Flashback to November 12th to UK's first game against East Tennessee State.With Enes Kanter not being able to play this season, everyone became worried about not having an inside presence that can score but really clean up on the boards.
Now would you believe that this team is 25th in the nation in rebounding?
With our 12-2 record we have only been out rebounded three times, and two of those times came in our losses. In the UConn game Kentucky was outrebounded 32-29, as we also let them shoot 57% percent from the field(also 58% from 3). At North Carolina we were outdone on the boards 43-39 with the Tar Heels shooting 41% from the field. Now my point isn't that if we get more boards we win because we actually were also out rebounded by Mississippi Valley State 41-37 but yet we held them to 32% from the field.( yet with dead ball rebounds included we actually out did the Devils.) As a team we average 40.5 rebounds a game and thats withaveraging 12.85 offensive boards. On average our opponents are getting a total of 32.1 boards with 10.5 on the offensive glass. When we are getting about 28 defensive boards shows that our defense and really our interior defense has stepped up because we are forcing difficult shots and keeping them off the glass for second chance points. Jorts can switches well on the screen plays and Liggins has shut down many teams top scorer. Opponents are only averaging 38 fg% and 31% from 3. Harrellson as grown to something we could have never imagined, but knew we needed and Terrence Jones plays like a four when it comes to defense and rebounds but plays like a three on the offensive side. Theyboth average a little over 9 rebounds a game.
Plus with theteam shooting 47% fg and 41% 3fg and then when we do miss we are getting 13 offensive boards a game we are getting many second chance oppurtunities which helps us really put up the points.
But when Kentucky gets 40 boards in a game it is a stat that shows the interior defense is exactly where it needs to be and there are no easy shots. So Kanter who? Breathe easy and be thankful for Josh Harrellson