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Well, at least we won the football game

© Jamie Rhodes

© Jamie Rhodes

© Jamie Rhodes

What can you say? Kentucky lost to Louisville 73-70 tonight, only the second time that’s happened during the Calipari era. I’m pretty sure I could write 2,000 angry words about Kentucky’s performance tonight, but you know what? It’s Christmastime and I’m too damn tired to do that. So, let’s all just take a breath, look it over, and then move on.

Louisville outplayed Kentucky in every way

Coming off a win for the ages vs. North Carolina in Vegas, Kentucky was due for a hangover. Louisville pounced on that opportunity, exploiting Kentucky’s weaknesses and then some. The energy was just off, Monk was off, Fox was off, defense was off, rebounding was off. It was all off. You could sit here and make excuses all day, but the simple fact is, Louisville outplayed Kentucky tonight and it showed.

Monk went cold

After dropping 47 on North Carolina, Malik Monk went cold tonight, scoring only 16 points and going 1-9 from three-point land. That one three he did hit was huge, pulling Kentucky within one with eleven seconds left. Sadly, it was too little too late. After four days of seeing his name all over the news, Monk coming out flat and maybe a little cocky was to be expected, but that three at the end gives me hope he’s got some Aaron Harrison moments in his future.

Quentin Snider won the matchup with De’Aaron Fox

Who knew Quentin Snider would have such a game? Snider was unstoppable, scoring a game-high 22 points along with 6 rebounds and 5 assists. On the flip side, De’Aaron Fox scored 21 points, but only had 3 assists to 4 turnovers. De’Aaron showed why he’s one of the most talented players in the country with speed so fast ESPN’s cameras couldn’t keep up, but he also showcased some poor defense and questionable shot selection. Never thought I’d say it, but Snider outplayed Fox tonight.

Can Camp Cal please include a lesson on shot selection?

Because I can’t see another contested 18 footer or a bizarre jumper when the lane’s wide open. This has been a problem all season, but our guards especially need to learn to drive and get fouled instead of taking an ill-advised jumper. Speaking of getting fouled…

Free throws, free throws, free throws

If you look at the stat sheet, the reason UK lost is clear: free throws. Kentucky was 19-29 from the line and five of those misses came from Bam, who had the chance to tighten the game in the final minutes but failed. Gotta hit those, they free!

Otherwise, Bam had a great game

If Kentucky had won tonight, we might be calling it Bam’s coming out party. Bam had a huge second half, finishing with 11 points off 5-6 shooting and 9 rebounds. Those may not seem like flashy numbers, but he was doing all the little things around the basket we’ve been wanting him to the past few months. While some of the Cats looked like they were sleepwalking, Bam played with energy and assertiveness.

“We have to have more fight and come up with more balls,” Bam said afterwards. “We just have to win.”

If only the guards had gotten the ball to Bam a little more, maybe I’d be writing a different story.

Here’s an unfortunate stat

Kentucky is now 2-6 in their true road openers in the Calipari era. Gotta chalk that up to freshmen being freshmen, right? In the postgame presser, Calipari blamed the loss on a lack of discipline, and shouldered the blame.

“The biggest thing is we didn’t have discipline,” Cal said. “No discipline, and I told them that’s not their fault, that’s my fault. We’ll get it right.”

The players will go home for a few days and then Camp Cal is on

Cal said he’s giving the guys a couple of days to spend with their families for Christmas and then they’ll come back and Camp Cal will be on in full. It can’t come soon enough.

This is not the end of the world

It may feel like it, especially if Louisville fans know your Twitter handle, but a young team losing their first real road game to a top ten team just happens sometimes. Yes, it sucks, especially when we’re not accustomed to it, but Kentucky will learn from it. Right, Cal?

“It’s December 21st, we start four freshmen and a sophomore. We’re not ready to go on an opponent’s court that’s a top ten team and win. We’re just not. And thank god it’s only December 21st. I’ve got a lot of time.”

Honestly, if you believe in karma, you probably also felt like things were going our way way too often lately. Don’t worry, the universe will correct itself, hopefully sometime around March.

Until then, let’s take a page from Calipari’s book

…and handle the loss with class. For a rivalry to be a rivalry, the other guy has to win once in a while, and Louisville earned it tonight. Calipari not only refrained from flipping off the fans, he showed up at the postgame presser and congratulated Pitino and the Cards on the win. Others didn’t handle their win as well:

Hey, how about that bowl game…

Article written by Mrs. Tyler Thompson

No, I will not make you a sandwich, but you can follow me on Twitter @MrsTylerKSR or email me.

