Wednesday, December 10, 2014

Kentucky 82 - 49 E. Kentucky (No. 2,149)

I didn't see this game, so I only have a few comments:

1.  Here's the score by quarters.  Since the game started at 5 P.M. Central, I think it was great of UK to wrap things up before folks in Western Kentucky had to be at 6 o'clock church services:

1st:  UK 20, EKU 12
2d:  UK 21, EKU 2 (UK up 41-14 at the half)
3d:  EKU 19, UK 15 (UK up 56-33 with 10 minutes to go)
4th:  UK 26, EKU 16 (UK wins 82-49)

2.  Through nine games, UK has the nation's third-most efficient offense, and its most efficient defense.

3.  There are only 10 undefeated teams left:  Kentucky, Duke, Virginia, Louisville, Villanova, Arizona, Washington, Northern Iowa, Texas Christian, and Colorado State.

4.  UK went 3-13 from three-point range, and again forced Tom Leach to wait until the game was almost over before keeping the team's ancient three-point streak alive.  So far, UK is shooting only 29.5 percent from three-point range (278th in the country) and only 65.8 percent at the line (247th in the country).  Those are the team's two big weaknesses so far.

5.  The Cats take only 27.9 percent of their shots from beyond the arc -- they rank 305th in the nation in that category.  So at least they know that's not a good shot for them.

6.  But UK's guards have been more effective than their shooting statistics would suggest.  Last year the Cats were 154th in offensive turnover percentage, and 303d in defensive turnover percentage.  In other words, the Cats were mediocre when it came to their own turnovers, and they were not turning over the other teams very much at all.  This year, the Cats are 52d in offensive turnover percentage (a big improvement), and 7th in defensive turnover percentage.  Our defense is now creating almost as many turnovers as Louisville's defense.  (The Cards are 4th in defensive turnover percentage).  That's a huge improvement, and is a big reason the Cats have had so many blowouts this year.

7.  Last weekend was the third time this season that UK played games on Friday and Sunday.  Normally, UK rarely plays on Friday or Sunday.  But of course, Friday/Sunday games are very common in the NCAA Tournament, so it makes sense for the Cats to be preparing for that combination.

8.  Here's UK's record against the four former OVC members in the Commonwealth:  Eastern Kentucky (10-0), Morehead State (10-0), Murray State (0-0), and Western Kentucky (4-2).

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