The Kentucky Wildcats continue to help themselves in the polls. Despite giving fans high levels of anxiety with rough starts, the Cats have now won four games in a row and sit alone at the top of the SEC standings.
The latest AP Top 25 Poll is giving Kentucky some much-deserved love, putting them back inside the top 10 at No. 10.
Andy Katz also has the Wildcats in his top 10 at No. 8, adding, “The Wildcats are now in pole position to win the SEC.”
However, Kentucky is not receiving the love you would think they would deserve in other various rankings across the interwebs. Perhaps it is more accurate to say that other teams do not seem to be penalized in the same way after losses that Kentucky is.
For example, despite several losses by team’s above them and Kentucky winning both games this week, the Wildcats fell one spot in the ESPN Power Rankings. They now sit at No. 15 as they were jumped by both Creighton and Villanova, and West Virginia fell behind them. Also of note is that Auburn lost to Georgia and did not move from No. 11. This is what Jeff Borzello had to say about the Cats:
“Kentucky struggled for most of the 40 minutes against Ole Miss, but the Wildcats erased a seven-point second-half deficit to come out with their fourth straight win. There’s a couple of things worth noting from Kentucky’s recent play. One, the Wildcats have done it despite Ashton Hagans not playing his best basketball. In his last five games, Hagans is averaging 7.6 points, 4.6 assists and 3.6 turnovers. Two, Kentucky hasn’t lost at home since Nov. 12 to Evansville, but it felt — anecdotally — like the Wildcats struggled more at home. It’s not just anecdotal, though. According to Torvik’s adjusted efficiency rankings, Kentucky is No. 51 in the country in home games and No. 10 in road games.”
In the CBS Sports Top 25 and 1, the Cats did move up one spot to No. 12 and were not jumped by anyone. Give Gary Parrish credit for penalizing losses by other teams, but it was not a good enough effort by Kentucky to get them in his top 10 just yet.
“Immanuel Quickley finished with 17 points and three assists in Saturday’s 67-62 victory over Ole Miss,” Parrish wrote. “The Wildcats are 8-1 in their past nine games with the lone loss in that stretch coming at Auburn. “
Despite having two wins this week, Kentucky has fallen a few spots in the NET Rankings since last week, now sitting at No. 24. It seems that had more to do with quality wins by other teams than Kentucky’s performance. The Wildcats do not have a ton of quality games left on their schedule, so they had better take advantage of LSU coming to town on Tuesday.