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Kentucky (10) 70 @ Georgia 77: Postmortem

This is going to be short, because there is not much to say.

Congratulations to the Georgia Bulldogs.  The Bulldogs played an outstanding game.  They executed their game plan perfectly, and deserve credit for a truly amazing effort.  A poor free-throw shooting team, the Bulldogs made almost all their attempts from the charity stripe, and that enabled them to win the game more than any other single element.  Their normal percentage would likely have resulted in a Kentucky win.

It is a hallmark of bad sportsmanship to complain about the officiating, particularly on the road.  This game is an exception.  The officiating was so blatantly one-sided as to be worthy of memory, and I will never in my lifetime forget this contest.  It will forever be cited as an example of unacceptably poor officiating, and memorialized with a nickname to be decided later. 

I am confident that the officials thought that they were making the right calls, but if they did, I volunteer to pay for a collective visit for all of them to my ophthalmologist.  Otherwise, I wish for them all to resign in disgrace.  I expect to get satisfaction on neither suggestion, however.  For those of you who have read me on a consistent basis, mark this down -- this may be the first time I have ever complained bitterly about officiating in a postmortem, and hopefully it will be the very last.

All that aside, the officials were not the biggest reason for this loss.  The biggest reason was the utter inability of the Wildcats to make wide open shots, and the strong defensive effort by Georgia.  Some of the shots were challenged, to be sure, but UK has made those kinds of looks all year, particularly on the inside.  Tonight, every shot seemed to find the back of the rim, or get so much iron it did not go in.  I guess it happens to the best teams, but it is really frustrating when it happens to yours.


Another thing that caused us trouble was the inability to guard the flex offense.  Georgia got more good looks from 10 feet and in than any team we have faced this year.  To their credit, Georgia never did try to make threes against the 'Cats.  Instead, they just kept going inside over and over again, and making tough, challenged shots as well as the inevitable easy one.

I offer no superlatives in this game for Kentucky.  None.  Kentucky did not play well, and I don't feel like patting anyone on the back.  Georgia deserves significant praise, particularly coach Mark Fox, for executing a perfect game plan against the Wildcats.  Georgia was simply outstanding, and I am very impressed by what they did against us.  If they can continue to play this well, the Dawgs may well contend for an outright SEC championship. Make no mistake, they were plenty good enough to beat us today even without the irrational and ridiculous help they got from the officials.  Sadly, those worthies cast a pall upon an otherwise awesome performance by the Dawgs for anyone who watched this game, and neither Georgia nor Kentucky deserved that.

In the end, I am angry about the loss, but losses are going to happen in SEC play on the road.  Hopefully, they don't happen too frequently.