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GAMETIME: Cats bucking Broncos?

Kentucky gets to down-shift a little tonight with a home game against Santa Clara, one of the WCC's better teams. The Broncos already own wins over Stanford and Utah, and played Nevada very closely, so you know this won't be a Mississippi Valley State situation.

The Cats are saying the right things, but it's always tough coming off those rivalry games. Luckily, unlike last year, the defense seems to be starting to come together nicely, enabling the team to keep from re-learning all elements of basketball every time out.

The Broncos are a stout inside team, as Trez so carefully noted earlier, but also have some decent shooting from the outside, so maintaining focus is going to be key.

Kentucky wants to get on a roll in these four games before the SEC season starts. A favorable first few SEC games (relatively speaking) means if the Cats can give some time to fine-tuning the offense over the next few weeks, they could be well set up against the Murderer's Row of Georgia, Tennessee, Florida and the like come February.

What to look for:
* Gimme Morris: UK's blossoming All-American was a no-show on Saturday at Freedom Hall. Despite the eye-rolling from the nosebleeds, this was as much to do with BS officiating as it was with some sort of Morris regression. That said, Randy clearly has concentration lapses on the court, and he needs to learn that he has to go 100% all the time to reach his potential.

* Freshmeat?: Derrick Jasper has impressed as a starter, Jodie Meeks poured in 18 to beat Louisville. Who will star for the youngsters against the holiday schedule? A beefed-up Perry Stevenson would be a big help come SEC time.

* Chic Razor: Tuesday could be the debut of Alaskan freshman Ramon Harris, the mid-year signee Tubby Smith is thinking of redshirting. Recent comments suggest Smith thinks the man called "Razor" could be helpful this season with Jared Carter sidelined. If he wants to play him at all, what better time than right away?

Probable starting lineups

SG: Ramel Bradley, Jr., Brooklyn, NY, 12.7 ppg
3G: Joe Crawford, Jr., Detroit, MI, 13.1 ppg
PG: Derrick Jasper, Fr., Paso Robles, CA, 3.4 ppg
SF: Bobby Perry, Sr., Durham, NC, 7.6 ppg
C: Randolph Morris, Jr., Atlanta, GA, 15.4 ppg

Bench rotation:
F Perry Stevenson, F Sheray Thomas, F Ramon Harris, C Lukasz Obrzut, G Jodie Meeks, G Michael Porter

Santa Clara
PG: Danny Pariseau, 5'11", Sr., 10.5 ppg
SG: Brody Angley, 5'11", Jr., 8.5 ppg
SF: John Bryant, 6'10", So., 9.1 ppg
F: Mitch Henke, 6'7", Jr., 7.6 ppg
C: Sean Dennison, 6'11", Sr., 11.2 ppg

Bench rotation:
C Josh Higgins, G Calvin Johnson, G Brandon Rohe, G Jonathan Gunderson, G Scott Dougherty, F Tristan Parham

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