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Kentucky Basketball and the Terrible, Horrible, No Good, Very Bad Day

Saturday, January 20, 2018, did not go as planned.

What had the potential to be a special day for the Kentucky basketball program, turned out to be a complete disaster. It was a letdown of epic proportions and Big Blue Nation is an anguished fan base because of it.

We should’ve known it all would’ve gone wrong as soon as College GameDay went live from Rupp Arena to start the day. Nothing ever goes right when ESPN’s Saturday morning college basketball show comes to town, especially when Florida is the opponent. The Gators came in with a 6-1 record against Kentucky on GameDay appearances; that record is now 7-1 after yet another heartbreaking defeat.

But before we sulk in the immediate impact of the Cats’ second straight loss, we must first acknowledge Saturday’s other loss, which affects the distant future of the program.

Zion Williamson.

Williamson shocked the world by picking Duke as his college destination. Of the handful of schools he was considering, Duke was the only one Kentucky fans couldn’t stomach to see win out. And what makes it worse is no one saw it coming at all. There was very little mention of Duke in the weeks leading up to the decision. Clemson was the heavy favorite; South Carolina the nearby sleeper; North Carolina the late buzz; and Kentucky the long-time contender that still had a shot to land its top target. Duke was the afterthought, yet Duke was the choice when the hat went on Williamson’s head during a nationally-televised ceremony on ESPN2, just as UK-Florida tipped off, one channel over.

With the addition of Williamson, Mike Krzyzewski now has the top three prospects in the 2018 recruiting class, two of whom are considered legit superstars. Those same two — Williamson and R.J. Barrett — were John Calipari’s top two targets in the class, and there was a time when Calipari was almost certain he would eventually land both.

Instead he landed neither, solidifying his place beneath Coach K on the recruiting mountain. A short few years ago Calipari stood alone on that mountain, but now Duke and Coach K sit at the peak as Cal and Kentucky avalanche downward. As much as it pains us to admit it, Krzyzewski owns Calipari right now — it’s no longer an argument. He is beating Cal at his own game, and you know it’s eating Cal up inside.

We’ll have plenty of time to discuss and wonder how Williamson, Barrett and Cameron Reddish will share a basketball in Durham next year, and if there is any reason to have a 2018-19 college basketball season at all. It’s safe to say the Blue Devils will be the clear-cut favorite to start the year. In the meantime, we have Saturday’s other loss to deal with.

Florida.

Kentucky has yet another disappointing defeat on its resume, its second in as many games. The 66-64 loss to the Gators ended a streak of 30 home wins in conference play, and a streak of 57 wins against unranked opponents.

More importantly, it dropped Kentucky to fourth in the SEC standings with several challenging road games ahead. The SEC regular season crown is now unlikely, unless the Cats can muster up the toughness to steal some of those tough games ahead.

As for the actual game, Kentucky once again squandered a significant lead with a long scoring draught offensively. UK had an eight-point lead in the first half but found itself down by as many as eight in the second half. When UK fought back to take the lead with 5:39 to go, it scored only two more points over the next five minutes, and needed miraculous three-pointers in the final minute to even have a puncher’s chance in the end.

It’s clear this team lacks the go-to scorer who can take the ball and get a bucket to stop the bleeding when the offense goes stagnant. It also lacks the ability to put a team away when things are going well. The talent is there and the roster is finally at full strength, but the last two games were losses when they should’ve been wins, and now Kentucky will need to play its best basketball on other teams’ home turf to earn critical wins.

The world didn’t end on Saturday, January 20, 2018, but it was a terrible, horrible, no good, very bad day.

Zion Willamson gave Duke another painful recruiting victory over Kentucky, and Florida gave Kentucky another painful defeat on the basketball court.

And Big Blue Nation is not in a good place because of it.

Article written by Drew Franklin

I can recite every line from Forrest Gump, blindfolded. Follow me on Twitter: @DrewFranklinKSR

91 Comments for Kentucky Basketball and the Terrible, Horrible, No Good, Very Bad Day



  1. cking
    12:05 am January 21, 2018 Permalink

    Can we please get Orlando Antigua back???

    We have lost our MOJO!



    • RealCatsFan
      12:17 am January 21, 2018 Permalink

      Yes! Please! No matter what the cost.



    • runningunnin.454
      12:21 am January 21, 2018 Permalink

      Saw him sitting on the Illinois bench the other night….who’s going to call him?



  2. Catlogic15
    12:08 am January 21, 2018 Permalink

    And the elephant in the room is that UK could actually end up in the NIT, playing with the #1/2 recruiting class.
    The SEC is that much better.



