A Quadrant One Win
A win over Alabama would be a bigger resume boost than Kentucky’s 29-point win over Louisville. The Crimson Tide are currently ranked No. 30 in the RPI, which falls within the Quadrant 1 parameters. Kentucky’s NCAA Tournament resume is solid, thanks to plenty of wins that fall in Quadrant Two. Another Quadrant One win would all but lock up an NCAA Tournament bid.
Wednesday Night at the SEC Tournament?
The fall to the bottom is not as far as you think. Kentucky is just two games ahead of the worst teams in the league. Entering today Vanderbilt, Ole Miss and South Carolina are 4-9, tied for the worst record in the SEC. A lot will happen between now and the end of the year to change things, but a UK loss and wins from Georgia and LSU today would place Kentucky into the fourth Wednesday night slot.
A Rare Rupp Arena Loss to Alabama
Kentucky is 56-10 against the Crimson Tide in Lexington. The last time Kentucky lost to Alabama at home, Mark Gottfried roamed the sidelines. Tubby Smith’s 2006 team fell 64-68 thanks to Jermareo Davidson’s 28 points. You probably don’t remember that name, but you probably do remember Ronald Steele; he was Bama’s second-leading scorer with 14 points.
An Even Rarer Losing Streak
Kentucky’s current four-game losing streak is rare. It’s just the seventh since Adolph Rupp took over the program. Rupp and Tubby Smith never lost four-straight games.
If Kentucky falls to Alabama and makes it five straight losses, it’s “Kentucky’s Shame” bad. There have been just two five-game losing streaks in the history of UK and they occurred in back-to-back seasons. Kentucky lost six straight in February of 1989 as pressure mounted on Eddie Sutton in the midst of an NCAA investigation that would cost Sutton his job and keep UK out of the NCAA Tournament for the next two years. Playing with a piecemeal team, Rick Pitino lost five straight in 1990.
Kentucky fans cringe when they think of the embarrassment that took place in 1989. This team does not deserve to be associated with that time, and that’s why they can’t afford to lose five straight.