The Cats head to South Carolina for the 9 pm weeknight game this week. Hopefully we can get a win so any missed sleep will be well worth it. Besides, in recent memory the trips to Colonial Life Arena have proven to be must see TV. Calipari’s ejection in 2013 was one of my all-time favorite moments. The Ulis led squad responded to win big. Will we see intensity like this Tuesday?
The Gamecocks are 11-6 and coming off a 7 point victory over Georgia on Saturday. Adding a Final Four to their resume last season, USC always presents a difficult match up for Kentucky. Frank Martin is one intense coach. To be honest, he scares me. But his methods prove to be effective. We might as well keep the “toughness” theme going because that will be a requirement for victory.
Chris Silva is the leading scorer for USC at 14 points a game with nearly 8 boards. It will be really nice to see improvement in our inconsistent defense. Straight line drives to the basket are killing us. Wenyen and Sasha have been providing some much needed defensive energy. Now its time for the other guys to follow.
South Carlolina has been in the news recently for bringing on former Louisville freshman Brian Bowen. He will not be eligible to play Tuesday. He may never be eligible to play. But in an interesting twist of fate he ends up in the SEC. See you one day.
Many hoops fans in the state of South Carlina are probably less concerned about this game and more focused on the future. The future being the possibility of signing phenom Zion Williamson on Saturday.
Keys for UK:
1. Toughness. Frank Martin will accept nothing less from his team. So the Cats much match the effort on the road.
2. Defense. We need 40 minutes of solid fundamental defense. No easy baskets or break downs.
3. Keep the Shai train rolling. Feels great having the ball in the hands of a play-maker like Shai. His progression has been a joy to watch unfold. If it continues at this pace he may take us to the promiseland.
UK – 75
USC – 71