    • Eazy
      12:19 am January 21, 2018 Permalink

      The SEC being that much better makes it easier to make the tournament actually. You can go 9-9 in league play and still make it. We will probably go 11-7 or 10-8 at worst and be a 5-7 seed. Just look at all the other teams who lost twice this week. Texas Tech, Oklahoma, and Wichita all got swept and they were in the top 10!



  3. ukkatzfan
    12:18 am January 21, 2018 Permalink

    Cal argues with you by saying this——-> Let me say this, and start by saying this: We’re going to be fine now. What I saw today that, is one of the best offensive teams in the country. We held them to 33 percent and 20 percent from the three-point line. We didn’t come up with some loose balls. We didn’t understand the importance of it. We had some freshman mistakes, up three and throw the ball out-of-bounds; what in the world are you thinking? A blocked shot, a kid doesn’t have a shot, he ball fakes and shoots an air — what? Whoa. Those, I can cure those.



    • AmazzzingLarry
      12:38 am January 21, 2018 Permalink

      UK didn’t hold Florida to 33% and 20% from 3. Most of their 30 3 point attempts were uncontested. The fact that the Cats couldn’t outscore a team who shot so poorly should be the focus. Ther’s no fire in this team. No leaders. Hers hoping Vanderbilt becomes that guy, because it ain’t Diallo or Knox.



  4. bbnZach
    12:19 am January 21, 2018 Permalink

    Duke is winning the next to championships. It’s over. Foreit the season. Fire Cal.



    • Blue Bill
      5:25 am January 21, 2018 Permalink

      And replace him with WHO? Name please….. moron.



    • 4everUKblue
      7:29 am January 21, 2018 Permalink

      you were probably saying the same thing last season and how did that work out for K, or do you even know?



    • Bull Filmer
      7:54 am January 21, 2018 Permalink

      The sky is falling……..woe is she………relax with the foolishness.



  5. Eazy
    12:19 am January 21, 2018 Permalink

    Duke was supposed to dominate this year, too. That’s not going well. Not worried at all.



  6. runningunnin.454
    12:28 am January 21, 2018 Permalink

    Some people just don’t understand parity. Michigan State lost two out of three, Wichita State has lost two in a row (in the AAC), and Arizona State is imploding losing 4 out of 6.
    One happy note, I was able to give a Hoosier fan 14 points against Michigan State in E Lansing…ha ha ha; can’t help it if they’re stupid.



    • AmazzzingLarry
      12:43 am January 21, 2018 Permalink

      UK will be unranked next week. With the #1 or #2 recruiting class coming into the season. The SEC is better than before but that is not an excuse for losing to a team that shot 20% from 3 and 33% overall. Still time to turn it around but this team is not playing well together right now.



    • BigBlueNationDude
      12:45 am January 21, 2018 Permalink

      Its truly sad how much effort you put into defending everything posted on this website. This team is going nowhere this year. Accept it. There is always other mediocre years on the horizon. We will be fine losing 10+ games a year. Cal is lucky the SEC has been so bad since he tookover. Now hes got competition its all bad.



    • runningunnin.454
      1:34 am January 21, 2018 Permalink

      Sad….ha ha ha, really? Nothing sad at all; I choose to support my Team and my Coach. I enjoy watching the games, and I enjoy watching young players develop. What is sad is that some people choose to wail like a baby when UK loses a game; what is sad is watching the games when you don’t enjoy them, and you get no pleasure from them.
      So they’re going nowhere this year….then I’ll wait til next year.
      Meanwhile, others will continue to watch UK games like some masochistic ritual, flinging themselves into the depths of sorrow.



    • Alex90
      1:45 am January 21, 2018 Permalink

      With a team full of freshman that d8esnt include a #1 sc9rer offensive sts are required to provide easy baskets and I have yet to see 1 play drawn up for this team. Remember the back door lob play for John Wall his freshman year? Where are the plays?! Sure there was a foul at the end but that all happened by chance and not by execution. Cal is expecting too much from this team, he keeps saying players have to be the leader but for now he has to do it and so far he has failed.



    • henderblue
      8:41 am January 21, 2018 Permalink

      Rg454 that last sentence is a classic…and true. Flinging themselves into the depths of sorrow…love it



  7. bbnfan101
    1:00 am January 21, 2018 Permalink

    I think it comes down to a simple fact about the one and done rule. You need that one “star player” to be a good basketball team, and I do not think Knox is ready to be THAT guy. Obviously with the SEC being as good as it has been in years Kentucky’s road does not get any easier and I think this is a critical point in Cal’s tenure here at UK. The fan base has obviously been on down this year and this team as a whole and I think today may have made it worse. Also, I think Cal’s inability to win the ‘big’ regular season games over the past 3 years has been concerning. Last years lost to Kansas probably cost that team a #1 seed and who knows what happens then (we beat UNC but it had to be done by a freak performance from Monk). I thought this game could also be a turning point for the team but it was not to be.

