That was a disappointing first half, although we do have to note one thing, in fairness — Kentucky's transition defense was much better. Their half-court defense, not so much. Not only that, but Kentucky really abused their opportunities at the free throw line.
Here are the stats from the first half:
What was most disappointing in the first half was the fact that Kentucky allowed Ole Miss to be competitive on the offensive glass. That was partially due to the switching defense they were employing to guard Marshall Henderson, which often drew Julius Randle away from the glass. Also annoyingly, Kentucky missed many wide-open looks, particularly James Young.
Overall, though, Kentucky is, as the old saying goes, dancin' with who brung 'em. They are relentlessly attacking the rim, getting to the line, and piling up fouls on the Rebels. They had some good and bad offensive possessions, but defensively, I think Kentucky was just a little out of sync. They need to do better in the second.
I'd be remiss if I didn't mention what a good half Willie Cauley-Stein had. He really gave us a lift, and if he continues playing well, I like our chances.