One of the most troubling stats from Saturday’s loss was the number of turnovers. Kentucky turned the ball over 17 times, which tied a season high and led to 21 points for the Jayhawks. This afternoon, John Calipari told reporters that he made his team sit down and review all 17 of those turnovers, which he attributed to “casual play.”
“Casual play. I showed them all 17. We went through all 17 because it was necessary. Aggressive turnovers don’t lead to baskets on the other end. The casual turnovers, ‘You’re just dribbling across and you lose it? What happened, did he grab you?’ ‘Nah, just kind of got away from me.’ ‘Excuse me?’ That’s the casual — the look away pass to the wing when you didn’t have to.”
Unfortunately, Saturday’s sloppy play wasn’t just a blip on the radar. In the past five games, Kentucky’s averaging 15.4 turnovers, which is way up from their season average of 11.8. All part of the process with a young team, said Cal.
“This is all stuff that when you’re coaching young kids, that you have to go through. And you’ve got to reinforce and — we went back to some of our older defensive drills just to get them in a different mindset.”
Calipari said after reviewing the tape, he has faith that his team’s issues are fixable.
“All this stuff is fixable. I’ve got a terrific team. I’ve still got the same guys that, had we won two games, we’d still get votes for number one,” Cal said. “I am not panicked. I wanted to win – you all know me well enough – I’m fighting throughout the game. I walked away after watching the tape, and okay, this stuff is all fixable.”
Cal’s so focused on fixing the mistakes that he cut his presser short, telling reporters, “Alright, let me go practice. I’ve got to go practice, guys.”