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Panic and Perspective: Why It Isn’t Time To Worry….Yet

Stop me if you’ve heard this one before. A talented but young Kentucky team travels down to the state of Alabama to play in a game they are favored to win. It’s a sold out building. Shirts are given out. The rival coach is looking for a program building win. No, I’m not talking about yesterday’s loss on the plains of Auburn. I’m talking about Brandon Knight and the 2011 team’s loss at Alabama which gave them a record of 14-4 (2-2 SEC).

Many comparisons have already been made between this year’s team and the one from Cal’s second year on campus. They both followed one of the most beloved teams ever. (John Wall’s revitalization vs 38-0) The reliance on the perimeter. (Brandon Knight, Doron Lamb, Darius Miller vs Tyler Ulis, Isaiah Briscoe, Jamal Murray) The ineffectiveness of a star recruit. (Enes ineligible vs Skal’s development) The lack of production from the post (Terrence Jones & Jorts’ inconsistency vs you get the picture). This season mirrors that year in many ways including the possibility of a spectacular finish.

Make no mistake Kentucky’s loss to Auburn (KenPom: 162, RPI: 114) is right up there with the worst of the Calipari era. But as 2011 and 2014 demonstrated these road losses won’t mean much when we get into March. In 2011 the Cats made their run as a 4-seed and in 2014 they made the final game as an 8. The potential is still there so don’t be smashing the panic button just yet. Kentucky is just going to take a little bit of time to get there.

Article written by Andrew Cassady

Follow me @ACassady_KSR

55 Comments for Panic and Perspective: Why It Isn’t Time To Worry….Yet

  1. apocalypse
    2:12 pm January 17, 2016 Permalink

    Murray still needs to locate a shot he wont take but our inside game is non existent. Poythrees piss’s me off more than anyone because the kid is 6′ 9″ and 240 lbs. of pure athlete that plays worse than a girl. The man should dominate in these games and he looks like he would rather be somewhere else.
    Labassier needs to stay on the pine, the kid just flat out stinks right now so give one of the other kids a shot. Heck, they cant do any worse. This team is just not very good, regardless of what Calipari says.

  2. UK Big Board Update
    2:26 pm January 17, 2016 Permalink

    Excellent post – too bad some of our fans are too stupid to realize that all is not lost.

    But then again, I think those fans (WeareBBN, kyjohn, insideinfo2, kt1374) aren’t happy unless they are criticizing something. I believe they are what the UK message boards call the “Fellowship of the Miserable”?

    That 2011 team got BLOWN OUT by UCONN in Maui, lost almost every SEC road game, and yet ended up knocking off the overall #1 seed Ohio State and 2-seed UNC back-to-back in the tournament, and reached the Final Four. I remember the same negative shit being said on here back then, too.

    I think I speak for the majority of BBN when I say the last 6 years have been a lot of fun.

    • Jaxson
      2:56 pm January 17, 2016 Permalink

      Most of BBN can carry on a conversation without childishly insulting people. You don’t speak for anyone but yourself and certainly not for BBN. You’re an unfortunate outlier, but keep typing. God knows you have nothing better to do. Go Cats!

    • UK Big Board Update
      3:11 pm January 17, 2016 Permalink

      Says the guy who posts under multiple screen names. lol 😉

    • UK Big Board Update
      3:13 pm January 17, 2016 Permalink

      You’re just mad that I call you out with logic. Did you not agree with my post? Have you not had fun these last 6 years?

    • JakeBBN
      4:49 pm January 17, 2016 Permalink

      Big Board you act like a crying little girl stomping your feet until you get your way. As i read the message boards I see your comments degrading people about their opinion. Who made you emperor of the world? What makes you think your opinion is better than everyone else’s? Who cares how many accounts someone else has? This comment section is for people to say what they want to say, not to say what YOU want to hear. So how bout you shut the hell up, go sit in the corner, suck your thumb, and wipe those tears away you big crybaby

    • UK Big Board Update
      5:26 pm January 17, 2016 Permalink

      LOL, I guess I’m not entitled to my opinion?

      Everyone can voice what they want, except me?

