The 2012-13 season in underway, and just like in 1989 and 2009, the Kentucky Wildcats will struggle to make the NCAA Tournament. To stay apprised and educated, follow me on Twitter @NotJerryTipton. Here’s the weekly notebook:
*Bullet With Butterfly Wings: The 2012-13 Kentucky Wildcats are the first team of the John Calipari era that do not feature a player coached by Billy Gillipsie. The 2012-13 Kentucky Wildcats are also the first team of the John Calipari era to lose to Duke, lose a home game, lose to Louisville, and find themselves out of the polls. Calipari apologists are sure to point out that the primary players on the previous 3 teams were all recruited by John Calipari, but facts are stubborn things. With no Ramon Harris, Josh Harrelson Darius Miller to keep it grounded, this Kentucky team is — according to ESPN’s Joe Lunardi — on track to be a 7 seed. Meanwhile, Gillispie’s last UK team was a 4 seed. Is this mere happenstance? Or is it the case that these Cats would be able to cure a lot of what ails them simply by being “5% tougher?” Whatever the case may be, it’s important to remember that Billy Gillispie hasn’t lost a game in almost 10 months, unlike some ::cough cough:: coaches.
*Disarm: In the game against Louisville, Kentucky coach John Calipari and the unranked Cats conspired to commit Free Throw Fraud. Late in the first half, referee Ed Corbett called a foul on Louisville’s Russ Smith. Replays show Smith fouling Nerlens Noel. However, as U of L made a substitution, Alex Poythress replaced Noel at the line. While UK fans will argue that the officials — whose job it is to make sure the proper shooter goes to the line — agreed with the decision to send Poythress to the line, it should be noted that Kentucky just happens to have a winning record in games officiated by Corbett. Coincidence? You be the judge. Eventually, Calipari went on to deny that he had anything to do with the 1963 assassination of President John F. Kennedy in Dallas. However, he has yet to offer proof.
*Landslide: Last Saturday, the unranked Kentucky Wildcats traveled to the Yum! Center in Louisville, where they lost to the 4th ranked Cards by a score of 80-77. This does not bode well for Kentucky. As evidenced by the box score UK was lucky to even be in the game. Consider: Louisville missed 4 three point shots, 26 two point shots and 8 free throws. Had the Cards hit just half of those shots (which is a fair assumption, as most college basketball teams shoot roughly 50%), then Kentucky gets pummeled, 116-77. Lucky for UK, it simply wasn’t UofL’s day. And this doesn’t even take into account the fact that Ryan Harrow shot 100% on three pointers, and Kyle Wiltjer shot 100% on free throws. If the two sophomores didn’t just happen to have career days, things could have been even worse. No wonder the notoriously objective Pat Forde called Kentucky “a bubble team.”
* On this date: On this date in 2012, Kentucky was in both the AP poll and and Coaches’ poll. It was the last January 4 to date that the Cats were ranked.