42 Comments for Well, at least we won the football game

  1. Ridge Runner
    10:40 pm December 21, 2016 Permalink

    And… at least we aren’t Duke tonight. 11pt win over cupcake as they deal with a nutcase.

    • Ridge Runner
      10:44 pm December 21, 2016 Permalink

      I mentioned this earlier as well but our schedule had an impact as well no matter what anyone says. Back to back hard fought games within a week has a margin that would have us celebrating versus saying we got out played

    • runningunnin.454
      10:56 pm December 21, 2016 Permalink

      They said Allen had two tripping incidents last year….actually, three I know of and maybe four.
      Yale, Florida State, and Louisville. And, now, one this year….he needs to be banned.

    • 4everblue
      5:41 am December 22, 2016 Permalink

      If K were the class coach everyone credits him for, he would have sat him the rest of the game AT LEAST. Two former Duke players called him out and said as much. But guess what? At Duke winning is apparently everything, not teaching kids to be men.

    • bobbyblu
      8:40 am December 22, 2016 Permalink

      Why does it matter what Duke did? Quit being a baby

  2. runningunnin.454
    10:43 pm December 21, 2016 Permalink

    Just like to say…….41-38.

  3. TeddyD
    10:49 pm December 21, 2016 Permalink

    My only question is why do we start 4 freshman, maybe 3 but not the 4th.

    • Aar
      4:47 am December 22, 2016 Permalink

      Gabriel’s and Willis’ stat lines from last night say as much as you need to answer that question. Besides, Gabriel hustles more, brings better energy and does a better job of playing within the offense. On the other hand, I suspect Willis’ confidence boost from starting and Gabriel’s energy off the bench could be a better combination than what we’re currently getting. Nonetheless, Cal’s a HoF coach who is in the gym with them daily. I’m not second guessing him.

  4. Sarahvah
    10:59 pm December 21, 2016 Permalink

    Fox and Bam not being able to hit a free throw really cost us, but I think we’ll be okay

  5. JC Ice
    11:02 pm December 21, 2016 Permalink

    At least we have that L’s down picture.

  6. Ridge Runner
    11:05 pm December 21, 2016 Permalink

    Someone mentioned this earlier in another thread but this makes Kansas a must win for our chance at a #1 seed in March. A 1-2 loss SEC run and even a runner up tourney championship can be absorbed but now we have to beat Kansas

    • TeddyD
      11:12 pm December 21, 2016 Permalink

      If you think our defense will get us to a # 1 seed sir you are very optimistic.

    • Ridge Runner
      11:15 pm December 21, 2016 Permalink

      There is 2 months left before March and tell me 4 other teams that you think will move upward by March as much as we could?

    • TeddyD
      11:20 pm December 21, 2016 Permalink

      Yes I have faith in Coach Cal to get them ready, I hope they will correct their defense mistakes by then. I am faithful, Cal will get them ready, I believe.

    • Ridge Runner
      11:25 pm December 21, 2016 Permalink

      Yes, the potential is there. We play in a weak conference which helps us during our learning curve and Kansas looms as a pivotal game. I’m not saying we will be a 1 seed as it depends on a lot of factors with what the other teams do. But we can only control ourself and our ceiling is higher to achieve that more than others.

  7. dakich is stupid
    11:36 pm December 21, 2016 Permalink

    99% of opposing Kentucky fans know to beat KY just give fox and brisco long 2’s. How hard would it be for the coaching staff to tell them two,”Hey since you never hit those shots why don’t you STOP shooting/missing those shots.

  8. BGLawdog
    12:31 am December 22, 2016 Permalink

    As I said during the post-game show, UK was doomed after Pitino’s pregame prep talk in which he encouraged his team to “win just one for the stripper”

  9. trumpetguy
    1:45 am December 22, 2016 Permalink

    Monk, ANYBODY, including us as BBN, that think some long contested 3s, which sometimes go in, are going to carry us deep into NCAA, are falling for Fools Gold. Yep, they look sweet, but poor shot selection will lose far more games than they will ever win. Just saying. And if UK coaches believe we can continue to switch all ball screens…….opposing coaches will continue to say thank you. Willis/Gabriel/Bam getting isolated off dribble by much quicker, smaller guys. Plus, anyone remember UCLA frontcourt players going over Hawkins/Briscoe/Fox etc. UL’s Quentin Snider change of pace by Bam in crunch time case in point, among many others…………….practice time needed

  10. keiths
    6:31 am December 22, 2016 Permalink

    So embarrassing, Our 5 star hotshot guards got destroyed by a Bruno Mars lookalike. And of course, as usual. Cal absolutely Shat to bed when the game was close at the end. His a$$hole puckers when he actually has to COACH. We need a 3 to tie the game, and Mulder is on the bench?

