The SEC is predominately a conference that puts more focus on football, with the exception of Kentucky. With Missouri entering the conference; Missouri becomes another school that shares our passion for basketball. The Kansas City Star wrote an article recently on the impact Missouri is going to have in the conference and the similarities it finds itself in with Kentucky replacing Kansas as their biggest rival with their move to the SEC. The similarities between Kentucky and Kansas basketball are plentiful and Missouri has taken notice.
Adolph Rupp got his start under KU coach Phog Allen. Rupp took his team to play KU numerous times towards the end of his career. Coach Calipari was once a low level assistant at Kansas. Both include the letter U and K. Both share blue blood. Both schools were found in 1865. And of course our most recent tie is taking down Kansas to bring home number 8.
The Kansas City Star takes note on just how passionate the BBN fan base is and uses Matt and KSR as an accurate description of how faithful and loyal Kentucky fans are to our basketball program.
“Kentucky has always been a looked-down-upon state, with jokes about hillbillies and rednecks,” Jones says.
Kentucky basketball has the power to change that perception, he says, to give Kentuckians a reason to puff out their chests. And among his audience, and communities throughout the state, Jones says there’s a genuine interest in the Missouri basketball program.
“There’s a belief that Missouri, upon entry, could be the second-most passionate basketball school in the conference,” Jones says.
Missouri is likely to become one of Kentucky’s biggest rivals in the coming years, largely due to the passion both schools share for the same sport. Matt said that Kentucky fans want there to be at least one program in the SEC that cares about basketball. Missouri is that program and come February the start of a new and conference changing rivalry is going to begin.