- Saturday, December 18 1999 -
Louisville - 46 (Head Coach: Denny Crum) - [Unranked]
Kentucky - 76 (Head Coach: Orlando Smith) - [Unranked]
|J. P. Blevins||8||0||0||0||0||0||0||0||0||0||0||0||0||0||0||0|
Halftime Score: Kentucky 35, Louisville 34
|Prior Game|||||Next Game|
|Maryland 66 - 72|||||Michigan State 60 - 58|
Game Writeup - Written by and courtesy of Stephen John; Kentucky Sports Report, (All Rights Reserved)
UK blows out the Cards
The Kentucky Wildcats had their coming out party in Rupp Arena tonight. The Wildcats put it all together on both ends of the floor, spanking the Louisville Cardinals 76-46. It was the second largest margin of victory between these two teams in their 31-game series. Kentucky beat Louisville in 1986 by a 34-point margin, 85-51. This meeting marked the first time the two teams had met where neither team was nationally ranked in the top 20.
"The effort was outstanding," Kentucky coach Tubby Smith said. "I would never have dreamed that we could hold Louisville like that because they've been playing great basketball."
Coach Tubby Smith made a decision to change his starting lineup, replacing Jules Camara with Keith Bogans, making the lineup smaller and faster. The strategy worked. Tubby stuck with that starting lineup much of the way, as the bench was used less than usual.
Both teams played very well in the first half. Kentucky (5-4) shot the basketball well, made crisp, clean passes and played aggressive defense. Louisville (5-3) kept the game very close in the first half behind pressure defense, solid offensive rebounding and the hot hand of Tony Williams, who scored 11 of his 12 points in the first half. UK led by the thinnest of margins, 35-34, at the half.
In the second half, the wheels came off for Louisville. The Wildcats played their best half of basketball for the season and Louisville could not hit the ocean. Louisville scored only 12 points for the entire second half. The Cardinals did not score their first field goal for the first nine and a half minutes. For the half Louisville shot an abysmal 3-27 from the field and Kentucky coasted to victory.
Coach Denny Crum did not make excuses for the thrashing, "Our guys for some reason were in a defensive fog, especially in the second half," Louisville coach Denny Crum said. "We didn't make the extra pass and we didn't guard anyone so we got a good, old-fashioned butt whipping, and that's the way it's supposed to be. We got what we earned out there."
Tayshaun Prince played perhaps his best game as a Kentucky Wildcat. He did the job on both ends of the court. The 6'9" forward from California led all scorers with 20 points on 8-13 FG shooting. Prince also collected 7 rebounds, a steal and an all-time personal high 5 blocked shots. He did not commit a turnover. Prince was effective inside and out. He shot well from beyond the three-point arc (3-5), he frequently brought the ball up the court against pressure, he used his long arms to grab rebounds, he finished on the break in transition and made several shots created off the dribble.
Jamaal Magloire collected another "double-double" with 12 points and 10 rebounds. Magloire played his best offensive game in some time, hitting short shots in the paint and taking the ball aggressively to the basket with thunderous jams off of interior passing. Magloire added three more blocked shots to his all-time Kentucky school record.
Desmond Allison also starred for Kentucky. Dez had 16 points from 6-9 FG shooting (2-3 from 3-point range). He also had 2 steals, 4 assists and 3 rebounds. Keith Bogans took his staring role seriously, scoring 12 points and dishing 4 assists. He was 2-2 from 3-point range.
Tubby Smith presented Magloire with a game ball at center court in honor of his becoming Kentucky's career leader in blocked shots. Magloire's has 229, to Melvin Turpin's 226, from 1981-84.
Louisville's Reece Gaines breaks through to the hoop