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Wildcats ready for Ottawa

© Mark Zerof

© Mark Zerof

© Mark Zerof

After months of duking it out against each other, the Kentucky Wildcats Men’s Basketball team say they are ready to face a new opponent not clad in blue and white. The team will get their first chance tomorrow night at 7 p.m. in an exhibition game against the Ottawa Braves.

It’s good to know the guys are eager to begin the season, after reeling from another Kentucky Wildcat football beat down, the game will give Kentucky fans a nice distraction.

“I can’t wait,” junior college transfer Mychal Mulder said. “We’ve been really, really eager to play somebody other than us. I feel like it’s going to be really fun on Monday and we’re all really excited for it. We’re pretty used to playing each other, and we know what we all do well and don’t do well.”

Besides the team, another person has been looking forward to the matchup against the Braves – UK Athletic Director Mitch Barnhart.

Barnhart, a Kansas native and Ottawa University alum, said he was excited to watch the Wildcats take on his former college:

“I’m excited that Ottawa University, a school near and dear to my heart, will have this opportunity. Seeing a group of young men from my alma mater playing in Rupp Arena will be something I will always remember,” said Barnhart, who will be recognized during the game for being named the 2014-2015 Under Armour AD of the Year.

While Ottawa may be close to Barnhart’s heart, I’m sure the AD will be rocking blue and chanting “Go Big Blue.”

Even Ottawa is excited to come to Rupp Arena to play the Cats, with OU head basketball coach Aaron Siebenthall saying the program was honored to play in historic Rupp Arena:

“This is a tremendous opportunity for our program to play the highest winning Division I program in the history of men’s basketball,” said Siebenthall. “Playing against Kentucky in Rupp Arena will be a once-in-a-lifetime experience for our players and coaches. We are truly honored and would like to thank Coach (John) Calipari, DeWayne Peevy and especially Mitch Barnhart for the opportunity.”

Marcus Lee said he expects the game will give the guys “new wind” and clarified the difference between practice wind and game wind:

“It’s the beginning of the year, and we have a long ways to go,” junior forward Marcus Lee said. “Some people have to get new wind from not just practice wind but also game wind because they are two different things, and you just have to figure out how to get through it.”

While everyone is excited for Kentucky Basketball season to finally be here, the coaches are taking the opportunity to see how the guys have progressed over the summer and where to focus in the future.

Coach John Calipari has noted he was surprised by this team’s lack of fight and it has been a buzzword that was frequently used during practices and interviews. Cal said he expected his players to more aggressive and tougher on their drives to grab rebounds, gain and maintain position in the post and dive after 50/50 balls.

The game also gives coaches a chance to evaluate Alex Poythress’ recovery who will be facing off against an actual opponent for the first time since December last year.

The game will be aired live on the SEC Network +.

I’m going with Cats by 1,000.



Article written by Ricki Barker

Writer of things. Watcher of sports. Wearer of blue. Sometimes all at once.

15 Comments for Wildcats ready for Ottawa

  1. Grammar Police
    12:36 pm November 1, 2015 Permalink


  2. The Original WTF Guy
    1:06 pm November 1, 2015 Permalink

    Unless something has changed, and I hope it has, the game will not be broadcast on the SEC Network. It will, I believe, be streamed via Watch ESPN. At least that is what is indicated at the UK Athletics page.

  3. JeffC
    1:13 pm November 1, 2015 Permalink

    UK will be on SEC Alternate + tomorrow @ 7:00

  4. Rise
    1:38 pm November 1, 2015 Permalink

    I am showing women’s college soccer on SEC network and nothing on SEC alternate. SEC network would make more money showing UK basketball than women’s soccer.

  5. Cousins Fake Tooth
    1:43 pm November 1, 2015 Permalink

    email/call SEC network, facebook, whatever and tell them to put the game on TV! Had to do it last year and it worked

    • WeareBBN
      7:15 pm November 1, 2015 Permalink

      It is the SEC tourney so they probably have to show the soccer games by contract. One would think they will show the basketball game at some point just not live.

  6. JeffC
    1:51 pm November 1, 2015 Permalink

    The game is on ESPN site listed @ 7:00 on SEC Network Alternate +

  7. UKBasketballLive
    2:37 pm November 1, 2015 Permalink

    Just to make this clear… Anytime you see a “+” next to SEC Network that means ONLINE ONLY! The only way to get this to change is by calling the SEC Network and ESPN to complain. However, I think there are still tons of people out there thinking it is already going to be aired on TV on an alternate SEC Network channel… which is not true. Like I said, anytime it say has a plus sign when talking about the SEC Network, that is code for online only.

    So yeah, call and complain and get them to air it like BBN did for Big Blue Madness 2014.

    • ibescootch
      2:05 am November 2, 2015 Permalink

      And I’m sure we can watch it streaming on as well, right? 🙂

      I donate every month, and everyone else should as well! Even if it’s $5. It really is one of the best UK basketball and football streaming resources out there. Thanks for everything you do!

  8. El Gato Loco
    3:07 pm November 1, 2015 Permalink

    >> SEC network would make more money showing UK basketball than women’s soccer.<<

    Might wanna set your time-machine to 2015, bud. Women's Soccer USA won the World Cup. Soccer is HUGE across the rest of 'Murka. Including women's. Most major MLS teams also have women's teams, which do VERY well in their cities.

    You may think UK vs Ottowa would "make more money" but guess what– not
    everyone in 'Murka lives like God is a Dollar. Can I get a GOOOOOOOOOAL and an AMEN?!

    • Randy
      3:52 pm November 1, 2015 Permalink

      Haha more people would tune in to watch UK eat their pre game meal than to watch women’s soccer.

  9. Soccersux
    3:44 pm November 1, 2015 Permalink

    Soccer sux…no one watches that…

  10. Leuther
    6:57 pm November 1, 2015 Permalink

    The start of a welcome reprieve from Ky football…

    • Priceless
      7:18 pm November 1, 2015 Permalink

      Yet we get no reprieve from Leuthers’ stupid comments.
      Leuther what are your “sources” saying about maybe getting the bball game on SEC Network.

    • Leuther
      9:58 pm November 1, 2015 Permalink

      Yep. We get to watch the Cats curb-stomp the Cards again at Rupp this year!!! 🙂