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BTI’s Rants and Ramblings: Which Team Will the 2015-16 Cats Resemble?

Kevin Jairaj-USA TODAY Sports

Kevin Jairaj-USA TODAY Sports

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?

2009-10
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

2010-11
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

2011-12
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

2012-13
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

2013-14
Characteristics: Very Young, Talented, Youthful Mistakes
Season Trend: Huge Expectations, Offensive Struggles Early, Road Game Woes, Turned Corner in March, Surprise NCAA Run

2015-16
Characteristics: Incredible Depth, Toughness, Suffocating Defense
Season Trend: Dominated Throughout Season, Weakness Exposed at Final Four

Article written by Bryan the Intern

23 Comments for BTI’s Rants and Ramblings: Which Team Will the 2015-16 Cats Resemble?



  1. d
    9:04 am June 30, 2015 Permalink

    typo on the last team. wrong years



  2. Catman4Life
    9:16 am June 30, 2015 Permalink

    I think that it looks like this:

    Characterisitics: Young, Talented, Suffocating Defense
    Season Trend: Offensive struggles early(finding out who we are), consistently dominant defensively, lose a game or two we shouldn’t, Peak in March & hang #9



  3. Jordan Williams
    9:20 am June 30, 2015 Permalink

    I think it just depends on how good Skal really is. If you compare them to the 2012 team:

    Ulis>Teague
    Murray=Lamb
    Briscoe<Gilchrist
    Poythress=Jones
    Skal<Davis

    And the bench is comparable as well.



    • UK Freshmen
      10:48 am June 30, 2015 Permalink

      Haha. Poythress equals Jones. I want what you’re smoking.



    • Dude
      11:13 am June 30, 2015 Permalink

      But I thought Louisville fans thought TJones sucked, and hated that dude? LOL



    • Jordan
      3:02 pm June 30, 2015 Permalink

      Whose the Louisville fan here?



    • t_f_licker
      5:32 pm June 30, 2015 Permalink

      Some folks have Murray going 3 in the way too early mock draft for 2016. I would say Murray a bit > than Lamb



    • RealCat
      5:52 pm June 30, 2015 Permalink

      Thats the worst comparison ever. That team was top 5 best teams in school history. Jones was a beast and played within his skill set Alex doesn’t even know his skill set besides dunking on someone and Murray is better all around than Lamb, not a lights out shooter but better at all other aspects. The real difference is you don’t have MKG, he was as vital as Davis. Plus who is gonna be big shot Miller when we need it this yr?



    • CatBlue in LR
      6:15 pm June 30, 2015 Permalink

      Murray is more explosive than Doron, from what I’ve seen; may end up being a little better. We’ll see.



  4. Tomas
    9:22 am June 30, 2015 Permalink

    I honestly think this team will loos most like the 2012-2013 team. Not a deep bench and very young play a lot of small ball but a huge difference being toughness at the PG spot and way more talent. Also this team will have more defined leaders with Poythress being a Junior and Ulis being an overall badass. I think they will struggle offensively at times during the season and rely on individual talent to get them through those struggles which is basically what we did with Archie Goodwin during that year. Except Murray and Briscoe are better than Goodwin, and Skal is better offensively than Nerlens.



    • t_f_licker
      5:33 pm June 30, 2015 Permalink

      Much, much better team offensively than the 12-13 team.



  5. lexslamman
    9:22 am June 30, 2015 Permalink

    It reminds me a little of the 2010-2011 team, except for Skal and Lee bringing in more athleticism for their size.

    Also, I have to talk a little BTI smack – the 2009-2010 team lacked bench depth? Wasn’t that the team that had a bench of Orton, Stevenson, Harris, Dodson, Miller, Hood and Harrellson? How was that a “short bench?”



    • RBT
      10:02 am June 30, 2015 Permalink

      Orton never produced in college/NBA. Miller and Harrellson did not develop until the following season. While a fan favorite, Hood didn’t really add depth. Dodson was inconsistent. It was not a very good bench (by Cal’s standards).



    • CatBlue in LR
      6:19 pm June 30, 2015 Permalink

      Correction–that was Jorts’ senior year, the year he broke out.



  6. jame223
    10:26 am June 30, 2015 Permalink

    I think this team will be different from any other. Lot of depth at guard and very athletic down low. I think they play up-tempo and Murray is an elite scorer on the wing. Should be able to run the true dribble drive and hopefully get easy lobs to Skal, Poythress, and Lee when the guards are able to get into the paint. Should be a tough team with Ullis and Briscoe at guard since they are both hard nosed and from Chicago and NYC areas. Can’t wait to see them play.



    • J-Dub421
      11:27 am June 30, 2015 Permalink

      Don’t forget Charles Matthews, he’s also a Chicago boy who plays with toughness.



    • Ja
      12:20 pm June 30, 2015 Permalink

      Dis man is str8 off son



  7. UK Freshmen
    10:46 am June 30, 2015 Permalink

    Once again an easy reminder to wonder why Cal has won only one national championship.



    • Ha!
      11:12 am June 30, 2015 Permalink

      Why has Rick only been to three Final Fours and won one title in 14 YEARS at Louisville? He’s your Lord and Savior, the best coach your commuter school could get, and thats the best he can do? Lets keep in mind he’s lost 7 of 8 to Cal. That’s called “owned”.

      What a lot of Louisville trolls fail to remember too, is that one of Rick’s two titles came at KENTUCKY, not Louisville. Talk shit when you can do better than 6th historically (which was recently given to you because Indiana has been sucking for two decades. You should thank them).

      Thanks for visiting.



  8. Billy Mays
    12:17 pm June 30, 2015 Permalink

    What was the weakness exposed in the Final Four last year? That the guys are human and cant win every time?



    • Catamn4Life
      12:23 pm June 30, 2015 Permalink

      The weakness on the 2014-15 team was that on the same night we have one of our worst shooting performances, the referees screw up several momentum changing plays(the biggest being the shot clock violation that wasn’t called), thus leading to our first loss all year.



    • PhilUK18
      3:13 pm June 30, 2015 Permalink

      I was thinking the same thing, not really sure what weakness BTI was talking about. Then again, he does suck, so I’m not surprised that last bit made no sense.



    • t_f_licker
      5:35 pm June 30, 2015 Permalink

      Our weakness was that Cal likes to hold the ball when he’s up 4 with several minutes left to go instead of letting the kids play.