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Would a win over Louisville make up for UK’s stumbles so far?


It hasn’t quite been the season many UK fans expected so far. Three losses have brought the unreal hype and expectations for this squad back to Earth, and for the first UK/Louisville game in several years, no one really knows what will happen on Saturday. Both the Cats and the Cards have looked great and terrible at times this season, making it very difficult to get a good read on the game.

Kentucky’s record in big games this season is not good, with their three losses happening on the three biggest stages thus far. Likewise, Louisville also fell during their only big test this season, to North Carolina in the Hall of Fame Tipoff Classic.

Here’s my question for you: if the Cats come out and beat the Cards Saturday, will it make up for all the stumbles so far this season?

survey solutions

In the comments, let us know how a win would change your expectations for this group, or, conversely, how damaging a loss would be to UK’s season.

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.

39 Comments for Would a win over Louisville make up for UK’s stumbles so far?

  1. MNCAT
    11:20 am December 26, 2013 Permalink


    • Elwood Blues
      1:07 pm December 26, 2013 Permalink

      No. Say we have the same start to the season, and instead of being #3 Louisville, our arch-rival, we play #3..Oklahoma St. for example. I can be willing to bet that either this poll would not even be asked or the results would be the majority “no”. Yeah, this game will be the most exciting thus far, but just because it’s a rival game doesn’t erase how crappy of a start (relatively) this team has had.

  2. Willis talkin bout..
    11:27 am December 26, 2013 Permalink

    I guess it help more than a loss….

  3. smokeydeb
    11:29 am December 26, 2013 Permalink

    A win versus loserville, will not bring back my expectations of going undefeated this season with the number one class. There is absolutely no reason for the cats to lose any game this year.This season has been an utter failure, thus far. Only a National natty come april will please me.

    • jpg
      12:12 pm December 26, 2013 Permalink

      You my friend, do not have a rational bone in your body.

    • Mark
      12:49 pm December 26, 2013 Permalink

      You must have been dropped a lot as a child or watched to much Alice and Wonderland.

  4. Riggo
    11:32 am December 26, 2013 Permalink

    It won’t change my expectations……but only confirm that good will always triumph over evil……..In some weird way….it will also confirm that pants should be worn around your waist and not around your knees.

  5. Brian
    11:33 am December 26, 2013 Permalink

    I voted yes, but regardless what happens against Louisville, my expectations at the beginning of the season were much better than having 3 losses following the Louisville game. That said, there is nothing you can do to change the past so we just need to keep improving moving forward. I had hoped this would be remembered as an all time great team and with 3+ losses I don’t see that happening, but the ultimate goal is winning the championship, and that remains an attainable goal. I just want to see them continuing to get better and hopefully they’ll be ready to make a long run when March rolls around.

  6. Lewis
    11:35 am December 26, 2013 Permalink

    Win or lose the most important part of the game is NCAA seeding. The game itself doesn’t make up for any stumbles, they are to be expected with such a young team.

    A win could provide the confidence necessary for the team to see the road ahead and what COULD be their path to a National Championship…we will just have to wait and see Saturday.

  7. Glen douglas
    11:37 am December 26, 2013 Permalink

    Definitely!! But as long as the Cats fight, I will be happy either way.

  8. Glen douglas
    11:37 am December 26, 2013 Permalink

    Definitely!! But as long as the Cats fight, I will be happy either way.:-)

  9. Hopefully
    11:39 am December 26, 2013 Permalink

    A win over Louisville, would probably give us a one seed if we didn’t lose for the rest of the season.
    Thats not very realistic though, we will lose at least 1 or 2 sec games so i think we will end up with a 2 or 3 seed.

    If we lose to UL, thats our last chance at a great quality win, in which case we will end up with 6 or 7 seed probably. This game is huge!

    My prediction: UK 75 UL 71

  10. Billy G
    11:40 am December 26, 2013 Permalink

    This is their last chance to gain any respect this season.

  11. Keightley's Ghost
    11:44 am December 26, 2013 Permalink

    Our Cats have not won a big game since MKG & AD brought home #8. That’s almost as long as its been since the football team won an SEC game. Cal could use a signature win to reignite the fan base, as well as boost the confidence of this young team. would love to see Randle and Young get excited about a great play others than their own. More we, less me and a little pressure defense, and I can see the Cats righting the ship going into conference play.

  12. realme
    11:44 am December 26, 2013 Permalink

    “I like you Tyler, but” why in the world would you use a picture from an artist that doesn’t even know what UK’s colors are? That is terrible.

  13. frank
    11:47 am December 26, 2013 Permalink

    Beating UL won’t change the fact this is going to be an 8-9 loss team that will be lucky to get to the second weekend of the NCAA tournament

  14. cappy
    11:50 am December 26, 2013 Permalink

    A win gives hope. A loss and u have to beat florida in sec play or have no quality wins. anymore losses in the sec. and it’s reminiscent of last season on a bigger scale. With that being said, I believe we kill UL and go undefeated in SEC.

