The most troubling stat from last night’s game? Kentucky’s 16 turnovers, which led to 23 points for Mississippi State, the most points off turnovers the Cats have allowed in a game in the past three seasons, according to ESPN Stats & Info research.
Kentucky’s sloppiness with the ball was a problem all night, but it was particularly painful midway through the second half, when the Cats turned the ball over five times, leading to a 17-3 run by Mississippi State. Malik Monk accounted for three of those turnovers on his way to a career-high five for the game. It’s worth noting that while Kentucky had 16 turnovers, the second most they’ve had in a game this year, Mississippi State had 19, yet another reason last night’s game was brutal to watch.
“They turned it over some, but we did, too, and the crazy thing was they didn’t press, they didn’t trap, they didn’t do anything and that’s the most turnovers we may have had all year,” Calipari said afterwards.
“I don’t know what really caused that, but we just made a couple mistakes,” Wenyen Gabriel said of Kentucky’s error-prone stretch in the second half. “People will probably call it young mistakes. We’re learning from that and hopefully by the time March (arrives) that doesn’t happen. It’s good to happen now than in March.”
That is certainly true.