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Husky Men's Basketball

The latest news and analysis on Husky men's hoops.

November 23, 2010 at 10:00 AM

Scouting report: Kentucky

Scouting report: Kentucky
Game info: 6:30 p.m. p.m. tonight at Lahaina Civic Center
TV/Radio: ESPN/KJR-950 AM
Record: 3-0. RPI rank: 21.
Previous game: Beat Oklahoma 76-64.
Stats/schedule: Click here.
Prediction: Picked to finish second in the 12-team SEC by conference coaches.
Coach: John Calipari is 38-3 in his second season with the Wildcats. His overall record is 483-143.
Series: Washington trails 0-1.
Last meeting: The Huskies lost 66-58 on March 14, 1985.
PLAYERS TO WATCH:
Terrence Jones is making an early Player of the Year bid. He’s a dynamic player and a very difficult matchup for any team because he’s 6 foot 9 and handles the ball like a guard. His perimeter shooting is somewhat suspect, but he’s been able to get to the rim on dribble drives and he draws a lot of fouls. Jones is also a very willing defender with a long wingspan. Against Oklahoma, he had four blocks and two steals.
— Freshman Brandon Knight was considered one of the top guards among high school recruits and so far he’s done nothing to show the hype wasn’t warranted. He steps into some pretty big shoes and follows John Wall, the No. 1 pick in this summer’s NBA draft. Knight is relentless offensively, often charging hard to the rim regardless of the number of defenders around the basket. His perimeter shot is a weakness and sometimes he gets careless with the ball. Knight had five turnovers against the Sooners.
Doran Lamb doesn’t get the publicity given to Jones and Knight, but he’s one of the stars of UK’s talented freshman class. He’s come off the bench in the first three games, but averages 15.0 points, which is third best on the team. Lamb shoots three-pointers with amazing accuracy. He’s converted eight of 12, which is more than half of his made field goals.
OVERVIEW:
— In their only meeting, Detlef Schrempf and UW assistant Paul Fortier each scored 16 points for the Huskies and Christian Welp added 10. The Huskies, however, had no answer for Kenny Walker who poured in 29 points and collected 10 rebounds to lead Kentucky to a win in the first round of the 1985 NCAA tournament. It was the last game for Washington coach Marv Harshman.
— Calipari uses a three-guard lineup, but it’s a big three-guard lineup. Everyone is 6-3 or taller. Backup forward Elroy Vargas is the tallest player in the rotation at 6-11.
— Kentucky has relied primarily on seven players, which could be a problem in a tournament setting where you play three times in three days with very little rest in between games. Jones and Knight average 33 minutes.
— It will be interesting to see the crowd tonight. Kentucky travels like no other basketball program in the country. Heck, there’s not many sports teams in the world that has fans like the Wildcats. They painted the Lahaina Civic Center in UK blue on Monday and made the place feel like the Wildcats were playing a home game.
STARTING LINEUP:
F – Terrence Jones, 6-8, 244, Fr., 22.0 ppg., 10.0 rpg.
C – Josh Harrellson, 6-10, 275, Sr., 3.3, 7.3
G – Darius Miller, 6-7, 228, Jr., 3.3, 7.3
G – Deandre Liggins, 6-6, 210, Jr., 10.7, 4.0 apg.
G – Brandon Knight, 6-3, 185, Fr., 17.0, 3.0
KEY MATCHUP:
Should be some very interesting battles tonight. First and foremost, Isaiah Thomas and Knight is a dream matchup pitting speed against speed. Justin Holiday will likely start out on Liggins and switch to Lamb when the UK freshman checks in. Figure to see Abdul Gaddy draw Miller, Darnell Gant on Harrellson and Matthew Bryan-Amaning on Jones. Both teams are evenly matched in terms of talent, which is why I believe the coaches will decide the outcome. Washington’s Lorenzo Romar has more options on the bench than Calipari and his substitutions and defensive assignments is going to play a big role in who wins tonight. Washington uses a 10-man rotation, but played nine guys in the early part of Monday’s game with freshman Terrence Ross receiving the fewest minutes. Romar can play big, small, defensive and fast with his lineups. He can also space the floor with an array shooters, who converted 17 three-pointers against Virginia. It will be curious to see which option he chooses.

Comments | Topics: Abdul Gaddy

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