I just came from a “alternate” timeline where Jodie Meeks graces is with his presence in 2010… Here a series of breakdowns that shows us what that season looks like and the domino effect that follows:
We are going to start our “What If” history at the beginning of the Cal Era… In 2009-2010:
G: John Wall
G: Eric Bledsoe
G: Jodie Meeks
Bench: Orton Dodson Stevenson
Regular Season: Cats bust out the gate, looking like one of the best teams in the country. They set the college basketball world on fire by starting 15-0 in Out of Conference play, beating every team by double digits. With the speed and excitement of John Wall, endless scoring by senior Jodie Meeks and Boogie Cousins dominating down low, teams just couldn’t keep up. Kentucky found themselves ranked #1 in the country by early January and (minus a small scare in Knoxville) cruised to an undefeated regular season.
SEC Tournament: Entering post season at 31-0, they would cruise through the SEC Tournament. Beating Alabama (86-64), Tennessee (78-42) and Mississippi St (72-58) to enter March Madness at 34-0
Being undefeated, Kentucky was awarded the #1 overall seed (Midwest)
Round 1: Lehigh
Kentucky starts March madness off with a bang, dominating Lehigh from start to finish. Eric Bledsoe scores 24 points and leads Kentucky to a 108-64 win.
Round 2: Northern Iowa
Kentucky starts out hot, leading by as much as 20 in the first half. NIUs hot shooting, cuts the lead back to 8 with 4:00 remaining, until Wall takes over and puts the game away easily. Kentucky wins 80-67.
Sweet 16: Michigan St
Calipari vs Izzo. Blue blood vs blue blood. The first half was a rock fight, Kentucky unable to get any shots to fall, going into halftime down 6. In the 2nd half, Meeks takes over, scoring 26 points and going 5-7 from 3 in the final 20 min. Kentucky holds on to win 65-60.
Elite 8: Tennessee
They say it’s tough to beat a team twice, let alone 4 times. The old adage proved true. Kentucky trailed by as many as 10 points, before they were able to find the offense. Cousins flirted with a triple double, while wall scored 22 points in a 72-70 OT win.
Final Four: Butler
Kentucky entering their first Final Four in 12 years. The mighty undefeated Kentucky Wildcats take on underdog Butler, a true David vs Goliath. It was obvious early on, Butler came to play and UK couldn’t sleep walk through this one. Back and fourth game, came down to the final minuets, when Wall and Meeks knocked down some late free throws to put the Bulldogs away. 68-64
Good vs Evil, Right vs Wrong, Angels vs Demons. Few things in life match up the way Duke and UK do for a National Championship. The game started out in a way that would have put 92 to shame, both teams going into half tied 42-42. Second half started much the same, but a 4 min stretch of Cousins dominating the paint was the difference maker. Cats were able to pull away and hold on to win 72-60. Completing the perfect season.
Kentucky won #8, finishing 40-0. Four players entered the draft.
John Wall: #1 (Washington Wizards)
DeMarcus Cousins: #5 (Sacramento Kings)
Jodie Meeks: #12 (Memphis Grizzlies)
Patrick Patterson: #14 (Houston Rockets)
Stay tuned for 2010-2011