Here are some more notes from Cal’s pregame teleconference this morning:
— Cal called his team a “mid-November team” that “will be right 30% of the time and wrong 70% of the time.” It’s November 12th, so that makes a lot of sense.
— If Harrow doesn’t travel to Atlanta (AKA if he doesn’t practice today), Cal has “all the confidence in the world” in Jarrod Polson, who looked spectacular on Friday night. That comes as no surprise to Cal: “I watch him go against some of the best players in the country every day.”
— Cal also said that he’s prepared to play Jon Hood and Twany Beckham (who’s coming back from a back injury) as well if needed.
— Why did Cal schedule two huge games this early in the season? “I need to learn about my team right away because we’re so young. It’s either we win or we learn.”
— Kentucky did not respond well to Maryland’s size, namely Alex Len. It won’t get any easier tomorrow night, when the Cats face Mason Plumlee, who scored 19 points and grabbed 14 rebounds in Duke’s win over Georgia State on Friday. In fact, Cal praised Plumlee for his improvement over the summer, telling reporters that he’s fronting guys better defensively. Hear that, Nerlens?
— One reason the Cats were able to beat Maryland was the Terrapins’ inability to make shots, which Cal said won’t happen against Duke. “They’ll go inside to Plumlee and have a bunch of three-point shooters.”
— Rebounding, rebounding, rebounding. Cal was understandably frustrated and surprised with the Cats’ poor effort on the glass, which resulted in 28 offensive rebounds for the Terps. “I thought we were so big and long, we’ll be able to rebound.”
— The crowd on Friday night was mostly Maryland fans, which Cal said helped fire his team up. He expects a similar environment in Atlanta.
— On Julius Mays’ eye injury: Cal said that Mays’ eye “closed up on him, and so we’re trying to see what that means.” I think that calls for some rec specs.