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Eamonn Brennan: Kentucky will be fine


In his weekly roundup of college basketball news, ESPN analyst (and Beisner’s best friend) Eamonn Brennan says that despite Saturday’s loss, the Cats will be just fine:

Kentucky will be fine. If you examined the game closely, there were plenty of reasons to be concerned with UK’s performance. Its young players seemed genuinely rattled by IU’s hyped-up home environment. Forward Anthony Davis committed a series of silly fouls and missed most of the game in return. Forward Terrence Jones mentally checked out. Guard Marquis Teague was shaky for much of the first half. All of these are valid mini-criticisms, but if Big Blue fans are feeling slightly freaked out, they shouldn’t be. This Wildcats team is still very, very talented, and right now its mistakes — dumb fouls, lack of focus, turnovers, broken set plays — are of the youthful variety.

Few teams in the country would have played a composed, controlled game in Saturday’s atmosphere, and when you consider that Kentucky was able to come back and nearly win the game on a day in which Davis rarely played and Jones was never his typical self, well, that’s impressive in its own right. The Cats may lose a few games on the road. They may make a few dumb mistakes here and there. But don’t worry too much, UK fans. This team will be just fine.

Brennan also chimed in on the hot topic of Saturday’s game–the disappearance of Terrence Jones. He includes Cal’s postgame comments on the matter, in which Coach downplayed Jones’ poor performance, chalking it to a “bad day” and insisting that even when Jones doesn’t show up, the Cats can still find a way to win. However, Brennan says Kentucky fans’ concern is understandable:

Kentucky is hoping for production from Jones, sure, but it also needs leadership; he is surely the most important veteran on a team largely comprised of freshmen. On Saturday, he delivered neither.

The good news? Jones’s bad games have been rare. In fact, he’s never been this bad. So it’s fair to assume he will rebound (literally and metaphorically), and very soon, and Kentucky fans will have their concerns assuaged in short order. But you can’t blame them for being just a little bit worried. It’s one thing to play poorly. Apathy is another matter entirely.

Terrence, there’s a huge game on New Year’s Eve with your name on it. If you haven’t already, circle it on that “Season Never Ends” calendar, will ya?

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.

13 Comments for Eamonn Brennan: Kentucky will be fine

  1. CalifCatFan
    4:38 pm December 12, 2011 Permalink

    Off subject, but did anyone else noticed that Austin Peay beat Tennessee? Macon Vol Fan, you’ve got some explaining to do.

  2. Maxwell
    4:52 pm December 12, 2011 Permalink

    TJ can more than make up for this with a solid game against U of Hell. I’m not worried either.

  3. Chicago
    4:59 pm December 12, 2011 Permalink

    I know we kind of dog on Eamonn Brennan and his hipster complexity, but he always seems to write positive articles on the Cats. I’ll take it.

  4. bluristhurr
    5:05 pm December 12, 2011 Permalink

    Why would anybody be worried about a team who lost a buzzer beater? Not like we lost by 20 points we lost by 2 and Indiana hit their 3’s. I think it was a good lost if there was ever such one. It hurt to see that buzzer beater but what doesn’t kill you will make you stronger and that was the case in Bloomington.

  5. Calipari'sInYourEar
    5:24 pm December 12, 2011 Permalink

    Eamonn’s opinion has the value of a dried turd.

    Our team got served by a bunch of 3 & 4 star recruits.

    Kentucky will only be fine if they can tighten their @$$holes back up after getting gaped by Little Orphan Annie in pinstripes.

    Too many cupcakes on the schedule = lack of focus and overinflated 18 year olds egos

  6. UKGrad83
    5:34 pm December 12, 2011 Permalink

    I have to agree 100%. Saturday’s loss isn’t the end of the world. Remember these are still young men only a year or two out of high school. TJ had a bad game and whether it was due to a personal issue, health, or just a “bad day”, he’ll be back to form soon enough. Coach Calipari is a motivator and will get the best out of the them. I hate the loss but not this team. There’s no one else I’d rather have representing UK than that group of men. There may be a few more losses along the way but come March, this team is going to be a monster and they will be bringing back number 8.

    6:00 pm December 12, 2011 Permalink

    5- shut up. isnt U of Jail having finals this week? go study. troll.

  8. FatCat
    6:23 pm December 12, 2011 Permalink

    We just need to accept the fact that UK is going to lose early season road games as long as our teams are so young every year. By the end of the year, this won’t even be the same team. Last year UK struggled away from Rupp early on and then beat Ohio State and UNC in the tourney. In the grand scheme, this loss means nothing.

  9. Calipari'sInYourEar
    6:43 pm December 12, 2011 Permalink

    #7 – CATASTROPHE – The personnel on Indiana’s bench shouldn’t be within 20 points of UK’s at the end of a game.

    We all know it. The only reason we’re not harping on it is because it hurts to see our guys get consistently out hearted and out hustled in a RIVAL game. Those 2 attributes still mean something to some of us.

    “Sometimes you have a bad game…” Only if you work like a professional can you say that afterward. If you don’t, then you’re giving an excuse for mediocrity.

  10. RidgeRunner
    6:49 pm December 12, 2011 Permalink

    Reality over bullcrap…

    We play there…upset or we win by under 10.
    IU plays here…we win by 25
    Neutral…we win by 15

    It’s not earth science.

  11. Duh
    6:55 pm December 12, 2011 Permalink

    In other news the Earth is round.

  12. Blue-Haze
    6:57 pm December 12, 2011 Permalink

    This loss in this atmosphere and to go to the last shot says huge things for this team , we had to think they were going to lose a few road games early on. Coach Cal knows he has a special team and when they come down the stretch he will have them in the lead. This game was beneficial to UK and time will prove it to have a positive effect on this young team. If we meet again this year you will probably be glad we lost this one!

  13. RidgeRunner
    6:59 pm December 12, 2011 Permalink

    I just hate this over analyzing on why we lost and they won. Good Lord.