LEXINGTON, Ky. (WKYT) - It may only be November and just the third game of the season, but for these fans watching their number one Wildcats take on the number two Michigan State Spartans has more of a March Madness-like atmosphere. And as fans waited for tip off, their emotions ran high.
"I hope UK can pull it out, though they're talented so I guess we'll see what happens," said Connor Shoebrooks.
"I'm just hoping we can play good, play as a team and hopefully get a win," added Jordan Miller.
Other fans boasted before the game, "It's going to be a great night for the Cats. Yeah, they're a young team, but I believe we can overcome any obstacle that's handed to us right now," said Rodney Johnson.
That was easy to say before the clock started, but a slow start for the blue and white undid a lot of the hype.
"I think they're just rushing it, they're not - It's a big game, they're all freshman playing against an experienced team, but I think Cal is going to settle them down," assessed Shoebrooks.
Late in the game, the Cats made a run for it. Closing a double digit lead by the Spartans to a single possession game. Things looked good for the UK faithful, and lead to the ever famous "C-A-T-S" chant filling the air inside Buffalo Wild Wings.
Then as time ticked down, the Spartans proved to be too much and pulled away to win 78-74. Still these fans found a silver-lining in the loss.
"I have a feeling we'll definitely progress through the season. Coach Cal, he always finds a way to work it out, so I'll see if towards the end of the season we'll be ready for the tournament," summarized Miller.
"It's kind of heart-breaking, but (then again) not really. I expect that from a team of freshman. They played hard, they played a good game," explained Johnson.
While this result wasn't what the fans wanted to see, all is not lost. They still believe this is the team that could return UK to the National Championship.