I had a good feeling that the Kentucky Wildcats would handle their business against the Missouri Tigers at Rupp Arena last night, but I was again surprised at the level of play that this team continues to elevate to each time they compete.
Here are my quick takeaways from the game:
- Derek Willis had a career-high 18 points and notched 12 rebounds to give him another double-double. He continues to be everything that team was missing in their early SEC slump.
- Skal Labissiere looked as comfortable scoring the basketball as we have seen him since the early part of the season. But no rebounds? Like John Calipari said, he can't play if he won't rebound. That's all about effort.
- Isaiah Briscoe was a revelation on defense and continues to find his shooting touch. But most impressive was that he went 5-6 from the line. If he has turned the corner of that part of his game, watch out.
- What can I say about Tyler Ulis that hasn't been said? He's brilliant.
- Even with Jamal Murray struggling in the first half, the team was able to score at will on Mizzou.
- This was a game where the team needed to show up and give 100% effort for the entire game and that's exactly what happened. They put their foot on the gas at the tip and never let up. That hasn't always been the case. Great tune up before Kansas.
Missouri head coach Kim Anderson said he believes his team was shell shocked in the early going. Said it was like last year's game at Rupp.— CoachCal.com (@CoachCalDotCom) January 28, 2016
Calipari, "I screwed him (Skal) up trying to make him Karl Towns."— Curtis Burch (@curtisburch) January 28, 2016
Calipari says Tyler Ulis and Isaiah Briscoe have brought the Breakfast Club back pic.twitter.com/8P70k5hj1s— Tyler Thompson (@MrsTylerKSR) January 28, 2016