    I think we have been blessed to have a coach like Cal and it has come with a lot of great moments, but Cal will for sure have to make some changes this summer in order to change the direction and narrative of this program. As for this team, I think we will continue to struggle to win games down the stretch because we do not have a guard that can break down a defense to create and make a shot (teams have started to figure out SGA). But I think we need to have patience with this team and trust Cal because he has proved us wrong before.



  8. Jiminy Crickets
    1:05 am January 21, 2018 Permalink

    As Zion Williamson picked Duke it felt like a dagger. Then, while watching the game, all I could think about was if I was a top five recruit, I would probably rather play for Duke as well. Everything that Kentucky has to offer, ESPN, National televised games, one and done the NBA, and total exposure Duke has those same things and in many cases better. Our one argument has been the number of players to go to the NBA. But what has become the argument against Calipari , is that he has had that many players go to the NBA, and cannot win with them. If not for a once in a generation Anthony Davis Calipari would be the example of why not to recruit exclusively one and done. While I agree that 2010 overachieved, they lost nine games in the season, the same can be said for 2014 an 11 loss team. We had the most talented roster in America in 2009 and 2015, but couldn’t win it. What happened to Calipari this year on recruiting is simple. He lost the U 19 USA tournament, the first coach to do that in 16 years. All three of the recruits that Duke landed, were associated with that loss, and it once again proves that Calipari could not win with a loaded talented roster that he hand picked. Calipari will continue to get top 2 to 5 recruiting classes, but the days of the top heavy number one at each position recruiting classes we saw in his first three or four years is over. No coach stays on top forever, and Calipari is on the decline



    • urincatland
      7:26 am January 21, 2018 Permalink

      You’re exactly right!



    • makeitstop
      7:54 am January 21, 2018 Permalink

      It’s way too early to write Cal off. Coach K was over the hill, past his prime and headed out to pasture a few years ago, and now he’s king again? Cal is down now, had a couple mediocre recruiting years (this year and next) where his class rank was not based on super stars it was based on lots of good guys with NBA potential but not NBA star potential. Remember Duke has upper classmen who will play in the NBA but won’t be stars. Maybe Cal can learn and adapt, he always has. It may mean a shift in staff and philosophy, it may mean adapting to a new NBA eligility rule in the CBA soon, but it’s far too early to say he’s past his prime. They said that about Coach K before his last banner, and it’s been said of hall of fame b-ball and football coaches who then suddenly bc geniuses again when they won. He’s down but nothing unfixable if he acknowledges it, and I expect he has privately if not publicly w his “great” and “terrific” nonsense.



    • classof68
      9:36 am January 21, 2018 Permalink

      Could be Mr. Crickets. I’ve been getting the impression Cal doesn’t have the fire he did a few years ago. Sure, he gets into each game with his sideline cheer leading, but he’s been talking about retirement. Why do that unless it’s in your thoughts? On the other hand coach K has made the statement he has no plans of retiring for a long time even tho he’s 70. I’ll be surprised if Cal wins another championship before he’s out of here.



  9. 3 fan
    1:08 am January 21, 2018 Permalink

    Cal has to revamp his recruiting pitch. K is putting his nuts in Cals face

    This team simply is not good. How do not recruit ONE shooter?

    And here’s an idea. Draw up an inbounds play that actually attacks the basket!!!! And learn how to defend the same!!!!

    Worst UK day since Wisconsin loss



    • catsarerunnin
      9:09 am January 21, 2018 Permalink

      Yes we need MORE freshman!



    • BBNDan7
      9:38 am January 21, 2018 Permalink

      UNC loss last year? Any loss that ends a season is worse than a regular season loss and not getting a recruit. Chill



    • shelby
      11:07 am January 21, 2018 Permalink

      3 fan: he recruited Baker, but he’s hurt. Also quade is a very good shooter but only practiced once in the past 2 weeks.



  10. AFR0_SAMURAii
    1:33 am January 21, 2018 Permalink

    Using on ball screens correctly is non existent with this team.
    Clean crisp passes isn’t in their arsenal
    And are they sure what offense is? Things needed to be addressed.. wonder when we get to hear that tweak word..



