Every college basketball team is unique in some ways. Obviously the roster changes in some ways each season but who takes on leadership roles, steps up to the plate, etc. can affect the differences in teams. With that said, at Kentucky we are constantly comparing one team to the next. Was the 2012 team as good as the 1996 team? Things like that.
This upcoming basketball season is going to be very interesting. We really don’t know what kind of team you are going to see. It obviously appears, on paper, to be a guard-oriented team. They could potentially play very fast. But there is some skill at the big man positions too. I wonder if you think this year’s team could potentially look much like any of Cal’s other teams.
I have listed what I think are some of the top characteristics of each of Calipari’s first 6 teams, as well as the trends as the season went along. Can you see this team, from what you know, looking like any of these teams?
Characteristics: Elite Starting 5, Short Bench, Incredible Speed, Shaky Shooting, Star Power
Season Trend: Non-Conference Ugly Wins, Flashes of Brilliance Early, Consistently Better as Season Progressed, Peaked in March, Weakness Exposed in Tournament
Characteristics: Scrappy, Young, Short Bench, Clear Leader/Go-to Guy
Season Trend: Inconsistent Beginning, Struggled to Win Close Games, Found Leader/Star, Roles Began to Form, Peaked in March, Surprise Run to Final Four
Characteristics: Great Mix of Young and Old, Methodical Offense, Suffocating Defense, Superstar Center
Season Trend: Fast Start, Dominating Majority of Games, Very Little Drama, Clearly Best Team
Characteristics: Offensively Challenged, No Identity, Injury Derailed Season, Lack of Leadership
Season Trend: Season Opening Promise, Quickly Struggled, Never Got Rhythm, Collasped at End of Season
Characteristics: Very Young, Talented, Youthful Mistakes
Season Trend: Huge Expectations, Offensive Struggles Early, Road Game Woes, Turned Corner in March, Surprise NCAA Run
Characteristics: Incredible Depth, Toughness, Suffocating Defense
Season Trend: Dominated Throughout Season, Weakness Exposed at Final Four