs sucked.

    7) We need an “offensive coordinator.” We beat teams by using our size and athleticism. Just imagine how bad we would beat teams if we had a great X and O coach. But that’s the problem with Cal. He can get the elite players, but he isn’t a great X and O guy. But any other coach at UK can coach, but can’t get that type of talent. It’s a catch 22.

    GO BLUE!!!! And Go Home Loserville.

  20. Bigcat4453
    4:35 pm December 31, 2011 Permalink

    We should’ve known with the big Least refs that it would be an ugly game.. I wasn’t surprised.

  21. Bigcat4453
    4:37 pm December 31, 2011 Permalink

    #19 you don’t outrebound a team by 21 and get outhustled as you say… Rebounds are a hustle stat.

  22. Big Daddy
    4:45 pm December 31, 2011 Permalink

    Refs stunk but it helped today since we hit our free throws. If they allow Loserville to reach and grab we’re in trouble. So tight officiating helped.

  23. Tampa Amy
    4:45 pm December 31, 2011 Permalink

    Coach Cal’s site has a bunch of photos from the game, and it includes a good one of the one here:

  24. GoCats2
    4:52 pm December 31, 2011 Permalink

    Happy Blue Year! I was at the game and I am still hearing whistles in my head. The flow of the game was crushed by the Refs. Davis and Gilchrist are absolutely amazing. Is there any possibility of Gilchrist staying another year? I think his jumpshot will be enough to keep him here another year.

  25. crazycatfan
    4:53 pm December 31, 2011 Permalink

    Doron Lamb may not have hit threes, but he sure came through on his free throws!!! Nice job!!!

  26. ebell55
    5:01 pm December 31, 2011 Permalink

    Girls play zone for 40 mins! Where are the pictures of Jayz and Drake? If they were in the building that would be big time!!!

  27. Twatty Beckham
    5:09 pm December 31, 2011 Permalink

    Way too much Bromance from the brothas.

  28. Katdaddy
    5:11 pm December 31, 2011 Permalink

    I hate bust your bubble #25 but if the draft was tomorrow MKG would be top five easy! It was a ugly game today,but so glad the cats pulled it out! HAPPY NEW YEAR BBN!

  29. Looking For 8
    5:18 pm December 31, 2011 Permalink

    Who was the Y at the game?

    5:19 pm December 31, 2011 Permalink

    First, I didn’t think that moment was a hands to the chin moment for a man, yet, in the picture, you will see two guys next to each other doing that very response, lol. Second, #19 is clearly a U of Loser fan, get over it boss, you lost, you are the third best team in the state. And I really don’t understand supposed men and sports fans being all in a tizzy over freaking Jay Z. Yeah, it is cool he was there, but Matt and some of you folks going on and on about pictures…GAy!!!!!

  31. gcat4496
    5:24 pm December 31, 2011 Permalink

    Looks like Muhammad caught the action today.

  32. gcat4496
    5:26 pm December 31, 2011 Permalink

    Muhammad caught the action!

  33. Bubba Earl
    5:34 pm December 31, 2011 Permalink

    T- Jones might as well stay another year, his head is not in it. Draft stock is disentegrating at a rapid pace ever since Pooley left. Pitino coaches against us like he has stockpiled hatchet men, they could have easily called twice the amount of fouls against da ville for their dirty play!!

  34. kyleuk21
    5:44 pm December 31, 2011 Permalink

    what’s with all the complaining about the officiating? there were some ticky-tack ones called, but for the most part there was a TON of hacking going on. the dirty birds fouled the sh*t out of uk every time they drove to the basket. therefore, fouls were called. a ton of fouls doesn’t necessarily equate to bad officiating. looked to me like there were a bunch of hard fouls on contested shots today. if they didn’t call all of the fouls then everyone would be complaining about that too.

  35. Rupperee
    5:55 pm December 31, 2011 Permalink

    @30. That was MOH recipient Dakota Meyer from Adair County.

