Indiana Takes Kentucky To Woodshed
Hand Davis First Ever Win Over Cats

It will always amaze me how fans can get so excited about the Kentucky basketball team after it has its own way with Georgia State , but forgets the absence of defense that UNC exposed just one week ago. Sure, it is always cleansing to erase the memory of a loss with a win, but that erasure can't ever change the overriding landscape of the team. This team has difficulty scoring points when the opponent offers legitimate defensive pressure, and this team has trouble preventing an opponent from scoring when they have either sharp shooters from long range, or a dominant post man.

In the first half of today's IU-UK classic in Indianapolis , IU owned both ends of the floor, as they jolted Kentucky with a 35-19 halftime lead. IU dominated UK in every single game segment of the half, outscoring them segment for segment by 3, 4, 4, 2, and 3 points. That is nearly complete domination.

For the last couple of weeks, I have observed that Kentucky is still searching for its identity, its soul. The first half today provides an answer to that search, and Cat fans will not like the answer. This team's identity is that of no legitimate talent to compete with the recognized national competition..

UK scored its 19 points on an averaged pace 38 possessions for the entire half, including 6 by virtue of its offensive rebounding that produced 7 second chance points. IU scored its 35 points on a total of 35 possessions, including the 4 bonus possessions created by its offensive rebounding that produced 7 second chance points. IU had an offensive efficiency of 0.903 ppp on its 31 first chance possessions and 1.750 ppp for its 4 second chance possessions. UK had a pitiful 0.364 ppp on its 32 first chance possessions and 1.167 ppp on its 6 second chance possessions.

The free throw shooting in the first half was a fair 3 for 4 [75.0%] for Kentucky and 8-14 [57.1%] for IU. The field goal shooting, was better tonight for Kentucky from inside the arc, 47/1% [8-17] for Kentucky and for IU, 9-12 [75.0%]. Outside the arc, Kentucky shot a pitiful 0-12 [00.0%] while IU was a lower than average 3-10 [30.0%]. The pace of this game was equivalent to about 75-80 possessions for the game.

MAGIC NUMBER Tonight: the first team to score its 63rd point will win this game. UK needs 44 more points in the second half to reach this level before IU cam score 28 points. IU scored its 63rd point first with 2:19 to play jon a tree throw, taking the lead to 63-49.

The second half today held no more answers for the Cats than the first half held. In the second half, IU outscored the Cats 44-34 for the final 79-53 score.

UK controlled won the battle of the boards during the game, winning on total rebounds by 36-34, and on offensive rebounds, UK won again, 15-5, UK scored 53 points on its 88 possessions [0.602 ppp] while IU scored its 79 points using a total of 75 possessions [1.053]. For the game, UK committed 19 turnovers, above their season average, while IU protected its possessions better only committing 13 turnovers.

The second chance possessions were more productive for IU tonight which is contrary to recent trends, and UK 's second chance possessions were less productive than either IU's first chance or second chance possessions. Kentucky had 73 first chance possessions in which they scored 38 points, 0.548 ppp while they scored 13 points on their 15 second chance possessions, 0.867 ppp. IU had 70 first chance possessions on which they scored an impressive 70 points, 1.000 ppp while they scored 9 second chance points on their 5 second chance possessions, 1.800 ppp.

Tonight UK shot the ball very poorly from the field and well from the free throw line. From the field, 50.0% [17-34] inside the arc, but a miserable 2-27 from beyond the arc [7.4%] for a combined shooting percentage of 31.1%. The Free throw shooting was 13-17 [76.5%] which is quite remarkable, and possibly the high point of this game for the cats. Indiana shot well from the field and the line. Inside the arc, IU was 19-29 [65.5%] and outside the arc 5-16 [31.3%]. From the line, IU was 26-35 [74.3%]. Kentucky committed one turnover for every 4.6 possessions while forcing a turnover in every 5.8 possessions. Last year, in comparison, these turnover rates were 6.2 and 4.6 respectively for the season.

I predicted a Kentucky loss at the hand of IU today, 73-72, 79-53. The predicted v. actual offensive efficiencies were 0.896 and 0.602 ppp respectively, and the predicted v. actual defensive efficiencies were 0.874 and 1.053 ppp respectively.

Next Saturday, the Cats will take on Rick Pitino's Louisville Cardinals at Rupp Arena.. I predict that UK ....



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