Man, what a day. Let’s wrap up some of the events from a busy Saturday.
-Ever have someone that isn’t into UK basketball offer a perspective that feels way out in left field? That is how I feel about Jeff Goodman’s wrap up of today’s victory over North Carolina. Goodman thinks that if John Wall doesn’t get hurt that Liggins would have been playing (filling the human victory cigar role). Hmmm. Maybe. It seemed to me, though, that a case of Clark Kent started taking over SuperWall a few minutes before halftime. He gave up a few turnovers, missed some shots, and came back to Earth a little. I’m not saying he sucked, just that UNC is too good to have just rolled over for a healthy UK backcourt. I thought Roy Williams did an excellent job with his halftime adjustments and the Tar Heels came out playing more inspired defense and really focused on rebounding. If Wall and Bledsoe aren’t nicked up, we might win by a more comfortable margin, but not by more than 12.
-In his post game press conference, Roy Williams said some very nice things about the Cats. The UNC coach, who was battling a head cold as well as a hurt wing, said that “in the first half, they (UK) really kicked our tails.” He felt that the Tar Heels really “looked and played like an inexperienced team in the first half.” He mentioned that he didn’t think he had ever coached a team where, at halftime, the opponents had 12 fast break points and his team had zero. When asked about John Wall, he said that he felt John “dominated the game” and that it really helped UNC when Wall got hurt. As a side note, and one that makes me think more about the man, Williams also noted that this was the first time he took his team to Rupp where Bill Keightley “wasn’t there to say hello” and that he was missed. Classy move, Coach.
-Wonder why it took so long for John Wall to return to the court? Via John Wall’s post game interviews, they took him to the locker room to administer an IV but had trouble finding a vein. Normal college students that give plasma for beer money can give you tips on such matters, Mr. Wall.
-I didn’t see it elsewhere on the site, but our UKHoops team beat Cincinnati last night to get to 8-0 on the year. Wow. Both UK basketball teams are undefeated. Take that Tennessee. On a related note, did you realize that Tennessee separates its athletic websites based on gender? If you go to utsports.com, it only has men’s teams. You have to go to utladyvols.com to get any info on the women’s teams. It is a real pain in the tuckus when you have to look up stats and schedules.
-Evan Turner, star player for Ohio State, is going to be out 8 weeks after he dunked a ball so hard HE BROKE HIS BACK. Actually, he did one of those hang-parallel-on-the-rim dunks and fell on his back. Still. Yee-ouch! To add insult to injury (literally), he missed the dunk. It goes without saying that we all wish him a speedy recovery and hope all goes well with the rest of his basketball career.
-Elsewhere in the Top 25, a ranked (Guh. #16 ESPN, #17 AP) Gonzaga team was upset at home by unranked Wake Forest. Remember when Mark Few was one of the names bandied about for the UK job? Yeah, I’m glad we went with a different option.
-Louisville lost. Moving on.
-Looks like Alabama is the SEC representative in the National Championship game. When asked for predictions, I really believed that Florida would win rather easily. I based that solely on how each team looked when they played the Wildcats. I thought we had an outside shot at the Tide, but we had no shot at beating the Gators. Obviously, this is a rather flawed evaluation approach. Good thing I didn’t bet on it. Now that the winner has been determined, it is time to root for the SEC. I hope The Crimson Elephants cream whichever Texas team they get to play.
-East Carolina, the team UK beat for it’s third straight bowl victory last season, upset Houston to win the Conference USA Championship for the second straight year. This win also places the ECU team in the Liberty Bowl against the Arkansas Razorbacks. I don’t really have a comment about this except that the mascot for ECU is a pirate and pirates are awesome, matey. Yar.
-Yes, Women’s Volleyball action kicked off tonight and your UK Wildcats swept the 14th ranked Oregon Ducks in what Matt Jones dubbed “The Rich Brooks Bowl.” A number of KSR members were in attendance so I trust one of them will opine about the experience, but we should recognize the awesome job that the Women’s Volleyball team is doing. Their next match is December 11. Nice job, ladies.