      You don’t make much sense. Thats just my opinion. 😉

      And welcome to the boards!!

    • tippytoe
      8:21 pm January 17, 2016 Permalink

      Couldn’t agree with more with Jake, Jason and everyone else about Big bore update. He should be banned from this site. He has also broken the the rules here with his vulgar and explicit language more than once.

    • CATandMONKEY
      9:11 pm January 17, 2016 Permalink

      Which rules are those? Just curious.

    • UK Big Board Update
      12:02 am January 18, 2016 Permalink

      tippytoe is also cats paw… 😉

      Pesky IP addresses….

  3. smahurin
    2:26 pm January 17, 2016 Permalink

    I do think this team is similar-ish to the 2011 team. But its also a cross between the 2013 and 2011 teams. They aren’t quite as good as 2011, but they are nowhere near as bad as 2013.

    2011 actually was a really solid team, they did struggle on the road but were honestly a very good team. They played solid defense and when they were hitting their shots were quite tough. Its just they were entirely reliant on the 3 ball with Knight/lamb/miller/liggins. If they went cold they didn’t have an athlete to break a team down off the dribble and while jorts had his moments and T. Jones was talented they didn’t have a post presence either.

    This team is different in that there are really only 2 guys total who can be counted on the get buckets. Ulis either through scoring (or creating) or Jamaal. Ulis is tremendous anyway you slice it and Jamaal is great offensively. They need to (and cal realizes this more than anyone) develop another consistent source of offense because if Ulis or Murray have an off shooting day (or when both do as they did saturday) we’re brutal offensively. But the more concerning thing is we should be better defensively.

    I think we can and will get better. Ulis is just such a competitor I think he’ll eventually drag some of this team along, and murray is talented enough that he’ll put up big games. We just need someone else to consistently step up and make plays or at least ease the burden on ulis and murray and maybe more than anything just stop making as many dumb plays that kill our momentum.

    I think we’ll be alright in the end, but not a top 3-4 team and favorite to win the title going into the tourney. But I still think we have the potential to make noise come that time of year.

  4. kfarr718
    2:39 pm January 17, 2016 Permalink

    Idk I see a lot of talent on this team truthfully just not playing to potential, I think we have a leader in ulis and we all know what poythress can do I think skal Derek and Marcus all are keep components to this teams success Jamal’s shot selection and then briscoe just becoming more complete. Yea Jamal is putting up points but he’s got play making ability I mean he balled out vs pros in the summer it’ll come with this team frustrating but not panicking yet if we make the tourney it’ll be about the draw

    • CatBlue in LR
      6:57 pm January 17, 2016 Permalink

      Punctuation is really not a bad thing. It won’t hurt you at all…

  5. sammydog
    2:41 pm January 17, 2016 Permalink

    This team has no post presence and lacks team identity and cohesion. If Alex and Lee were going to become what we need they would have done it by now. Not every player with talent has the heart and desire to put forth the effort needed to be an NBA player. That doesn’t make them bad people. Just means they will end up doing something else with their lives. I have never felt Alex was laser focused on the NBA. He is a smart fellow, will have his degree, and options for his life. The chemistry for this team is just off somehow. I think Cal will be banging his head against a wall with this group. I’m ok with that. Can’t be great every year.

  6. yarg
    2:45 pm January 17, 2016 Permalink

    I dunno, man. Cal has already pointed out the team’s biggest weakness: UK has no post up presence. And I’m not really sure if Lee or Skal have the body/skillset to fill that void. Humphries’ style of basketball at the moment isn’t suited to bang down low yet, either. This could just be a good rather than the great type of team we’ve been spoiled by during the Cal era. I do think Briscoe could be a Bledsoe type player by the end of the season, though.

  7. G3P0
    2:48 pm January 17, 2016 Permalink

    Give me Jorts over any of our guys down low. At least he had the ability to make a post move. Sure he had hands like rocks and couldn’t jump if you gave him a trampoline, but damn… he could at least give us something better than what we have right now down low.
    I completely trust Cal but I think at some point you have to throw Tai in there just to see if he can give us ANYTHING down low. I mean at this point what can it hurt?