  11. UKfan4TwoDecades
    1:44 am January 21, 2018 Permalink

    Whoever wrote this post/article for KRS my hats off to you for it touched on the thoughts, and sentiments, of me and Kentucky fans in general.
    Cal has been here for (approximately) a decade and but for Anthony Davis, and we have seen his talents in the NBA for he is a bona fide superstar, UK would not have any NCAA Championships and with the plethora of talent that came here, the results have been disappointing, to say the least.
    Recruits have seen these lacking results, Cal’s coaching weaknesses (i.e. zone, playing full-court defense, inbound plays, foul shooting, etc.), and they have decided to go elsewhere. There is nothing to signal that this will change and every reason to believe it will get worse. Kentucky was the “flavor of the month”, with flashy Cal at the helm, but I don’t see up and coming players dreaming of coming to Kentucky (sans players in the Commonwealth of Kentucky).
    Cal’s dribble drive (oxymoron) offense and his shortfalls as stated herein are a recipe for continued disaster.
    I will continue to root for UK, it’s players, it’s students, Cal, and his staff but he needs to be accountable and tell us what he is going to do to put winning NCAA Championships, and a first-rate education, as the # 1 priority.
    As many know the definition of insanity (per Albert Einstein) is doing the same thing over and over and expecting different outcomes.
    During the interim, I am having to prepare for many future losses let alone making it to the NCAA Tournament and winning it.



  12. CombatMedic_98
    2:14 am January 21, 2018 Permalink

    New staff…new plays…new recruits…
    Find a point guard and shooting guard STAT or this will be the worst UK team in the Calipari era…Period!!!



    • 4everUKblue
      7:40 am January 21, 2018 Permalink

      Uhhhhh…..stick to being a combat medic. You may be shell shocked or….just over vaccinated.



    • Mathlete
      8:03 am January 21, 2018 Permalink

      Do you not remember the NIT team with Jared Polson at point guard? There’s a pretty low floor for worst team in the Cal era



  13. beansnbeer2017
    2:19 am January 21, 2018 Permalink

    When are we winning another title? It’s been 6 years since the last one and only 1 in 9 seasons. We are matching the Tubby era in terms of titles. This cycle of getting guys who top out at nba g league level, watching them struggle all year, leave after 1-2 years, hear “they are young” all season, and then repeat with a new batch the following year isn’t winning us many championships. I don’t mind the one and dones who can get it done on the court like wall, cousins, davis. Being a dream factory is fine but not at the expense of winning a title. UK basketball is a business selling a product to consumers. The consumers have to be fed too. I hope Cal figures it out because he is still the man for the job as of now.



    • CombatMedic_98
      2:58 am January 21, 2018 Permalink

      Yep. Time for change!!!



    • Blue Bill
      5:28 am January 21, 2018 Permalink

      Name please?????



    • 4everUKblue
      7:36 am January 21, 2018 Permalink

      So many elite coaches and recruiters out of work on this site and only one job to fill. If only all you experts would submit your coaching resumes so we can get on with firing Cal and hiring one of you. Then and only then can the Kentucky basketball program meet all your expectations.



    • tippytoe
      10:15 am January 21, 2018 Permalink

      Billy D. Only time in recent memory when Cats could actually shoot the ball when he was shooting coach.



  14. FACTS
    3:48 am January 21, 2018 Permalink

    I hate it when everyone gets on here and defends Cal and everyone. They say we shouldn’t lose faith. Well to be quite honest with you Cal is not the same Cal he was a few years ago. He has lost his touch, being out recruited by Duke and others that weren’t even in the same league as us in recruiting before. I’ll still have faith in this team. I really like them, and I think when jarred is ready physically and mentally we can become a “tough” team. On the other hand, I have always said that Cal may not be the best X and O’s coach but he is the best at recruiting, now I can’t even say that anymore. Calipari needs to either step up or step down.



    • classof68
      9:57 am January 21, 2018 Permalink

      Pretty factual Facts. As I said in another post, Cal has been talking retirement and 70 yr. old coach K says he’s not even close to retiring. He doesn’t seem to have the enthusiasm he did a few years ago. It’s showing in many areas, especially recruiting. Some of these 5 star recruits should have been ranked 4 or 3 stars. P.J. and Nick are prime examples. What a difference landing Young would have made. Top paid coaches like Sabine and Calipari are expected to produce consistently great results. Otherwise, why pay them so much? Is Cal on the same level as Sabine? Duh.



    • runningunnin.454
      11:09 am January 21, 2018 Permalink

      Duh…the Sabines were a tribe of ancient Italy; one of the most complicated and finest sculptures of history is “The Rape of the Sabines” by Giambologna…or were you talking about the Bama football coach?
      And FACTS..when were you elected to the Naismith Memorial HOF?



  15. FACTS
    3:51 am January 21, 2018 Permalink

    I have also sat right behind Cal at a Kentucky game before and to be honest with you there was a lack of real coaching. It was a lot of yelling and little coaching. It seems Kenny Payne is the one who is teaching them out there.



