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Kentucky Wildcats Morning Quickies: Kicking Off 2018 Edition

Kentucky falls a spot in the AP poll despite wins, and l’affaire de Benny Snell Jr. is not quite done.

NCAA Football: Music Bowl-Kentucky vs Northwestern Jim Brown-USA TODAY Sports

Good morning, ladies and gentlemen of the Big Blue Nation, and welcome to the first Tuesday Morning Quickies of 2018. I feel a year older and… well, a year older.

Today’s discussion section of the Quickies will be a quick look back at the three athletic events that have taken place since your humble correspondent last put pixels to screen — to wit, the Music City Bowl, the Dream Game, and the SEC regular-season opener vs. Georgia.

Music City Bowl

I’ll be brief: Chris Coyte should never again referee a college football game, but unfortunately, he will. The SEC should send a back-channel message to the Pac-12 that Coyte is persona non-grata in SEC football contests or in bowls where they are contestants. His ego simply cannot fit on the field with our squads.

The Dream Game

I noted in the comments after the game the magnitude of the destruction Kentucky visited on Louisville last Friday. It was staggering both in scope and brutal efficiency. A few highlights worthy of note:

  • Offensive efficiency was the 4th highest of the season at 1.21 points/possession. But it was the DE that was most impressive — 0.82 P/P, best of the season by a significant amount.
  • Turnover percentage was 15%, a solid number that I’m happy to see. More on that later.
  • The last time Kentucky beat Louisville by 20 or more points was when Tayshaun Prince stalked the hardwood back in 2001. To get to a 25 or higher spread, you have to go all the way back to the last century, (1999) when Denny Crum still roamed the sidelines and UK topped the Cardinals by 30. Tayshaun was on that team, too.
The SEC Opener vs. Georgia.

In stark contrast to the Louisville game, the OE for Kentucky was the second-worst of the season next to the Kansas brick-fest. But to their credit, Kentucky took splendid care of the ball to the tune of only 13.3% turnovers — a season-best so far. In fact, turnovers have been consistently decreasing since the Monmouth game, the last time UK turned it over more than 20% of possessions.

  • Shai Gilgeous-Alexander has been terrific lately, and is showing the rest of the team the right way to play by constantly probing and attacking the rim. I have seen Kevin Knox starting to get the idea despite his recent struggles, and PJ Washington also.
  • Hamidou Diallo is getting by way too much on his athleticism and is making poor decisions for a guy who’s been in the system for a year. Others are doing way better, and that is suboptimal.
  • Wenyen Gabriel may be the SEC’s most underrated player. He is starting to remind me of a tall Darius Miller with his timely shooting and consistent effort.
  • Sacha Killeya-Jones needs more love. He was impressive in relief of a foul-bound and moribund Nick Richards on Sunday.

Tweet of the Morning

Great Zot! And:

Your Quickies:

Kentucky football
Kentucky basketball
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College football

Unfortunately, that’s not how it works, or is likely to work in the near future. UCF had a great season, and they will be able to make faces at whoever the eventual winner is.

College basketball
Other sports news
  • The continuing saga of the leading douchnozzle in sports:
Other news
  • Yeah, a big goose egg in Louisville this morning.