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John Calipari on Louisville: “This is a REALLY good basketball team.”

John Calipari sits at an impressive 10-2 against Louisville during his time in Lexington, but if he wants an eleventh victory against his rival this season, he’s going to have to take down one of the best teams in college basketball.

Led by second-year head coach Chris Mack, Louisville sits at No. 3 in the nation, with the Cards boasting the No. 24 overall shooting team and No. 34 3-point shooting team.

After reviewing the tape, Calipari confirmed what the numbers prove: “Louisville is really good.”

“Louisville is really good,” Calipari said during his pregame press conference on Friday afternoon. “Jordan [Nwora] is as good as they get. Dwayne [Sutton] is playing good. Ryan [McMahon] is shooting. I mean, this is a really good basketball team. Chris [Mack] has done a great job with his team, a veteran team. They run their stuff.”

What impresses Calipari the most, though, is just how well the Cardinals defend. Kentucky allows opponents to shoot just 38.5% from the field, good for a solid No. 38 overall, while Louisville holds opponents to just 35% shooting overall, good for No. 3 in the nation.

“I tell you what they really do is defend,” the Kentucky head coach said of Louisville, who boasts the No. 2 team in the KenPom defensive efficiency rankings. “They really guard and give you tough looks. You’ve had teams scoring 40 against them. It’ll be a hard game for us, I don’t care where it’s played.”

No matter the hype surrounding the rivalry matchup and how good the Cardinals are this season, Calipari knows this game “not make or break” for the program.

Unless the Cats come out on top.

“The good news for us is that it’s December, it’s not make or break for us,” the Kentucky head coach said. “It’s just December. It’s just the next game for us. I say this every year, unless you win, then it’s a huge game.”

Article written by Jack Pilgrim

Follow me on Twitter: @JackPilgrimKSR

7 Comments for John Calipari on Louisville: “This is a REALLY good basketball team.”

  1. Bud
    3:04 pm December 27, 2019 Permalink

    The real good news is he also said Kentucky was a really good basketball team too.

  2. Matt10
    3:40 pm December 27, 2019 Permalink

    I’m sorry I know some of you get sick of this comment but I can’t wait for the one and done era to end at UK, and not have to listen to this crap every dang year. With our facilities, history and fan base, when we get a coach that gets back to putting the university and fans first we will be great again. I like Cal ok but I don’t like his approach and I don’t care about the NBA. I don’t watch the NBA, no matter how many former UK temps are playing there. Chris Mack has Loserville in the top five after little more than a year! With veteran guys, not one and done wannabe’s, most of whom transfer if they’re not drafted in two years. I want a coach that will employ any strategy to win the title, even if it means playing an occasional zone, using a press, or other things the NBA doesn’t use.

    • KatFan48
      4:21 pm December 27, 2019 Permalink

      I’m one of those who thinks you are wishing for “pie in the sky”. The day of developing 4 year players is gone. Players capable of winning in power 5 conference games are headed to the NBA (I don’t watch NBA either). The other wishful thinking is for some mythical coach. WHO IS HE?? For these times we have the BEST. Go Cats!!

    • CrystalBall
      4:59 pm December 27, 2019 Permalink

      Don’t completely disagree with you Matt, but a coach isn’t doing the job he is being paid to do if he isn’t recruiting the best high school players. Which includes 5 star one-and-dones.

  3. Heavy C
    3:43 pm December 27, 2019 Permalink

    Walter McCarty suspended indefinitely

  4. J. Did
    7:03 pm December 27, 2019 Permalink

    Saw that. Indiana, and Title iX. As they say in the lame state of Indiana: “Alls” I could think of was this song: Last dance with mary Jane.

  5. Racerr11
    8:23 am December 28, 2019 Permalink

    Love Cal love CATS and what we’ve done since Cal has been here is amazing. I would of liked to win 2 or 3 more titles but the coach can’t play for them.