North Carolina was just too tough for Kentucky and its lineup of young bucks.
You can see on Coach Calipari’s face that he is growing impatient with his young team, even this early in a young season.
The Tar Heels, not sporting one of their most talented teams of the Roy Williams era, managed this win while missing 19 free throws and having seven shots blocked.
UNC has already knocked off a pair of top 10 teams in Louisville and Michigan State, so this wasn’t a fluke. But we expect better from a Kentucky team with so much depth and future pro talent.
This loss sends another painful message that it is tough to build a season around a top recruiting class and not much more.
The Wildcats dominated the offensive glass and looked strong in the paint. But a combination of dumb turnovers and poor shot selection, hallmarks of young teams, outweighed anything good Kentucky could do on the defensive end.
Another bad sign: when Julius Randle does not play at his best, Kentucky struggles.
The lone bright spot, perhaps, is that Kentucky fought to the finish and will no doubt learn from the experience of playing a tough road game in one of college basketball’s most challenging environments.
But Kentucky must play much, much better team basketball to have any chance of molding this team into a national or even SEC contender by March.
Worst of all, the Cats squandered yet another opportunity to net a big out of conference win to impress the NCAA tourney committee.
The Louisville showdown looms ever larger.go back