  15. GoodEnough
    11:58 am December 26, 2013 Permalink

    Is Louisville even good? I mean they haven’t played anyone but UNC and they lost that game. So if we beat them, does it really say much? I don’t think so. I think we learned from each lost, and will only be able to prove what we learned against FL.

    • sammydog
      12:51 pm December 26, 2013 Permalink

      Huh….they are the defending national champions and have most of that team returning. They haven’t played anybody other than NC but they are experienced, tough minded, and playing great D. They have won by large margins and are clicking as a team. They are very good. How we play against them will be a good measuring stick.

  16. bigblue091812
    12:00 pm December 26, 2013 Permalink

    UK can have 5 losses and still receive a 2 or even maybe a 1 seed with so many other teams losing games. LOSERVILLE has more of an advantage than UK in this game because it’s a rival game for them not UK. The reason is simple, all but 3 players on their team listen all the time how they don’t measure up to UK, this will be the 3rd or 4th game against UK for most of them and the only players for UK who has even played LOSERVILLE once is WCS and Alex. It just isn’t a rival game for kids whose only been in Lexington for 6 months at the most, it’s not their fault it’s just the way it is. I still have confidence that this team comes together and runs very deep in the NCAA’s, I still feel we go to the final 4, give them time.

  17. Syrin
    12:00 pm December 26, 2013 Permalink

    This game is meaningless since here at UK our sites are set on national championships, not local rivalries. Otherwise we might as well be IU and print pictures of our U of L victory and trip to the Sweet Sixteen. I’ll take a December loss for 6 consecutive wins in late March,

  18. Raazoul
    12:01 pm December 26, 2013 Permalink

    You people are crazy. By “stumbled” so far you mean our starting 4 freshman and 1 sophomore hasn’t won 3 road games against top 20 teams? So our options are Stumble or 40-0? Should make for a miserable season every year. This team doesn’t have a bad loss. Our team hasn’t lost to bad teams, lost to good teams on the road by less than 5 points. We are fine people. Still one of the 10 best teams in the country and no team is great. Only a couple, including UK, can even become great. Just relax bandwagon fans…

  19. KevinM
    12:06 pm December 26, 2013 Permalink

    A win against Pitino brings back a lot of the optimism for this team.

    I really don’t expect a loss, but this team does not to be totally engaged yet.

    We’ll learn a lot this weekend.

  20. Delk for 3
    12:10 pm December 26, 2013 Permalink

    If we win this game — which I think we can — I will start to believe this team can become the team we want them to be. If we can get a win I will begin to feel confident that the national championship is well within our grasp. Beating Louisville is a big deal, because you are beating Rick Pitino and that is a big deal for any team. It’s not an easy thing to do.
    If we don’t win the game, I will still wonder if this team can even get past the second round.

  21. MtnCat
    12:10 pm December 26, 2013 Permalink

    A loss in December is just that, nothing.
    March and April is what matters.
    Be nice to down the Birds but in the scheme of what is important, who cares about Louisville?

    • jim
      1:21 pm December 26, 2013 Permalink

      Well, for one, if UK doesn’t win this game – it has few chances left at a quality win. But I guess “who cares”

  22. RICK
    12:19 pm December 26, 2013 Permalink

    Haven’t been disappionted with them so far this year. Think they have played pretty good. Lost to 3 good teams that could beat anyone this year. KSR has a problem of post like this one making fans think that we are dissapointed in our team and we aren’t. You guys are the only ones that thought we where going 40 and 0. So lets stop crying about 3 losses. BEAT THE CARDS.

  23. KellyB
    12:21 pm December 26, 2013 Permalink

    I don’t care what the state of our team is….you always have to beat them dirty birds!!!!

  24. jpg
    12:23 pm December 26, 2013 Permalink

    It has a major impact for UK! Even though it won’t kill this team, it is obvious UK needs a big win on it’s resume. UK lost to 3 top-25 teams this year due to a combination of free-throws, unforced turnovers, and not having that killer instinct.

    They need a big win because of the SEC is weak in the basketball department this season. If UK plays with energy/hustle, I see them winning this game. Their lack of effort down the stretch has killed UK this season (killer instinct). I do not think there will be an energy problem in this game, especially if the Rupp crowd brings it. This is not a win over UL, as much as it is a win that will help the team come tournament time.

    Go Cats!!

  25. roundball fool
    12:32 pm December 26, 2013 Permalink

    yes-it’s a signature win!

  26. Joe
    12:42 pm December 26, 2013 Permalink

    A loss in December is just that, nothing.
    March and April is what matters.

