After the first two weeks of play in the SEC for the UK men’s basketball team the Wildcats have found themselves with a 3-1 record. Other than a heartbreaking overtime loss on the road to Arkansas, the Wildcats have played solid and steady against their league foes, and will need more of the same to keep up with the undefeated Florida Gators. While there is definite room for improvement, let’s take a look at what/who the Cats will match up with in the coming weeks.
Tuesday, January 21: Texas A&M at Rupp Arena
The Aggies have been one of the surprises of the league, winning their first three games before falling to Mississippi State yesterday. They are a tough nosed defensive squad, but struggle mightily to score the ball. The Cats should be able to handle A&M at home, especially without anymore Elston Turner’s….
Saturday, January 25: Georgia at Rupp Arena
Another surprise team in conference play who is the definition of scrappy. Definitely does not play pretty basketball, but the Dawgs did beat the Cats last season in Athens. Kentucky has mountains more talent than UGA, so at home UK should be able to put this one away easily despite the Bulldogs’ 3-1 SEC record.
Tuesday, January 28: LSU in Baton Rouge
This one will be tough. LSU was a predicted NCAA Tournament team at the start of this season, and has had underwhelming results up to now. They have virtually no impressive wins and some bad losses, and that adds up to a team that will be hungry for a big win at home when they have the opportunity. They have the talent, but have not been able to gel and come together to use their potential.
Saturday, February 1: Missouri in Columbia
Another tough road test for the Cats. The Tigers are still predicted to make the NCAA Tournament, but some bad losses have put their potential seed up into the air. Like LSU, Mizzou will be desperate for a top notch win at home. Kentucky once again is the better team, but if the Cats aren’t careful, they could lose two in a row on the road to Tiger teams.
Tuesday, February 4: Ole Miss in Rupp Arena
Ahhh, finally. The moment we’ve all been waiting for. Well, maybe it’s just the moment I’ve been waiting for. Marshall Henderson comes to town. Andy Kennedy’s squad is a long shot to make the tournament at this point despite a 3-1 record in conference play, but they lost a lot from their successful team last season. Kentucky should take care of the Rebs at home easily.
Personally, I see Kentucky winning all of their home games during this next five game stretch, but the road is where it gets tricky. Missouri and LSU are both capable teams than have the potential to get it going any night they want to. If the Cats aren’t prepared, I could see them losing one if not both of the away games.