#22 Kentucky v. DePaul
A pretty good game after Kentucky jumped out to an 18-7 lead, but DePaul hung in and fought back. Kentucky ended up winning 87-81 after Ramel Bradley and Bobby Perry stepped in and took charges with under 1:11 left in the game. We’ve been hearing about how great Kentucky’s junior center Randolph Morris is for three years now, after tonight I can finally believe it. The kid owned the game early on and finished with 20 points and nine rebounds. The best part about Morris is the fact that he was the third best player on his AAU team. He was a member of the Atlanta Celtics with Dwight Howard and Josh Smith. Can you imagine the team full of 6’2 white guys they had to play in the first round of every AAU tournament? The poor kids. It was probably a bunch of guy who looked like Derek Raivio and Drew Neitzel, and fired themselves up before the game and actually believed they had a chance.
Anyway, Kentucky looked pretty solid but they gave up too many points to an average DePaul team. They let the Blue Demons get to the hoop far too much on dribble penetration and it was really funny watching Tubby Smith flip out all game. I think that guy’s head is going to explode at some point this season. My assessment of the Wildcats is that they have some great pieces in Morris, Ramel Bradley (who can shoot the lights out) and if Joe Crawford can cut down on the fouls, he will be a great point guard in Tubby’s system. Crawford, Morris and Bradley are all juniors, so they’ve been around and they know what their coach expects. If they don’t finish second in the SEC (behind Florida) it will be a disappointment.
DePaul needs to just take the approach of ‘wait till next year’ when they welcome the nation’s 12th ranked recruiting class, including 5-star guard Darquavis Tucker and 4-star forward Nayal Koshwal. They have some nice players now but they don’t play like a team, the play like a bunch of guys running a pickup game. They should get better, but right now they’re just average.
#5 UCLA v. Chaminade
Is it just me, or should Chaminade’s coach Matt Mahar have gone Denny Green after this game and acted like he was pissed that his team lost 88-63? To be truthful, I didn’t pay much attention to this game, I spent most of this one looking around the gym for famous people, attractive UCLA co-eds and tried to see if Bill Raftery was sipping out of a flask during timeouts. He did keep wiping his face with a towel, so I’m gonna go ahead and assume it was soaked in ether.
UCLA is good, all I know about this one is that they scored a lot and Chaminade took a lot of three’s. I’m really looking forward to UCLA/Kentucky tomorrow because the Bruins have great perimeter players in Arron Afflalo, Darren Collison and Josh Shipp, while the Wildcats will have the advantage in the post. This will be the game to watch tomorrow night, but the Memphis/Georgia Tech game will a good one too, simply because both teams are fast and athletic, so it should be entertaining.
Alright I’m off to hit the town and then wake up at 8:30 a.m. local time for the first game tomorrow. Tomorrow’s post will be one long one, which I’ll update throughout the day.