  8. bosshogg24
    2:54 pm January 17, 2016 Permalink

    Bench Alex and Marcus, it is debatable if either is a division 1 player. If they played for Rupp he would have sent them packing a long time ago. It is embarrassing when your best post man is a 6′ 3″ guard (Briscoe). Start Derek Willis and anybody from the bench that wants to win!

  9. kfarr718
    2:54 pm January 17, 2016 Permalink

    Alex baffles me as does Marcus but I mean I’m ok with this group at the end if they get beat by the better team that’s basketball and right now we’re not getting beat by the better this teams not even close to last year like cal said wvu talks we win by 100 auburn talks we lose not the best sign I do think still this team is talented but just like football this past year like was said earlier no identity you can’t beat superior teams playing 3 on 5 I think cal knows what he’s doing and the reality is we all knew going into the season this team would struggle a little in hopes for a special March. Truthfully I cringe with the idea of a new team every year and I get it the games become a freshmans game but no mater what the scouts say we as a fan base truly don’t know what we’re going to get out of a brand new team year in and year out skal is proof and Julius randles year is proof. Can’t complain our fan base is spoiled I know I am

    • CatBlue in LR
      7:03 pm January 17, 2016 Permalink

      Mr. Punk Chu Ashun really wants to become your friend.

    • kfarr718
      9:09 pm January 17, 2016 Permalink

      No life

  10. scottg74
    3:00 pm January 17, 2016 Permalink

    We need rebounding if we have no post presence. I don’t understand Poythress mentality at all. Its like he’s stoned every game.

    Play Willis 30+ and no Skal unless leading. Tell Briscoe to rebound and defend.

  11. UK Big Board Update
    3:20 pm January 17, 2016 Permalink

    Man, a crappy Wisconsin team with no coach is beating #4 Michigan State right now. Tom Izzo is a horrible in game coach, who obviously didn’t prepare for this team. He can recruit, fine, but he has more talent, and should be winning this game. They look like they don’t have a clue. He shouldn’t be so worried about displaying Valentine as an NBA prospect, and use the guys at the end of the bench who want to fight. I’ve said it before, and got bashed, but Izzo is one of the worst game coaches in college. He only has ONE title to show for it.

    • UK Big Board Update
      3:48 pm January 17, 2016 Permalink

      They can do a lot better with the proper play calling and coaching. I’ve said it for years, Izzo is one of the best recruiters in the history of college basketball. He’s an incredible motivator. He’s also a horrific in game coach. He does not allow his kids to make a mistake and play through it. He does not set up the right game plan for each outing. When the talent is off the charts, it’s easy to overlook Izzo’s play calling shortcomings. When it’s an “average” team (by MSU standards), it’s painfully obvious…stop screaming, intimidating, bullying, and just COACH.

    • UK Big Board Update
      3:51 pm January 17, 2016 Permalink

      He just got out-coached. I don’t expect MSU to win it all every year and I don’t expect them to do anything this year. He depends on talent to win games and the years they don’t have 5 NBA players on the team, he can’t coach. When I say he can’t coach, I am talking about setting up plays, setting up ball screens, curls. Only problem is, teams have them figured out. Clog up the middle and let them shoot 3s. You would think Izzo would “tweak” something, set up plays, but unfortunately he does not.

    • Jaxson
      3:51 pm January 17, 2016 Permalink

      Wow. It’s as if you’re liking your own comments and responding to yourself. Way to go!

    • UK Big Board Update
      3:52 pm January 17, 2016 Permalink

      That shit team just handed MSU its ass.

    • UK Big Board Update
      3:54 pm January 17, 2016 Permalink

      LOL. This argument again – its like you can’t believe that someone would like my posts, and it pisses you off.

