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Kentucky Wildcats Escape The LSU Tigers, 71-69

It's times like these that make college basketball the most exciting sport around.

Derick E. Hingle-USA TODAY Sports

Twenty-four and zero, ladies and gentlemen of the Big Blue Nation. The Kentucky Wildcats escaped the LSU Tigers in Baton Rouge by once again being bigger than than the moment. I can’t remember how many Kentucky teams I have watched quail in situations like this, and could be forgiven for doing so. Not this team. Not this year.

LSU deserves a lot of credit for hanging in, and going on that huge run late in the second half. That was impressive, winning basketball, and 95 times out of 100, the effort LSU gave to get a six point lead late wins the basketball game. Kentucky showed why they are great by being a 5 percenter.

Final Stats

Observations

  • This was an incredibly up-and-down game for Kentucky. They played great in stretches, and awful in stretches. They were hot. They were cold. They did a lot of things that were highlights, and a lot of them that were "teachable moments." And so, my life is shortened by at least one year.

  • Kentucky hopefully learned that you cannot celebrate a win at the 8-minute mark in the second half. Even if 90% of teams fall apart and are trampled, 10% don’t. This was another case of Kentucky not respecting their opponent.

  • When you have a postgame thread where you can’t fit in all the criticism and all the praise, you know you have to just put it off until your emotions come under control. So I will.

  • Happy birthday, Coach Cal. How do you like your present?

  • Young players make dumb mistakes, and great plays, often in the same minute.

  • Will Kentucky remember, and I know we all hope they do, that crushing teams into a fine powder, rolling them up and smoking them is much more fun than letting them get back into the game?

  • Both teams tightened up the turnovers in the second half.

  • The blocks are back, and against a huge team.

  • 3-point field goal shooting was loathsome.

I have a lot more to say, but it will have to come in the postmortem. I have to eat before I go into a coma and require hospitalization. Talk about it if you have finally been able to get down from the roof, or defibrillated yourself back to consciousness. I’ll have more in the postmortem tomorrow.