LEXINGTON, Ky. (WKYT) - John Calipari puts another young, talented team on the court for the first time tonight as Kentucky plays Maryland in the Barclays Center Classic. Tipoff is set for 8:30pm on ESPN, UK is rated a double-digit favorite. Morehead State, coached by former Wildcat Sean Woods, will take on LIU-Brooklyn in the opener at 5:45pm.
Before heading to New York Thursday, Calipari said his teams low post defense will be tested by Maryland. "We're going to find out where we truly are with post defense. Calipari went on to say it's good to face a challenge early. "I would rather have had a game or two under our belt before we played it, but the reality of it is, this team is so young lets learn right away. Here's where we are, here's where we're not. This is were we're going to be all right, you can see it. Here's where we're really awful, lets shore that up."
Maryland will also put a young team on the floor Friday evening. The Terps were given a big boost Wednesday with 6-5 forward Dez Wells was ruled eligible by the NCAA. Calipari says Wells makes Maryland a top-25 team.
Terps coach Mark Turgeon says he's excited about playing Kentucky and he knows what his team's up against. "They can go small, they can go big, we can do the same." Turgeon knows all about UK's talent level, making scoring look easy. "Just throw it up to the rim, guy dunks it, comes off the rim, a guy dunks. They make it look easy. Besides that I thought size wise or player wise, we match up pretty well with them."