  36. Shining
    5:56 pm December 31, 2011 Permalink

    We were lucky to win today. Thankfully most of the free throws were falling in. Otherwise, we would have lost. We’ll get there by March, no doubt. Got a team with heart.

  37. Shaqfu
    5:57 pm December 31, 2011 Permalink

    Cal should have taken CJ Leslie over Jones. Jones has no excuse. Kobe Bryant has finger bent permanently from years of play and he’s not crying.

  38. Stan
    5:58 pm December 31, 2011 Permalink

    I am becoming more concerned about jones after each game. I hope he gets whatever is wrong fixed, a lot of rebounds today, but still looked out of place.

  39. Terry
    6:03 pm December 31, 2011 Permalink

    Funny how now the refs were bad both ways only being said because BBN knows they benefited from this. Bottom line Uk did win. But championship team has a ways to go

  40. Shaqfu
    6:10 pm December 31, 2011 Permalink

    Wiltjer reminds me of Brian Evans who played at Indiana. Soft as a baby’s bottom.

  41. Film School
    6:12 pm December 31, 2011 Permalink

    #38 and #41, keep your negative crap out of here. CJ Leslie. Really?

  42. gcat4496
    6:16 pm December 31, 2011 Permalink

    #37. UL was lucky to only lose by 7. Fact is we had 21 TOs, shot 24% from the field, missed a ton of dunks and layups and still had control of this game except for about a 6 min stretch when it was up in the air. We had way too much talent for them.

  43. Bradclay
    6:17 pm December 31, 2011 Permalink

    I wish Teague would be more team-oriented. hope the coaches can instill that in him. He certainly can’t win it all in March by himself.

  44. Kit Carson Scouts
    6:21 pm December 31, 2011 Permalink

    You who rip these UK players are pathetic.

  45. nolablue
    6:26 pm December 31, 2011 Permalink

    Seth Davis is a PUKE graduate. Whaddaya ‘spect?

    6:39 pm December 31, 2011 Permalink

    Don’t like one-and-done’s? They will beat scrubs everytime!

  47. slim
    7:01 pm December 31, 2011 Permalink

    he was reaching for a shank from the ref’s pocket to use on MKG

  48. good fella
    7:37 pm December 31, 2011 Permalink

    Funny haha or funny queer

  49. Where's the Love?
    8:00 pm December 31, 2011 Permalink

    2, 1, 4, 3.

  50. Spectacle
    8:19 pm December 31, 2011 Permalink

    Was it me or was jones going to the rim like a lamb he must of been rejected 6 times. He was going up weak.

  51. BPsycho
    9:11 pm December 31, 2011 Permalink

    “I feel the pain of those who lost money because of that shot.”

    Really.. do u ****** really…. Well that’s good to know.

  52. Catsfando
    9:58 pm December 31, 2011 Permalink

    You folks that are being so hard on Jones need to gut him some slack. I have been critical of him in the past for not hustling, not trying, bad attitude, but none of that was present today.
    The guy hustled his butt off the whole time he was in the game. No displays of attitude,no laziness,just getting in there and mixing it up. He had trouble shooting because he had trouble holding onto the ball, probably due to his injury, and had to shoot with both hands. This made him slower getting his shot off resulting in several block, not to mention the constant hacking and slapping by UL.

  53. go big blue
    10:14 pm December 31, 2011 Permalink

    so louisville will do anything to win even flirt with the refs

  54. Tom
    10:43 pm December 31, 2011 Permalink

    Louisvilles defense was tough. That’s really all they have. They succeeded in keeping us from large runs and really any open shots. What I noticed is we got every loose ball. To win and shoot that percentage is impressive. Louisville is pretty good if u play their game. We did and still won.

  55. bluegrassjimmy
    8:46 pm January 1, 2012 Permalink

    Hey ref, I know Rickie took care of you but can I? Nice bunn’s!