Rupp Arena is one of the very few arenas in college basketball that can fit more than 20,000 screaming fans inside.
And while the acoustics aren’t like those of Allen Fieldhouse or Cameron, when it’s full it’s fuller than any other place in the country. Big Blue Nation is always there for the Cats home or away, but especially at home, and that has enabled them to win as favorites, underdogs, or just when they need a win.
With TyTy Washington and possibly some others looking doubtful for Saturday’s game against Alabama, the Cats need all the help they can get from the crowd if they want to stay in the hunt for a 1-seed and avoid a two-game losing streak.
Alabama shot terribly from 3-point range last game, and probably won’t be repeating that ugly performance again. Teams usually aren’t as easy to beat the second time around if you beat them in the first game, and Nate Oats has won in Rupp Arena before (last year).
This won’t be an easy game—in fact, it might be a game where the Cats have to fight for their lives from the opening tip. They and the crowd need to play with their skin in the game and act like they have something to lose that they don’t want to give up. They have to defend home and get that win while they’re not at full strength to make the team better for when they are back to full strength.
While this might not be the biggest game of the Cats’ season, it is the next game, so it is a big deal. Let’s hope that the team and the crowd comes out firing on all cylinders Saturday afternoon against the Tide because it’s going to be a dogfight.
Get up and get loud Saturday, BBN! Go big blue!