    • RealCatsFan
      7:19 am December 22, 2016 Permalink

      Yeah. You tell ’em. Bring back Billy G.

    • RexRox
      5:32 pm December 22, 2016 Permalink

      Not knocking Cal at all but I was a bit confused by the lineup after the final time out. Defense was not even a factor at that point.

  11. brian
    6:53 am December 22, 2016 Permalink

    Anyone catch the UL ginger after the game turn, point and yell at a UK fan saying ‘f*ck y*u!”? If you DVR’ed the game, he is right by a Gumby and a joker cutout as they are showing the final score; around 9:16 PM.

    • RealCatsFan
      7:17 am December 22, 2016 Permalink

      It’s in a vine at the bottom of the article.

    • brian
      8:04 am December 22, 2016 Permalink

      My computer at work disables all video links…oh well.

    • bobbyblu
      8:41 am December 22, 2016 Permalink

      Have you never said f*ck you before? grow up

    • Booby Petrino
      9:42 am December 22, 2016 Permalink

      Lol i believe the Louisville ginger is the one who needs to grow up. I guess all that pent up frustration from always losing to us and that football loss just had to come out some way.. That’s the Louisville way… Trashy

    • J-Dub421
      9:46 am December 22, 2016 Permalink

      Because nothing says grown up like screaming F*ck you! into the face of an opposing fan after your team wins…

    • RexRox
      5:35 pm December 22, 2016 Permalink

      Hence the name loserville; once a loser, always a loser. Even on those occasions when the scoreboard says you won.

  12. za
    8:07 am December 22, 2016 Permalink

    Guards have to learn when they have to be the man and when they don’t have to be the man. The ball needed to be given to Bam more, Monk’s shot selection was absolutely terrible, Guards let Snider be the man. So disappointing to lose to them when they have 1 pro maybe.

    • rockatao
      8:26 am December 22, 2016 Permalink

      Exactly. I said after the UNC game … great game, now just don’t let Monk turn into a second Rodrick Rhodes. Just felt that he had to be “the man”.

    • Sentient Third Eye
      9:23 am December 22, 2016 Permalink

      Even though Bam missed a ton of free throws that would have given us the win, I still feel better about him after the game. He is going to be fine from the line, and last night we finally saw his inner beast begin to emerge. This team has a long way to go, but they have the biggest upside of any team Cal has had. If they reach their potential, they will be frighteningly good. Plus, they seem to be on a schedule to peak late in the year, which only helps our tourney hopes (less time to figure out how to beat that version of us).

  13. maxemerson333
    8:30 am December 22, 2016 Permalink

    Does anyone know why SKJ does not play? I am not saying he should but just wandering why he never gets in.

    • bobbyblu
      8:41 am December 22, 2016 Permalink

      wondering* cause he sucks…gonna be so many tears today

    • Sentient Third Eye
      9:25 am December 22, 2016 Permalink

      He doesn’t “suck”, but he does need time to develop. He could be a three-year kid that becomes a late lottery pick eventually.

    • Booby Petrino
      9:37 am December 22, 2016 Permalink

      No tears here. I’ll trade a Dec basketball loss for our “slapd*ck” football team beating louisville’s ranked football team w the Heisman qb gladly. Also there’s that whole L2C8 thing… Im not crying over 2 losses out of 10 tries

    • RexRox
      5:37 pm December 22, 2016 Permalink

      Best shot blocker on the team.

  14. abgunz
    9:31 am December 22, 2016 Permalink

    I’ll take football win over basketball win every time.

    • Sentient Third Eye
      10:06 am December 22, 2016 Permalink

      Yes. Louisville was due one in basketball anyway, as they will always probably win two out of every ten our twelve against us.

  15. dshwildcats
    11:04 am December 22, 2016 Permalink

    I see that some of the Louisville trolls have crawled back out from under their rocks after the football game! The CIA and FBI wouldn’t have been able to find some of them after the football game between the two schools back on November 26th! Lol!! Funny that these cowards haven’t shown up on KSR before now.

    Yes, the loss is disappointing right now! But, this team should be a much better team in March. They have a lot to work on going forward. Credit the Cards for really bringing it last night, and for taking advantage of Kentucky’s mistakes, and lack of poise! And, credit to Coach Cal for not skipping his post-game press conference; actually giving credit to Pitino and the Cards for the win; and, for not flipping off the Louisville fans as he left the Yum Center last night!!