The Kentucky Wildcats will be back in Rupp Arena Tuesday night for a date with the Boston University Terriers of the Patriot League.
Kentucky enters this game now ranked as the No. 1 team in both major college basketball polls following their sweep of No. 4 Duke and Wright State last week. There's really no question that the Wildcats are one of, if not the best, teams in America right now, especially after a host of top-25 teams have lost in the first two weeks of the regular season.
The 'Cats will look to avoid becoming the latest top-25 team to fall when Boston comes to Lexington. The Terriers enter this game at 2-2 on the season after notching a 78-66 victory at South Florida on Saturday night as part of the Basketball Hall of Fame Classic. That came following a 90-76 loss at NJIT on Thursday.
Senior guard John Papale finished with 17 points vs. the Bulls and is the team's leading scorer at 17.8 points per game. He scored 21 twice in the win over Albany and loss at NJIT. Freshman guard Kyle Foreman is the team's leading assist man at 5.8 dimes per contest.
Senior forward Nathan Dieudonne is the team's leading rebounder at 6.8 boards per game while standing at just 6-7 and 235 pounds. The Terriers have just two starters over 6-3 with fellow starting forward Justin Alston standing at 6-8 and 230 pounds.
In other words, this is a game the UK bigs should have their way and make a big impact, Skal Labissiere in particular. The freshman phenom has had a hot-and-cold start to this season, scoring double digits just twice while failing to grab more than five rebounds in any game.
He's too good of a player to not be dominating some of these games more on the offensive and defensive end, though Skal did look mighty impressive during his 26-point performance in an 87-57 win over a quality NJIT team.
As for the Terriers, they opened the year with a hard-fought 87-84 overtime loss to Northeastern before rebounding with a 69-64 victory over three-time defending America East champion Albany. Led by 5th-year head coach Joe Jones, BU is coming off a 13-17 (9-9 PL) season in which it finished .500 or greater in conference play for 15th straight season. Jones is seeking his third postseason appearance after reaching the 2013 CIT and 2014 NIT.
The Terriers are an experienced veteran team that won't be afraid of playing under the bright lights of Rupp Arena. They return every scholarship athlete for the second time in three seasons. The first occurrence came in 2013-14 as a first-year member in the Patriot League. That year, BU went 24-11 and 15-3 in league play to claim the program’s first conference regular-season title since 2004. This year, the Terriers were predicted to finish third in league play in the Patriot League preseason poll.
This matchup with Boston is part of the Hoophall Miami Invitational, which continues on Friday when UK heads down to South Beach for a matchup with Orlando Antigua's South Florida Bulls.
Here is everything you'll need to watch and follow Kentucky vs Boston.
Boston U (2-2) at Kentucky Wildcats (4-0)
When: Tuesday, November 24th
Location: Rupp Arena in Lexington, KY
Game Time: 9:00 pm ET
TV: SEC Network
Rosters: Boston Roster; Kentucky Roster
Online Stream: Watch ESPN
Radio: UK Radio Network (Tom Leach, Mike Pratt)
Odds: Kentucky opened as a 24-point favorite, per Odds Shark, but is only a 7-point favorite now, per Vegas Insider. that's a really strange line, so we'll be monitoring it to see if there's anything with that. Boston is good, but not good enough that UK should not even be a double-digit favorite.
Projected Boston Starters
G - Kyle Foreman, 6-1 170 lbs
G - John Papale 6-3, 195 lbs
G - Cheddi Mosely 6-3, 190 lbs
F - Nathan Dieudonne 6-7, 235 lbs
F - Justin Alston 6-8, 230 lbs
Projected Kentucky Starters
G - Tyler Ulis, 5-9, 160 lbs
G - Isaiah Briscoe, 6-3, 202 lbs
G - Jamal Murray, 6-4, 207 lbs
F - Marcus Lee, 6-9, 224 lbs
F - Skal Labissiere, 6-11, 225 lbs