    • FACTS
      3:53 am January 21, 2018 Permalink

      I hear Cal yell, “what are you doing!” I just get so angry when he does this. Cal, they don’t know what they are doing, you are coaching the youngest team in college basketball history. Maybe start tell them what they are doing wrong and coach them.



    • Mathlete
      8:05 am January 21, 2018 Permalink

      What is it you think they do in practice all week?



    • catsarerunnin
      11:12 am January 21, 2018 Permalink

      Well Facts it’s clear you’re an expert much like so many who complain. It wouldn’t matter how many games or titles Cal or any coach may win,it would NEVER be enough. I’m sure there are Alabama football fans like you who complain more about the championships lost than cheering for those won during the Saban era. I’m sure it hasn’t occurred to those who complain that opposing coaches use that against UK on the recruiting trail. They tell kids about a fan base that’s never satisfied because we all get lumped in to your disloyal,unsatisfied group of “fans”. You and those like you could never be happy with any coach. And of course any season that doesn’t end with a title is a failure. As a lifelong UK fan I am so happy I’m not like you.



  16. FACTS
    4:09 am January 21, 2018 Permalink

    He should now know at this point in the season who his scorers are and how to get the ball to them. I see know go some games with not shooting more than 3-5 shots a half. This is one of our best scorers and he is only shooting the ball 5 times in a half!
    First of all, Gilgeous Alexander- the closest thing we have to a leader. We need to keep putting him in pick and roll action and he can also knock down an open three. Those are his strengths.
    Knox- Calipari is hurting his confidence first of all. If I’m Cal I’m walking up to Knox and telling him I’ve got his back before the game and that I want him to work for shots. Cal needs to learn how to coach each player differently. Knox can knock down threes,get in the lane, and post up. He is developing a great smooth floater. We need to work the ball to him more so he can make that runner. Tell him to score!
    Quade- he is another guy who could be a leader for this team(get healthy.) get him the ball behind the arc. Quade needs to shoot at least 5 threes a game. He can get hot quick and when he gets hot he is hard to stop. Just go score and don’t turn the ball over.
    P.J.- keep getting him the ball down low and at the ELBOW. He has a great rip through and drive to the basket at the elbow. He just needs to stay on his toes and always be ready. I feel like he gets a little to clumsy somethings.
    Nick Richards- get him his hook shot. Free throw line Jumpshot. He needs to just play basketball. That’s all I can really say.
    Jarred Vanderbilt- whoooa! He is the guy I think. When he was on the court with them it’s like we all know each other better. He can be the man for this team. Cal needs to let him take over. Take off on rebounds GO GO GO! Shot it when he is open from behind the arc. Pick and Roll. Drive and kick. He is everything we need right now. Please Jarred step up.
    Ok that’s all I’m going to talk about, but we need to just play for each other. That’s one thing I will agree with Cal on. That’s what theAnthony Davis squad had. That’s what KAT team had. Let’s get it together cats. I just realized I didn’t talk about Diallo or SKJ.



    • runningunnin.454
      11:13 am January 21, 2018 Permalink

      I’m not even going to read all of that drivel; send it to the UK Athletic Department.
      Talk about delusions of grandeur.



  17. BlueHeaven
    6:45 am January 21, 2018 Permalink

    NIT NIT NIT



  18. Patrick_David
    7:10 am January 21, 2018 Permalink

    Dear Facts,
    What is your Head Coaching record on the College level? High School? Middle School? ….Church League maybe? What I thought….GTF outta here…



    • 4everUKblue
      7:38 am January 21, 2018 Permalink

      Thank you Patrick. There are many armchair coaches on this site, Facts is just the latest.



    • ScoggDog
      7:56 am January 21, 2018 Permalink

      Yet there seem to be just as many “armchair coaches” here to defend him. I guess those opinions don’t mean squat either. Should those people “GTF out” too ?

      Enough people “GTF out” … and you folks that are left are going to need to buy a TON of tickets.



    • 4everUKblue
      10:14 am January 21, 2018 Permalink

      All I’m saying Scoop is if you have a better coaching/recruiting resume submit it or STFU! It seems from listening to all the complainers that our only hope is to take resumes from all the armchair coaches who think they can do better to find Cal’s replacement. I personally don’t think I can do better, I’m just tired of all you who do.



    • 4everUKblue
      10:16 am January 21, 2018 Permalink

      Again….So many elite coaches and recruiters out of work on this site and only one job to fill. If only all you experts would submit your coaching resumes so we can get on with firing Cal and hiring one of you. Then and only then can the Kentucky basketball program meet all your expectations. I don’t consider myself among those with all the answers but there are many on here who do.



