With the means folks had been speaking about Tennessee, that you simply would be in a position to’ve view the Vols were one thing lower than 25-3. But that’s exactly what they were Saturday morning. They were 25-3 with a draw shut over No. 1 Gonzaga and 0 losses at dwelling or to teams outdoors of the head 15 of the unique Associated Press poll.
Sure, UT turned into lawful 2-2 in its old four video games; that’s what created the skeptics. However the first of these losses turned into at No. 4 Kentucky while the 2nd came at No. 13 LSU. In other words, they were lawful facet highway losses to basically objective correct opponents. Nothing more. So, hand to coronary heart, I for mosey no longer understood why so many of us were freaking out about Rick Barnes’ crew in come of Tennessee’s rematch with Kentucky
Expectantly of us will quiet down now.
Reality is, no topic what you heard, Tennessee turned into for mosey no longer anything nevertheless legit. And Saturday afternoon served as a reminder attributable to the Volunteers dominating Kentucky reasonably great from the outlet tip to the closing buzzer en route to a 71-52 blowout inside Thompson-Boling Enviornment.
“Folk who said Tennessee wasn’t objective correct after we beat them in our dwelling are loopy,” Kentucky coach John Calipari educated newshounds afterward. “That is a gargantuan crew. … We got beat every which implies. We didn’t maintain it.”
Tennessee did, even supposing.
The Vols seemed means more admire themselves than they did two Saturdays in the past when they launched 42.4 percent of their field blueprint makes an attempt from beyond the arc, uncared for 18 of their 25 makes an attempt, and misplaced 86-69. On this Saturday, the Vols performed more for the duration of the arc, the assign they are, statistically, a ways more objective correct. Easiest 35.5 percent of their field blueprint makes an attempt were 3-level makes an attempt in the rematch. UT carried out 8-of-22 on 3-pointers, 19-of-42 on 2-pointers and for mosey no longer let the Wildcats bag nearer than 13 components in the closing 20 minutes.
UT moreover held UK to 31.8 percent taking pictures.
“This could perchance perchance want been the explicit defense we’ve performed all one year,” Barnes said.
So now Tennessee is 26-3 overall, 14-2 in the SEC and tied with LSU atop the league standings with two usual-season video games last. Kentucky is a sport help of the Vols and Tigers. For what it be worth, KenPom now projects Tennessee and LSU to allotment the SEC championship — with UK finishing on my own in third. And since LSU beat Tennessee closing weekend, the Tigers will seemingly be the No. 1 seed in the SEC Tournament, if things break this means, which implies our next Tennessee-Kentucky showdown could perchance attain in the semifinals of the SEC Tournament on March 16 inside Bridgestone Enviornment in Nashville.
Wouldn’t that be stress-free?
For the time being, that is hoping every person keeps correct kind perspective after one other lopsided result between these two. When Tennessee turned into handled effortlessly inside Rupp Enviornment, I educated somebody who’d hear that, in my tips, it turned into merely an aspect highway loss to a basically objective correct crew. No gargantuan deal. And now that Kentucky turned into lawful handled effortlessly inside Thompson-Boling Enviornment (without the injured Reid Travis, it ought to be popular), I poke to command one thing identical, and that one thing is this: it be merely an aspect highway loss to a basically objective correct crew. No gargantuan deal.
Kentucky is peaceable objective correct lawful admire Tennessee turned into repeatedly objective correct.
Either is ready to beating the alternative.
Both are legit Final Four contenders.