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Continuing the Evolution

What struck me most about the Louisville and Indiana games in the tournament is how differently we played than when we met each team during the regular season. In the first meeting with Indiana, we trailed earlier and clawed our way back in to lose at the horn. In the tournament, we held the lead from the start and rode an incredibly efficient offensive performance to victory. When we played Louisville in December, we outrebounded them by 21 and made 32 free throws on our way to a seven point victory. In the tournament, they outrebounded us and we needed a heroic shooting percentage from the field to make up for an abysmal performance from the line.

Now in our third rematch game in the last four, we face a Kansas team that we beat in New York during the first week of the regular season. In that game, the Cats and Jayhawks were tied after the first twenty minutes but we outscored them by ten in the second half to put them away. Part of our first half struggles had to do with the remarkably poor play of Marquis Teague. He turned the ball over six times and only had one point. However, in the second half he poured in eleven points and didn’t turn the ball over once. His improved play helped UK shoot out to a nine point lead by the first TV timeout of the second half and we never looked back from there.

I expect to see more of second half Teague tonight. In addition, I expect a lot more production from our bench than we saw in the first meeting. When we played in Madison Square Garden, Darius Miller only saw 20 minutes of court time and, as Dick Vitale loudly noted over and over again, we barely saw Kyle Wiltjer. While Thomas Robinson insists that Anthony Davis isn’t Superman, I hope he’s able to pull Jeff Withey away from the basket and drive on him. It’s something that Davis didn’t utilize early in the season but his expanded skill set is enough to torch the clumsy footed Withey.

The game in November saw all five starters finish with double digit point totals. If we can get that kind of balance again then it will mean that both Terrence and MKG have their heads on straight. If that’s the case then Robinson is going to have to get his eyes checked because he’ll be seeing Supermen all over the court for UK. If we can reduce the turnovers that plagued us in the first half of the first game while still bringing our patented defensive intensity, then we should be celebrating tonight.

I love this team and this season has been a fantastic ride. No matter what happens tonight, thank you for reading and letting me share this experience with you. It has been truly unforgettable.

Go Cats.

Article written by Matthew Hays

20 Comments for Continuing the Evolution

  1. Anonymous
    10:34 am April 2, 2012 Permalink

    Wooo Cats

  2. BobKYCats
    10:36 am April 2, 2012 Permalink

    Go Cats! We got this!

  3. Don
    10:36 am April 2, 2012 Permalink

    I wish Davis would wear a uperman shirt under his jersey and show it after we win for Robinson!

  4. kentuckyrules
    10:40 am April 2, 2012 Permalink


  5. kentuckyjoe
    10:42 am April 2, 2012 Permalink

    If TJ and MKG are in beast mode it will be a runaway. Which, by the way, is just fine with me.

  6. 5:00Somewhere
    10:50 am April 2, 2012 Permalink

    Can’t wait for it, yet want it to slow down so to savor it…. that’s what she said – GO CAYUTS!

  7. Need some help
    10:54 am April 2, 2012 Permalink

    Sorry guys, I totally realize I’m out of the loop on this one…but what is this “Kate on State” I keep reading about?

  8. Jonah Hex
    10:55 am April 2, 2012 Permalink

    <—– This guy is nervous.

  9. Rockfield,KY
    11:01 am April 2, 2012 Permalink

    I know there are a couple other guys on here living in Winston Salem. Where are yall gonna watch the game at tonight? I need to be around my people.

  10. tom
    11:06 am April 2, 2012 Permalink

    can someone explain the term ‘Kate on State’. I’ve seen it a lot over the last week or so and don’t have a clue to what it means. I’m not into social media culture like many of you. Thanks

  11. tom
    11:06 am April 2, 2012 Permalink

    7. Sorry I didn’t read your post befor submitting mine. I’m glad there is someone else perplexed.

  12. like a bazz
    11:08 am April 2, 2012 Permalink

    espn replaying the uk/florida game right now, that walker kid is fast, flying up and down the court … weird, but it looks like he has a hot dog tucked in his socks

  13. 5:00Somewhere
    11:25 am April 2, 2012 Permalink

    #13 It was a taco

  14. Mike
    11:38 am April 2, 2012 Permalink

    Agree with some of the above…if MKG and TJ keep their heads on straight and are into the game both mentally and physically we should win in the 12-15 point area. MKG will have to stop his charging fouls though.

  15. best1978
    11:46 am April 2, 2012 Permalink

    He doesn’t have to be Superman. He just has to be The Brow!!

  16. Chicago Chris
    12:08 pm April 2, 2012 Permalink

    Speaking of benches – Kansas got only 3 points and two players off its bench against OSU. Kansas is one team which can’t claim to at least be deeper than UK.

  17. for tom
    12:30 pm April 2, 2012 Permalink

    I dont know the whole story but from what I saw, some hot girl named Kate ran naked on State street after one of the tournament wins.

  18. Aaron Craft's Rosacea
    1:45 pm April 2, 2012 Permalink


  19. tom
    2:02 pm April 2, 2012 Permalink

    18. Thanks! Hope she was as nice as the tourney win! lol