What a day. What a game. What a win.
To give you an idea of how improbable getting this win was:
- Kentucky had just lost to South Carolina, who lost at home last Saturday to these very Vols by 43 and just lost by 41 at home to Texas A&M.
- Starting point guard Sahvir Wheeler and backup forward Daimion Collins did not play due to injury.
- Kentucky was a 13-point underdog and fell behind 8-0 to start the game, at which point ESPN Analytics gave the Vols a 95.6% chance of victory.
- Cason Wallace, arguably Kentucky’s second-best player, played just 22 minutes due to foul trouble and recurring back spasms. He scored just three points in Knoxville.
- The Vols were riding a 25-game winning streak at home and had won six of nine in this series, while the Wildcats had never won a road game vs. a top-five team while unranked.
- Kentucky was ranked 65th in NET compared to the Vols ranking No. 2.
But when the final honor sounded, it was Kentucky that won 63-56.
Now, where does this win rank in the John Calipari era? It’s always hard to compare big regular-season wins to any postseason wins, but in terms of non-postseason games, this one is up there.
Personally, I think this was one of the top-five regular-season wins under Coach Cal, mostly because of just how far the program had fallen and how much this win should turn the tide back in the Wildcats’ favor, while also putting them back on the right side of the NCAA Tournament bubble.
What say you, BBN? Let us know in the comments section!