    • classof68
      12:24 pm January 21, 2018 Permalink

      So fans should not critique a high paid coach? What’s the use of being a fan when you’re not allowed to express your opinion? I argue you are not a fan if it doesn’t matter whether your team plays well or not.



  19. BCO
    7:53 am January 21, 2018 Permalink

    Zion was an absolute gut punch. Like to the point I’m wishing Coach K would have something bad Happen to cause retirement. Just agonizing. We have to land a superstar to go with this team. Even as upperclassmen, this team will lack a star. James Wiseman is our only hope.

    But more than that, I’m done with college basketball this season. It’s unwatchable. The officiating is beyond bad, to the point it’s ruined the game. Even if we were good, which we aren’t, it’s be hard to tolerate.



    • runningunnin.454
      11:17 am January 21, 2018 Permalink

      Something bad happen to Coach K….seriously? You need to stop watching sports.



  20. urincatland
    7:54 am January 21, 2018 Permalink

    All Cal is doing is taking pressure from himself when he says THEY’RE FRESHMEN and they’re the YOUNGEST TEAM in The Country and pointing fingers at the players. As bad as I hate saying this he will never win another championship while he’s here.



  21. makeitstop
    8:02 am January 21, 2018 Permalink

    Drew is that the despair u we’re talking about?



  22. makeitstop
    8:05 am January 21, 2018 Permalink

    Again I would add attacking other fans is uncalled for. U disagree, write it but save the insults for the people who root against not for us.



  23. BlueHeaven
    8:06 am January 21, 2018 Permalink

    Coach K may not win titles even though he is kicking Cal’s ass in recruiting but he is pretty much guaranteeing UK and Coach Cal won’t be winning titles either.



  24. sp
    8:19 am January 21, 2018 Permalink

    Why would recruits want to come to UK at this point? To have your “coach” yelling at you nonstop, dropping fbombs on you on national TV? Then go to post game pressers and throw you under the bus? To play in boring ass Rupp Arena in front of 75 year old ladies reading books and knitting during a tie game? To have your “fans” tweeting at you that you suck and need to transfer? We call ourselves the best fan base ever…we may be the worst and are driving the best kids away. They know now that they don’t need UK and it’s not worth putting up with all our BS for just one season.



  25. BigEastCat
    9:00 am January 21, 2018 Permalink

    Poor coaching and recruiting justified by rhetoric such as “this is a young team”.
    This team’s recruits while good players, cannot carry a team in the upper echelons of college basketball.
    Heck, maybe Pitino can get cleared to coach again………..Cal just doesn’t have it anymore….



  26. Rixter
    9:12 am January 21, 2018 Permalink

    Everybody keeps talking about UK having the # 1 or 2 recruiting class. If I’m not mistaken, every one of those kids in the recruiting class is 18. Fresh out of high school. Playing against 22 year olds, with 3 and 4 years college experience.
    The honest truth is, often a senior 3-star > freshman 5-star.



    • 4everUKblue
      9:24 am January 21, 2018 Permalink

      That’s right. They played a veteran team, whether ranked or not it matters. We had a chance to win in spite of playing poorly and getting 13 less free throws.



  27. Rixter
    9:21 am January 21, 2018 Permalink

    Coach K is the 3rd oldest coach in D1, behind Boeheim and Cliff Ellis.. he’ll turn 71 next month. How much longer can he keep coaching? Seems the older he gets, the more 18 year old kids want to play for him. I don’t get it.



    • 4everUKblue
      9:27 am January 21, 2018 Permalink

      He used the Kentucky brotherhood pitch against a naive young kid. Former Kentucky players had been talking about the UK brotherhood for some time now and specifically when Liggins joined the Pelicans and K used it against all the other teams.



  28. UKLugo
    9:50 am January 21, 2018 Permalink

    a. Which loss stings more? Zion or Fla? To me, because it was to Duke, it’s Zion.
    b. I think nit winning gold with Team USA is being used against him on the recruiting trail, specifically against Duke and their own gold medalist over there.
    c. The Zion decision really makes me doubt the credibility of these recruiting “experts”. Where are the getting their intel? I’m not even on the “in” and I called Duke weeks ago. This where his mom has wanted him to go all along. and he announced on her birthday! Yes, she wouldve been happy with him staying close to home, but he wanted a blueblood and wanted to get away a little. Kansas was way too far. UK was too far for mom. Duke was a natural compromise. Did you see his mom reading his announcement for him?? Nothing against moms. I love them. But this was his mom’s choice.



  29. tbradg
    9:59 am January 21, 2018 Permalink

    Wake me in March…if I’m not busy following the baseball team I’ll tune in.



