Last year the Kentucky Wildcats took down the North Carolina Tar Heels in a thriller in the CBS Classic from Las Vegas. Malik Monk became a national star and the stage was set for a special season for Kentucky.
This time around, the marquee for the Cats vs. the UCLA Bruins isn’t as bright. Part of the reason is that the Bruins have underachieved at 8-3. Much of that is due to the fact that Steve Alford is without three freshmen that were expected to contribute minutes. LiAngelo Ball is no longer with the team while Jalen Hill and Cody Riley have been suspended for the rest of the season; all of this stemming from a shoplifting incident in China.
Another reason why the hype isn’t as big is that Kentucky has flown under the radar this season. Kentucky is 9-1, a top ten team with two lottery picks and John Calipari as the head coach, the national media has chosen to ignore the Cats for the most part.
The last time these two met the stakes couldn’t have been higher. It was in the Sweet 16 and it was the second battle between Lonzo Ball and De’Aaron Fox. Fox completely dominated the game and the Cats cruised to the Elite Eight.
A win today while all eyes are on New Orleans would do wonders for both teams going forward.
Be sure to tune into the UK post game show on ESPN 680 after the game is over for analysis and John Calipari’s press conference live with yours truly.
You can also stream using the iHearRadio app and Soundcloud.