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The GameDay Advantage

It has been a little while since the GameDay crew last set up in Lexington. John Calipari was in his first season as head coach at Kentucky, and the honeymoon of the resurgence of Wildcat basketball was still lingering all across Big Blue Nation. Two and a half seasons, and one national championship later, ESPN’s Saturday show is back, and ready to cover another marquee matchup — at least in the eye of Kentucky fans.

A win over Missouri means the Cats are likely to make the Big Dance. A loss makes the road into the field of 68 all the more difficult. Fortunately for Kentucky, Missouri has struggled mightily on the road this season, posting a 4-6 overall record, including just 1-5 in Southeastern Conference play. The lone SEC win came last week against an abysmal Mississippi State team.

What’s more, College GameDay brings with it a great deal of excitement; an added level of enthusiasm which travels all across the country to every stop. Kentucky would know. They are the record-holder for largest show crowd in GameDay history when more than 22,000 people crammed into Rupp Arena in 2010, which led to a wild environment as the No. 2 Wildcats knocked off No. 12 Tennessee by 11 points.

No team needs the extra roar from the crowd more than your Wildcats do right now. Teetering on the verge of an NIT season, GameDay arrives in Lexington just in time to help push the Cats on the right side of the postseason fence.

The GameDay advantage is real. Since appearing in Lexington last, home teams have posted a 19-7 record. Furthermore, this season home teams are undefeated, going a perfect 5-0 leading up to Saturday’s Kentucky vs. Missouri showdown.

Even more interesting, in the last four years there have only been four matchups of unranked teams on GameDay. Twenty-eight games and only four unranked matchups is impressive for the GameDay crew’s selection process, but the good news for Kentucky fans, is the home team won those four games three times.

Big upsets on GameDay are rare. Only three have occurred in the last four years: No. 5 Michigan State falling to unranked Illinois in 2010, No. 1 Duke losing to unranked Virginia Tech in 2011, and No. 3 North Carolina dropping one to unranked Florida State in 2012. And in all three of those games, the ranked team upset happened on the road; likely due to that enhanced home court advantage.

Numbers and history don’t guarantee anything. The Wildcats must come out and fight for a full 40 minutes like this is the last game of the season. Give the Tigers any opportunity to steal another road win for their resume; you can bet they’ll capitalize. But the fans must do their part to make the GameDay advantage real. It is in your hands. Be loud, be proud, and did I mention, be loud?

Article written by Stuart Hammer

B.S. Broadcast Journalism from the University of Kentucky. @StuartHammerKSR

17 Comments for The GameDay Advantage

  1. Mc
    3:04 pm February 22, 2013 Permalink

    The crowd will be real loud for GameDay, and will intimidate the hosts and crew. Then when the game hits, a new crowd will appear and it will be loud 3 out of 40 minutes, with 37 minutes of a quiet movie theatre atmosphere.

  2. r
    3:13 pm February 22, 2013 Permalink

    “…won those four games three times.” uncle.

  3. Home Court Advantage
    3:24 pm February 22, 2013 Permalink

    90% effective 45 % of the time, everytime! Book it.

  4. Fica incoulo
    3:32 pm February 22, 2013 Permalink

    Hope UK comes out strong at the beginning of the game.

  5. Succio il catzo
    3:33 pm February 22, 2013 Permalink

    Cal should have them ready to play

  6. Joe B ate Digger's Lunch
    3:35 pm February 22, 2013 Permalink

    Digger’s record vs. UK was 4-12. Somebody needs to put that on a sign.

  7. #1Fan
    3:35 pm February 22, 2013 Permalink

    Even I have given up. This team needs just forfit and save face cause they suck

  8. Commish
    3:37 pm February 22, 2013 Permalink

    It doesn’t matter what there record is on the road …..they will play the game of their lives at Rupp….happens every time….CATS gotta bring their A game…Rod Odom hit 4 three pointers in the first half of Vandy game with a fugly jump shot…..Ross or Brown will have a career day!…we have to match them!

  9. I'm Sleeping
    3:57 pm February 22, 2013 Permalink

    Regardless of whether or not we make it into the tournament, I have to believe we are one of the top 68 teams in the nation. That being said I know it isn’t the way the system works. It sort of leads me to think that if they are not going to let everyone in, then they should take the best 68 teams. Ok, I just woke up and hope I was just dreaming and didn’t say that loud enough for anyone to hear.

  10. Real UK Fan
    4:08 pm February 22, 2013 Permalink

    What they need to do is have Mr. Phelps interview Coach Hall to talk about the Kentucky/Notre Dame games when those two were coaching.

  11. BravoBigblue
    4:08 pm February 22, 2013 Permalink

    If we don’t make the NCAA tournament, it will one of most disappointing seasons of my lifetime. And that’s a long time.

  12. Al
    4:11 pm February 22, 2013 Permalink

    Why-TF is with all the negitive comments? Man, I just hope none of you all are working the Suicide Hotline.

  13. BravoBigBlue
    4:28 pm February 22, 2013 Permalink

    12 – I guess you haven’t watched them play this year?! WTF? They look like one of BCG’s teams.

  14. Jay
    4:36 pm February 22, 2013 Permalink

    The home team for game day always covers the spread and most of the time easily.

  15. UK Freshmen
    5:14 pm February 22, 2013 Permalink

    It will take more than a slim Game Day win to scrub the stink from the Tennessee throttling.

  16. UK Freshmen
    5:25 pm February 22, 2013 Permalink

    I like penis. My father’s is my favorite.

    11:53 am February 23, 2013 Permalink

    ==== GAME DAY ! ====