  30. classof68
    10:02 am January 21, 2018 Permalink

    Misery loves company. The only consolation of losing Williamson to Duke is that UNC fans must be really depressed. Kansas and Clemson fans can’t be too happy either.



  31. rlburd2
    10:03 am January 21, 2018 Permalink

    When coach k gets top freshmen he loses in 1st or 2nd round. History.



    • 4everUKblue
      10:09 am January 21, 2018 Permalink

      He may have passed Cal in recruiting but he is still behind in developing young players.



    • classof68
      12:19 pm January 21, 2018 Permalink

      That’s right! Players first! The hell with UK basketball and the BBN.



    • 4everUKblue
      1:05 pm January 21, 2018 Permalink

      If I were coach and had to choose between the players of a bunch of know it all fans I’d definitely pick players first.



  32. BLUEsky
    10:13 am January 21, 2018 Permalink

    Here’s a newsflash for ya. These teams have been beating KY on the recruiting trail for the last 40 plus years, with the exception of the Cal years. Coach does not deserve the criticism he is getting here. BBN is officially spoiled. Get behind your team and coach. It is much more productive than the constant negativity. You will feel better too! I don’t like the losses either, but this is starting to sound like the football message boards with all the Debbie downers around. Get with it BBN!



    • runningunnin.454
      11:21 am January 21, 2018 Permalink

      That makes too much sense…you’ll have to leave.



    • 4everUKblue
      1:06 pm January 21, 2018 Permalink

      And guess who spoiled us with all the winning….I believe his name is John Calipari. Some of you may have to go to wikipedia and verify it.



  33. Aar
    10:14 am January 21, 2018 Permalink

    Last night, I saw a team that has it more figured out than not on defense and is struggling to find a rhythm on offense.

    With the exception of their first six points of the game, Florida did not get up an easy 3 all night (rushed open 3s are as tough for many players as contested 3s). Making opponents take tough 3s is this team’s defensive signature to date. To get to the next level defensively, they need to improve mostly in rebounding and also in help defense in the paint. Cal will get them there. He’s done it so many times before.

    Early, on offense, they figured out how to attack the paint, devolved into a one trick pony with no midrange or 3-point action. They then further devolved to their old “I’m gonna get mine” habits. Identifying an opponent’s weakness and exploiting it is progress for this team. The next step is to selflessly bring variety to keep defenses honest. Again, Cal has closed this gap many times before.

    Adjusting to having two key players back is not easy for any team. Now, the training/medical staff needs to keep everybody healthy and Cal needs to work on getting them to lose their selves in the team. Again, he’s done it before but it’s really hard. I hope there’s enough season left to get it done.

    Welcome, again, BBN to the usual mid-season rough patch. It’s going to get worse before it gets better – it happen to every Cal team in late Jan, early Feb. College Gameday in Morgantown is going to be tough and not looking past Mississippi State to that showcase is even tougher. This team is growing through these experiences. I just hope this stretch of games doesn’t damage their tournament resume too much.



  34. CatsandPats
    10:32 am January 21, 2018 Permalink

    You mean what little resumè they even have to begin with? We just need to adjust to the fact this team will be a 10-12 loss team come tournament time probably put as an 8 seed so the committee can laugh in hopes of a 2nd round exit for our young Cats. However, I do remember a game not that long ago against one Wichita State. Be careful what you wish for and Cal is still my favorite man for the job.



  35. Philthy
    10:42 am January 21, 2018 Permalink

    Has UK ever successfully defended an in-bounds play? Or successfully ran one? This team needs basic fundamentals. I would give them a chance in an AAU tournament but not in an NCAA tournament where, more times than not, experience wins out.



  36. KYJelly
    11:00 am January 21, 2018 Permalink

    Something is going on with Duke’s recruiting. Not saying it’s anything bad, but it’s not like they have this great track record of preparing guys to be successful in the NBA like we do, and they have a tendency to get eliminated early in the tournament, and Coach K hasn’t shown that ability to get a team full of freshman to play together. I’m confused what his pitch is, and I feel like he and his staff go after the parents of the kid with the educational opportunities of Duke and how to college environment is compared to other schools. I guess we will find out next year if he can mold all those freshman into a unit by the end of the year like Cal.



  37. Han
    11:06 am January 21, 2018 Permalink

    Duke getting Zion really sucks, but let’s not start this “Hand them the trophy” crap.

    People did that when Kyrie got healthy for Duke. Oops, no title.
    People said Duke was gonna win last year. Oops, no title.
    People saying it this year with Bagley. We’ll see.
    Now they’re saying it about Duke next year. We’ll see.

    K is an overall better coach than Cal (the titles show it), but like Cal, he’s won once when depending on freshmen. It’s hard. And while we missed the tourney the year we lost Noel, the rest of the time we make deep runs. Duke, on the other hand, has had early exits more often than us in this era.

