This one saw the return of TyTy Washington and Sahvir Wheeler to the UK lineup, though neither of the pair started.
Kentucky got down by 13 early in the first half thanks to a 15-0 Arkansas run, but Kentucky battled back and went into the break down by six.
From there, it was a back-and-forth game that Kentucky had plenty of chances to turn the momentum or take full control of the game, but too many mistakes proved to be the downfall of the Wildcats today.
Arguably Oscar Tshiebwe’s best performance of the season was all for naught, as the supporting cast struggled to get anything fluid going.
This team will be battle tested going into March, and on a neutral court, I feel confident this team can beat anyone. However, playing three of the top four in the SEC on the road can take a toll.
Here’s what Twitter had to say:
My struggle with this team for the last few weeks has been that no game's outcome seems all that important. We know who they are, that they will show up. Great showcase for SEC basketball but this outcome can't change how you feel about them.— Justin Rowland (@RowlandRIVALS) February 26, 2022
Disappointed Kentucky didn’t win. Poor decisions and unfortunate call down the stretch. Likely will cost UK a 1 seed and maybe even the 2 seed in SEC Tourney— Matt Jones (@KySportsRadio) February 26, 2022
BUT I still love this team in March on a neutral court against pretty much anyone
Doug Shows ruined it late with that call but the possession before was bad by Wheeler with a chance to seal it. Keion too many mistakes too. Get TyTy back in rhythm and let’s get to March— Bobby Reagan (@BarstoolReags) February 26, 2022
Kentucky vs Arkansas is a war— year 19 (@johnrivers131) February 26, 2022
Tough loss but not a bad loss.— Sidelines - Kentucky (@SSN_Kentucky) February 26, 2022
Oscar Tshiebwe is NPOY and it is a shame if he doesn’t win it. https://t.co/8Q3l5VVwm3
Have thought Oscar Tshiebwe has been the Wooden Award favorite for a few weeks -- had 30 points, 18 rebounds (eight offensive), two assists, three blocks in a losing effort today. Another ridiculous performance.— Jeff Borzello (@jeffborzello) February 26, 2022
Calipari says Wheeler and Washington were "rusty to get started and then they got going." Says he walked in laughing at halftime. Played like crap, down six.— Kyle Tucker (@KyleTucker_ATH) February 26, 2022
Cal says push-off offensive foul on Keion Brooks, which he's not sure you should make in that moment, "was the game."
What the hell?— T.J. Walker (@TJWalkerRadio) February 26, 2022
A UK player has a shot blocked, going out of bounds… attempted save by an Arkansas player… going out of bounds…
Reviewed and it’s Arkansas’ ball and out of bounds on Kentucky?
Good game, Arkansas.. good game!— Michael Eaves (@michaeleaves) February 26, 2022
My biggest takeaway: Sahvir and TyTy were healthy enough to play the WHOLE GAME!!! #BBN
The Doug Shows game— . (@LilJoeBHall) February 26, 2022
Pete Gillen should be arrested if he’s ever within a six foot radius of a microphone again— Brent Wainscott (Packers Owner) (@BrentWainscott_) February 26, 2022
Cats gave up 26 points in the final 9:15 today after taking a 52-48 lead. Just could not come up with stops.— Jeff Drummond (@JDrumUK) February 26, 2022
The last minute of this UK game has been a total choke job.— Mohammad Ahmad (@MohammadAhmadTV) February 26, 2022
Why did Keion take that shot?— Matt Jones (@KySportsRadio) February 26, 2022
I don’t get that one at all
Both good points... I will say, how Brooks plays in the last 2 minutes of a game is one of my few very big questions about this team. Will Keion make winning plays in the biggest moments from the Sweet 16-on. Not saying no, just don't know. https://t.co/xmZlSXd4Ny— Justin Rowland (@RowlandRIVALS) February 26, 2022
Arkansas players just smiled when asked about Oscar Tshiebwe and how difficult it is to play against him.— Ben Roberts (@BenRobertsHL) February 26, 2022
JD Notae: "That dude. He crazy down there. I ain't gonna lie."
Calipari doesn't seem real discouraged (nor should he be) from the narrow loss at Arkansas: "We're a good team. We're good."— Kyle Tucker (@KyleTucker_ATH) February 26, 2022
Final thought: Kentucky going 2-1 vs Bama, LSU and at Arkansas (and being a play or two away from 3-0) without Sahvir Wheeler/TyTy Washington for most, is one of the most impressive things anyone has done all year.— Aaron Torres (@Aaron_Torres) February 26, 2022
Wildcats just need to get healthy - and they can beat anyone