    That’s all very good and well, BUT…we heard this last year too. “Oh I wouldn’t want to play this team in March.” OK, it didn’t seem to scare Robert Morris.

    I know every year is different and this team isn’t last year’s team, BUT…having watched one train wreck, hearing similar words spoken now, really scares me.

    So yes, beating Louisville IS pretty darned important…otherwise I’m afraid it signals another year of disappointment and sub-par performance, for the caliber of team we have.

    Sooner or later, this team or any team has to “get it”…it would be nice to see this team get it, against Louisville and then not forget it the rest of the season.

    • jpg
      1:03 pm December 26, 2013 Permalink

      Bro, you need to start thinking before you write. UK was young last year, but the big factor in UK’s demise was the injury to Nerlens Noel! He was UK’s main cog. UK had a very shallow bench, so when a team has its best player go down, they will struggle.

      Most analysts were stating that UK would “get it” because they had gotten it the previous 3 seasons. The problem is, nobody could have foreseen Noels injury. This team is struggling because of unforced errors and hustle. They are learning that! Why do you think Cal schedules tough Non.Conf? He wants to throw them in the fire and take some lumps if they are not ready. To him, it is about March, and not about having a pretty 18-0 record because his team plays a bunch of patsies early on.

    • Joe
      1:54 pm December 26, 2013 Permalink

      jpg, we tanked because we lost Noel, yes, but we were not performing that well with him. he seemed to be the ONLY player who was playing to his potential. SURE, once he went down the season was thru…but the season wasn’t looking at that great prior to his loss. I would argue he was the difference between the NIT and the NCAA, but that last year’s team was not going to go very far in the NCAA, either.

      So, I get a little scared when I hear things like…”Blah, blah, wait until March.” That sounds a bit like whistling past the graveyard, to me, at least. Be glad to eat my words and say I worried for no good reason come March, but I have been down this road once before and I hope you’ll understand my concern, at least. It’s a bit like NY Jets fans, “Oh they turn it on at the end”….And quite often they did until they couldn’t.

  27. EasyE523
    2:16 pm December 26, 2013 Permalink

    Depends on how they win. I would honestly need a dominating performance at home in order for me to regain confidence that this team can do what all of BBN desires. If they get off to a slow start and have to claw back for a 2 point win I will continue to be a bit skeptical of their likelihood to pull everything together and fire on all cylinders come March. I understand they are young, but there have been some disturbing repetition of silly errors. As far as seeding goes, I don’t think #1 seed makes as much of a difference with this team. I would be more worried about them coming out flat as a #1 seed in their first big show, then having a chip on their should in the 2-5 range and realizing that they do have something to prove. Ultimately, they weren’t as ready as we thought they were, and I’m tired of hearing the word upside. I want to start hearing the phrase “well-oiled machine” by the time February starts rearing its head. I will never count them out as long as they make it into the tourney, but they have a whole new storyline to write now.

  28. MtnCat
    3:06 pm December 26, 2013 Permalink

    Louisville game is just another December tuneup, unless you live in Jefferson County, then it is the game of the year. Get over yourself.

  29. jmfatz47
    3:45 pm December 26, 2013 Permalink

    A win vs UL simply gives us a signature win. The win will happen at Rupp so it loses some luster so it will take a serious run in the SEC to land a #2 seed. If we can handle Florida twice that will help. We also need another team in the SEC to step it up and become a solid ranked team. If that happens, and we beat that x-factor team along with wins against UL and Florida 2x then we can make a case for a top seed assuming other teams stumble along the way as well. We really need other top five teams to lose some games as well to help our case.

  30. Mark
    3:46 pm December 26, 2013 Permalink

    Yes it would…. I don’t care what any of you say. The Tourny is the only thing more important than this game. CATS by 5!!!

  31. deer hunter
    6:22 pm December 26, 2013 Permalink

    I agree with what a poster above said.
    It depends on what transpires during the game. If we struggle and scrape out a 2 or 3 point win then I don’t feel much different than I do now. I always expect to win at Rupp no matter what. If we come out, punch them in the mouth, and pull away by 10 or 12 points then, yes, I’ll begin to think we’re starting do turn the corner.

  32. James LeeisBetterThanGrant
    1:56 am December 27, 2013 Permalink

    To denigrate your local rival is showing your lack of class and sportsmanship. Sound corny? Too bad, let’s just play ball and see who wins. I used to play a lot of ball and we just played hard and kept our mouths shut. Let your play do the talking. If we fouled, we called it on ourselves. If you lose, congratulate your opponent and try harder next time. Let’s raise the bar people. I don’t like trash talk. Root for your team, but retain some civility. Show the nation we Kentuckians know how to have a straight up, no nonsense, hard-played, but fair rivalry. Rise above the crap, Kentucky. Don’t drink the Matt Jones Kool-aid of hate. May the best team win!
    Louisville Troll.