      MEANWHILE, you have multiple accounts under the same IP address. LMAO

    • UK Big Board Update
      3:55 pm January 17, 2016 Permalink


    • UK Big Board Update
      3:56 pm January 17, 2016 Permalink

      This game proved that Izzo is not a game coach. His defense is predicated on having a shot blocker, you play tight on the perimeter and make the other team drive, no one to block shots this year so they give up the three. His offense is based on driving to the basket. So he recruits players who can’t shoot a jumper. AAU ball has ruined the game. A 5 star is someone who can drive and dunk. Watch the mix tapes of their wonderful recruits year in and year out. Dunks and layups. No fundamental skills like ball handling, defense, jump shots or team play.

    • Jaxson
      4:01 pm January 17, 2016 Permalink

      You responded six times to your own comment. Just stating the facts.

    • UK Big Board Update
      4:04 pm January 17, 2016 Permalink

      I was just copy and pasting the same stupid shit some of our “fans” were saying about Cal last night, and changing it to Tom Izzo and MSU.

      Sounds pretty ridiculous, doesn’t it?

    • Jaxson
      4:10 pm January 17, 2016 Permalink

      So you’re just talking to yourself and having imaginary conversations? That’s really, really sad. Online message boards cannot substitute for actual human interaction. Remember that. Don’t worry, I’m never going to call you out on your lonely nonsense ever again. Get some help. The BBN is praying for you. God bless.

    • UK Big Board Update
      5:19 pm January 17, 2016 Permalink


    • UK Big Board Update
      5:19 pm January 17, 2016 Permalink


    • WeareBBN
      6:37 pm January 17, 2016 Permalink

      BigBoard I am sorry to break into your conversation with yourself but you missed an important part.
      You did not mention that Mich State also played without their starting PG {out with injury}. If we played without Ulis in any game from here on out we would lose badly, not by a point on the road. We did play without him one game, remember being tied at half before getting by a horrible Illinois State team at home.

    • UK Big Board Update
      6:41 pm January 17, 2016 Permalink

      And we played with Dom Hawkins last night.

  12. The Rest of the story
    3:28 pm January 17, 2016 Permalink

    Just not our year fans. Cal should have gotten a solid post player instead of putting the season on Skal. He is a project and should not be on the court till he puts on weight and muscle and some kind of basketball IQ. I just wonder in practice if he is really a lot better than Humphries and the wood chopper? Instead of the 3 on 5 we have been playing at least play Willis to give us a fourth. Beyond that this is not gonna be the year of the Cat.

    • UK Big Board Update
      3:35 pm January 17, 2016 Permalink

      Cool. We get it. You won’t be watching them anymore this year. Quit repeating yourself.

    • The Rest of the story
      8:28 pm January 17, 2016 Permalink

      Why don’t you just STFU Big Bore. You are now one of the most hated on here congrats on that.You give zero substantive comments and attack anyone that has any comment contrary to yours. Being an ass requires no education and again congrats on your part.

    • tippytoe
      9:11 pm January 17, 2016 Permalink

      Congrats to Big bore! He worked hard for most hated with no substance. Again we, along with Rick and Rand all salute you.

    • UK Big Board Update
      12:15 am January 18, 2016 Permalink

      Looks like I struck a nerve with the trolls!! LOL

      Its the usual hater suspects hating on me. How ironic.

    • EdC
      7:42 am January 18, 2016 Permalink

      Ironic doesn’t mean what you think it does.

  13. SinceStollField
    4:48 pm January 17, 2016 Permalink

    Jorts made so many plays in the tournament by out-hustling the other team’s big men. That kind of effort is what the Cats need out of Lee and Poythress. We can always hope.

  14. bluehappypappy
    5:29 pm January 17, 2016 Permalink

    This team is in trouble!!! Unless Wynard and/or Humphries give us an inside presence?! Forget Poythress, I’ve watched, hoped and waited for this kid to dominate since he arrived…not gonna happen!!! Marcus Lee is as good as he’s gonna get! Skal is not gonna be much better “physically” than he is by seasons end.

  15. rainman
    6:05 pm January 17, 2016 Permalink

    Sad part about our situation is, we have good enough guard play
    to go all the way! And I pretty much agree with BHPP, I’m tired of
    hoping AP starts thinking like a ball player, and Lee is about maxed out!

    So, unless one of the bench players, (Humphries or Wynyard) majically
    turns into a beast, we’re in trouble!

