Here are ten observations from Press Row and the Press conference:
(1) During pre-game warmups, the team looked as loose as I have seen them in any game this season. They had a bit of a dunk contest that featured some of the funniest moments anywhere. The highlights were Woo’s attempt at a Jordan “Come Fly with Me” Dunk, Adam Williams showing some real hops and Randolph Morris picking up Patrick Sparks to allow him to participate. Ramel Bradley was the judge, but I never found out the winner.
(2) Jared Lorenzon was at the game. I am not sure if it is just me, but I think it looks like J-Load has actually put on weight since the last time I have seen him. He is a big, big boy.
(3) For those of you that havent gotten the chance to see a game live, the pre-game introduction showcases 70 years of UK hoops’ history and is really great. And then they do a “Cat Walk” entrance which is a bit like what the WWF used to do with the Rock and the Dems did with Bill Clinton at the convention….showing him walking to the stage. They show the team walking into the gym and tonight, Ramel Bradley led the team and talked to the camera the whole time in classic “Smooth” fashion.
(4) Shagari is enormous.
(5) In the post game press conference Tubby said he had virtually no complaints with the team’s performance…which is rare. But he was also very sympathetic to the plight of the Ole Miss guys. He really showed genuine remorse and you can see what a great relationship he has with Coach Barnes.
(6) This team has the best shades of any team I have seen. They all wear sunglasses at some point (until the media relations people make them take them off) that are usually quite good.
(7) Tubby said that the best shooters on the team were (1) Sparks, (2) Lemaster (3) Stockton (4) Crawford….just found that interesting.
(8) Tubby also mentioned that he feels that the team is finally playing good help defense. Says that it has taken longer than he wanted, but guys are finally getting it.
(9) Tubby laughed for QUITE a long time at the Sparks block saying….”we even got a block for Patrick….what can you say.”
(10) The noise when Lemaster hit those threes was really something. I am not sure how it translated on television, but it was the second loudest sound at Rupp this year, behind Rondo’s three against South Carolina.
Time to go to bed….