    As for our recruiting class, I’m not one to believe Wiseman will reclassify, and there’s obviously no replacement for Zion. But we don’t know who we’ll lose for sure, and there’s always the chance of a graduate transfer out there if we lose too much.

    Let’s wait and see if Duke’s ridiculous recruiting class works out any better for them than ours did when we had the twins, Randle, Young, Johnson, Lee, etc. or when we had Wall, Cousins, Bledsoe, etc., or when we had Towns, Lyles, Ulis and Booker. Dukies underachieve too, you know.



    • Aar
      1:23 pm January 21, 2018 Permalink

      “K is an overall better coach than Cal (the titles show it)”

      I wouldn’t go that far. K got into a program that commits massive resources to his sport when he was young. Cal didn’t get into a program like that until he entered his fifties. Huge difference there.

      If I’m going to pick a bone with Cal at all it’s that he tries to approach every game in exactly the same way by focusing on his players and the way they play. It leaves him susceptible to opponents who take a long time to specifically prepare to beat his teams. It bit him in 2010 with WVU, in 2016 with Wisconsin and earlier this with with USC. I like it for the regular season and through the Round of 32. However, in the Final Four and for some Sweet Sixteen and Elite Eight opponents, preparing specifically for the opponent could be helpful. Also, he might be well served to treat some games differently to keep his team from having letdowns after certain wins – like after beating UCLA in the Sweet 16 least season and Louisville this season.



  38. shelby
    11:06 am January 21, 2018 Permalink

    I think it’s kinda sad that we fee we have no chance to win unless we have exponentially more talent than everyone else. How many 5 stars does Nova have? How many did they have when they won the title 2 yrs ago? How many 5 stars does Purdue have right now?



  39. Big Meech
    11:26 am January 21, 2018 Permalink

    If I was a 5 Star I wouldn’t come here either. Have u ever read how the fans talk so much shot about the players and the coach on the fan websites. If I read this site than I would never go to uk. Sounds like the worst team in the nation especially after a loss to Florida. The coach can only recruit one and dones who he can’t coach and he can’t get the best players because he can’t recruit any more. Sounds terrible



    • 4everUKblue
      1:10 pm January 21, 2018 Permalink

      Agreed, makes us look like a bunch of ignorant hillbillies.



    • Skeps
      5:58 pm January 21, 2018 Permalink

      You sound like a University 6 fan. Can’t have any negativity so Mitch Barnhardt needs to start censoring websites and radio stations. You people are insane to think differing opinions steers away recruits. Go read other teams websites and revise your statement about only Kentucky having negative fans. I’m sick of people like you blaming the losses on fans. The fans have made tremendous contributions to the success of this program and you loathe them for it. This is not a players first program. I’ve been a UK fan for decades and now people like you criticize fans. Open your eyes and actually cheer for the university.



    • Big Meech
      8:19 pm January 21, 2018 Permalink

      I never blamed losses on fans and I have had season football tickets for 19 years so I’m pretty sure I’m all in for the university. I was saying that I wouldn’t come here to see how the fans turn their back on an 18 year old kid if he has a bad game. It’s one thing to voice frustration in play but there have been many terrible comments on these kids. I’m guessing the kids don’t feel good about what’s going on but I’m still going to ride with them. Say Whatever u want I’m just saying if I was a recruit and I read a fans comments on a player and they called him a “cancer” to a team Bc he played bad, I might think twice



  40. BigEastCat
    4:46 pm January 21, 2018 Permalink

    Let’s face facts:
    Ky dominating college Bball is a thing of the past.
    Now its Duke UNC and Kansas.
    You get flash and excuses with Cal, and championships with Roy and K……….



  41. Aar
    7:14 pm January 21, 2018 Permalink

    When Cal had Joel Justice start pursuing younger players, he indicated that they were having to change opinions of UK that had already been formed by opponents. At that time I knew we’d be taking lumps in recruiting for a few years. I hope the 2019 class could be the start of UK getting back on the right recruiting track. Until then, are multi-year players all that bad?



  42. jameehkyfan
    8:49 pm January 21, 2018 Permalink

    I know as a uk fan, I don’t have a positive feeling about the ways are going and looking toward the future. We are spoiled but expect greatness. Problem is in high school fundamentals don’t seem to be a priority. If you can score then your a future nba star, only thing is defense wins. Knox can score but gets beat 95% of the time or he fouls. And coach cal teams are the shaq of the ncaa. So many missed points.points that a 2* player with heart and pride would make. They are promised the world and taught they don’t have to earn it. As a uk fan I have pride in my team and the players, if they only knew how to do the same.