    I haven’t given up hope yet, but it looks pretty grimm at the momment.


  16. Wildcat Sheli
    7:08 pm January 17, 2016 Permalink

    Yesterday’s loss just shouldn’t have happened, like Tyler Ulis said. They were up 12! But as with our games vs. Louisville and Mississippi State, we had a good lead that we let go. Only in this case, we lost. That shouldn’t happen. You can’t be winning with 1:44 to go and lose! (Gotta stop my brain here from drifting to our last Wisconsin game . . . it does happen to the very best of teams) They’ll be fine if they can continue gaining when ahead. (Remember the days from ’98-‘07 when we’d get up by 9, substitutions would be made and we’d lose? Oh, my! But I digress . . .) I know Cal wants them to keep increasing their lead and not see it diminished. I’m sure they “why’s” of why these leads are depleted are being analyzed by the coaching staff. It is my hope that corrective measures will be taken to stop this from continuing to happen. We have the talent. So many have the heart and fight. There’s still time left to get it right. Go ‘Cats! Go Big Blue!

    • The Rest of the story
      8:43 pm January 17, 2016 Permalink

      I am betting Coach Cal is trying to figure out how to “get it right”. The problem is where does UK “get it right” in the post. Obviously there is no player on the team at this time who can give the Cats the post presence needed offensively or defensively. Do they go all out on offense and just play the best defense they can? Do we play Ulis, Murray, Brisco, Mulder, and Willis and just shoot 3’s until the middle opens for layups. That’s what Auburn did as they hit 6 more 3’s than the Cats and the middle opened up for them for easy baskets down low. Seems like an open ended problem as the Cats really have no way at this time to solve what is wrong. If there is an answer Cal Will find it but so far he is shooting blanks with little real ammo to go to.

  17. stitch doctor
    9:18 pm January 17, 2016 Permalink

    I don’t profess to know the methods employed, but Cal needs to contact Huggie Bear for the secret to getting players to give effort witnessed in WVU’s games against Kansas and Oklahoma. If the Cats lose giving similar effort, so be it.

  18. sharpshooter62
    9:38 pm January 17, 2016 Permalink

    I don’t see any similarities with the 2011 team and this year. No offence but this year’s team has no one in comparison to Knight, Jones, Lamb, Liggins, etc.

  19. stitch doctor
    10:11 pm January 17, 2016 Permalink

    We need to face a couple facts about this team: We out-talent everyone we play but we don’t out-hustle anybody. U.S. being everybody’s Super Bowl is getting old and over-used…..we need to live up to that description by matching the opponent’s effort. MJ put it best when he said his greatest assets were his desire and defense. ‘Nuff said

  20. Angelo
    12:04 am January 18, 2016 Permalink

    We don’t have a four or a five… This year is over… Focus on next year!!

    • UK Big Board Update
      12:16 am January 18, 2016 Permalink

      You seem happy about it….

  21. Sublem
    2:41 am January 18, 2016 Permalink

    Yeah, once SEC play started, I figured this team would be very similar to the 2011 team. I’m not panicking, because there will be a time where this team will finally “get it” and will be a force.

  22. EdC
    7:37 am January 18, 2016 Permalink

    This team is supposed to have had an advantage of leadership from upper classmen. A junior and senior starter. When that leadership disappears, doesn’t seem to have any real heart or desire to excel and is soft what does that teach the younger guys?

    Watching Murray heave bad shot after bad shot without apparently even THINKING that there may be a better shot available is annoying but then again what happens if he does get it to Waldo or the Invisible man? Does anybody expect them to finish strong or make free throws?

    I wish there was some glimmer that any of that would change but there are no indications that it will. Ulis can only do so much. MAYBE last game’s Willis will keep showing up and he is the real upperclassman leader?

    I am confident that Cal must not be seeing what he needs to see from the lads from down under but maybe starting them and at least being physical for some small part of the game would get somebody else going.

  23. Sentient Third Eye
    8:21 am January 18, 2016 Permalink

    The bottom line for me is I really hope this team makes the NCAA tourney…because they have a losing record against likely NIT participants.