We have finally arrived at the 2009-10 UK basketball season opener! I'm opening this thread a few minutes early to get it warmed up for the big game.
Tonight, Kentucky welcomes Donnie Tyndall and his Morehead State Eagles into Rupp Arena for some basketball action. The particulars of this game are as follows, courtesy of UKAthletics.com:
More after the jump
Well, here we are, ladies and gentlemen of the Big Blue Nation -- at Game 1 of the John Calipari era. I personally have not been able to get a thing done all day for checking out the blog and thinking about the game. It's a bit ... less than satisfying that it isn't some pre-season tournament against a high-profile foe, but Donnie Tyndall and his daughter really captured my heart last year in the NCAA tournament, and I am really glad to be welcoming he and his team into Rupp Arena for a tilt with the new-look 'Cats.
I know it is natural for us to fret about games, particularly early season games with new players, but this Kentucky team, unlike some in recent years, has a truly overwhelming advantage in talent, size, and skill. Overwhelming, and I mean that in the most fundamental sense of the word.
It is not beyond possibility that UK could lose tonight. I remember well the Gardner-Webb debacle. But that was a different time, with a far, far less talented group and a far, far less accomplished coach. In effect, there is no rational comparison of then to now.
So in short, I expect Kentucky to dominate Morehead State tonight, and I will be most unhappy if they do not. The Eagles return six players from last year, but they lost quite a bit as well, and Morehead is not known recently for fast starts. This team is far better than either of the other two teams UK has faced to date, but by now, we should expect to see some progress, both in conditioning and in the DDM attack.
So enjoy the game, my friends, and welcome college basketball back to the Bluegrass!