Beyond the Box Scores

Why the Wildcats are ranked 3rd/4th

By: Jeff Archer
By: Jeff Archer

Many Wildcat fans today are wondering why the Cats fell from 1st to 3rd or 4th in the two polls following their loss to South Carolina earlier in the week.

The Kentucky Wildcats rebounded from their first loss on Tuesday to South Carolina with a well played win over Vanderbilt.  That has some UK fans wondering why they didn't simply fall to number 2.  The answer is simple... they haven't beaten a good team, seriously.

If you look over their schedule, they have beaten only 1 team is the latest Top 25, Vanderbilt (18/20).  And that was at home.  Their wins over North Carolina and Connecticut have lost some luster in recent weeks with both teams taking a nose-dive.  Here are the Wildcats best wins on the season:

85-72 over Vanderbilt at home
89-77 at Florida
64-61 over Connecticut on a nuetral court
71-62 over Louisville at home
68-66 over North Carolina at home

This list leaves a lot to be desired.  Vanderbilt is the only team that seems a lock to make the NCAA Tournament.  After that, it's a bunch of bubble teams.  Florida, Louisville, UNC and UConn are all being considered as bubble teams.  The Cats lack quality wins because they have played a soft schedule.

Does that mean Kentucky is not good, of course not!  But looking at things logically, Kansas, Syracuse and Villanova all have better wins.  The Cats have plenty of opportunities improve their resume in the coming weeks.  They face Mississippi on Tuesday before taking on Tennessee twice and rematches with Vandy and Florida.

So be patient.  UK will continue to climb as long as they keep winning.

~ Jeff Archer

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