OUISVILLE, Ky. (AP) - Louisville's quest of fulfilling coach Rick Pitino's hopes for the Cardinals repeating as national champions and becoming a "mini-dynasty" hinge on beating archrival Kentucky.
That's going to be a challenge against the Wildcats, who have been a thorn in the Cardinals' side.
Eighth-seeded Kentucky (26-10) enters Friday night's Midwest Regional showdown against fourth-seeded Louisville (31-5) with a 3-2 edge in the NCAA tournament and a 31-15 series lead. The Wildcats have won five of the last six against Louisville, including at the 2012 Final Four en route to their eighth national championship, and a 73-66 victory last year in Lexington on Dec. 28.
Kentucky would love to dash Louisville's dream of a third straight Final Four appearance, considering the Wildcats are trying to win their second title in three years.