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Texas Longhorns 51 at Kentucky 63: Post Game Celebration

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John Calipari wanted a test, and he absolutely got one from Texas.

Mark Zerof-USA TODAY Sports

Welcome to the post-game celebration thread. We are celebrating a very hard-won victory against a tough, big, and determined Texas Longhorns team that went toe-to-toe with the Wildcats, and just didn’t quite have enough. The score was much more lopsided than the game, as it turned out, due to fouls at garbage time.

Really nice try by the Longhorns, and they came a lot closer to getting this one that most people who just read the box score and headlines will realize. You have to wonder what Texas would have done with Isaiah Taylor in the game. Almost certainly, they would’ve had fewer turnovers and more pressure on offense. Having said that, neither Texas nor Kentucky played great games offensively, but both were very good defensively.

Kentucky was an offensive mess all night, and I have never seen the like of struggles shooting the ball. Kentucky didn’t make their first three until late in the second half, and went 1-12 in the game. I warned you in the game thread that if Kentucky struggled from three, this game would be close.

Stats

Observations

  • Yes, Willie Cauley-Stein will get the game ball, and it isn’t even close. Might as well get that out of the way so those of you that care won’t sweat me trying to go against the grain.

  • I don’t have to say that shooting 37.5% is not a pretty way to win games. The shooting for both teams was ugly, and the game was a mud-wrestling match.

  • I thought the officials were absolutely loathsome. I don’t think either team got an advantage from them, but they made the game extremely hard to watch.

  • In the end, Kentucky’s depth really took a toll. Texas’ big men were sucking air at the end, and God knows, you can hardly blame them.

  • Texas has some really excellent talent, and when they get Taylor back, I’m not sure I’d want a rematch. Nah, that’s a lie — I’d welcome it. Just kidding.

  • 51 personal fouls in this game. ugh.

  • I thought Kentucky’s guard play was really off, and the front court was awful in the first half, allowing Texas to gobble up rebounds at a frightful clip. I have no idea how Kentucky went into the locker room tied at the half. That had to frustrate Rick Barnes to no end.

  • Some weird lineups tonight, and the platoon system did not, as we all previously thought, survive contact with significant adversity.

  • Kentucky’s offense was rushed all night. I think Calipari wanted them to keep the game moving as fast as possible to fatigue Texas, and it worked. It just took longer than I thought it would.

I don’t know about you, but I’m going to basically ignore the stats and look only at the bottom line. Yes, tomorrow I’ll dissect the stats like I always do, and lament the missed shots and turnovers, etc, because that is what we do here. If that bothers you, just skip the postmortem and let the basketball geeks have their own little sandbox to play in.

But I’m thrilled with this win, and I’ll bet you are as well. 8-0, baby, officially better than 2011-12!