Posted: 3/4/2012 11:22:34 AM
Here's how I see the SEC:
1 Great team: Kentucky
3 Good teams: Vanderbilt, Florida, & Tennessee (TN playing better now that they can focus on the game)
8 Ugly teams: The rest of the SEC, (AL has GREAT D that really slows the game down, but in return can't keep up offensively, you gotta have Offense to be successful, Defense can only win you so many games)
Florida Home Conference Games
Tue Jan 10 Georgia W, 70-48 - Georgia Sucks on both sides of the ball and yet LOST to GA playing away LAST WEEKEND, this one is a little far fetched, but Georgia = Florida
Sat Jan 21 Louisiana St. W, 76-64 - Offense Sucks
Sat Jan 28 Mississippi St W, 69-57 - Awesome, Awesome Offense, but HORRIBLE defense
Thu Feb 2 South Carolina W, 74-66 - Really?! Only beat the 2-14 in conference Gamecocks by 8 AT HOME?!
Sat Feb 4 Vanderbilt W, 73-65 - Split 2-game Home/Away series, Vanderbilt = Florida
Sat Feb 11 Tennessee L, 75-70 - Lost to Tennessee both at home and away, Tennessee > Florida
Tue Feb 21 Auburn W, 63-47 - Worst Offense in SEC
Kentucky Away Conference Schedule:
Wed Jan 11 150 Auburn W, 68-53
Sat Jan 14 Tennessee W, 65-62 - Swept 2-game Home/Away series this year while Florida LOST BOTH
Tue Jan 24 Georgia W, 57-44 - Swept 2-game Home/Away series this year while Florida SPLIT
Sat Jan 28 Louisiana St. W, 74-50
Sat Feb 4 South Carolina W, 86-52 - Pummeled the Conference's Worst Gamecocks by 34 ON THE ROAD, while Florida won by 8 AT HOME
Sat Feb 11 Vanderbilt W, 69-63 - Swept 2-game Home/Away series this year while Florida split
Tue Feb 21 Mississippi St. W, 73-64
Conference Stats Broken Down:
Eff. FG%: 1st 54.8
Turnover %: 1st 15.4
Off. Reb. %: 2nd 36.7
3P%: 2nd 41.3
2P%: 1st 52.1
FT%: 2nd 74.3
Eff. FG%: 1st 43.0
3P%: 4th 32.7
2P%: 1st 40.5
Block%: 1st 21.1
John Calipari is a fricken genious for what he was able to teach these kids. To have such a team that is so proficient on both sides is the ball, is unbelievable. And I love that Calipari focuses directly on just straight, good defense. He doesn't push them to gamble for steals or push for the TOs, but focus strictly on guarding your man and seeing the whole court. I don't understand how they can mix so much focus with the ascpect of fun also, but they do it well. And when I say "boys" I mean it. To train 3 freshman and 2 sophmores with the Senior Darius Miller on and off the court, is just amazing. Ok, Ok, enough of the praising and back to the good stuff.
The Kentucky Defense is also extremely smart in their play. They are tops in the league at fouling and not allowing opponents to get to the line. And when opponents Don't get to the line, they have to climb over a team that holds their opponents to 40.5% in 2-pt shots and 32.7% in 3's?!?!
Bottom line here is that Kentucky has the #1 Offense and the #1 Defense in the SEC.
Eff. FG%: 3rd 52.8
Turnover %: 3rd 17.8
Off. Reb. %: 8th 32.1
3P%: 4th 36.8
2P%: 2nd 50.9
FT%: 1st 75.5
Eff. FG%: 9th 50.6
3P%: 12 39.6 ****last in conference
2P%: 7th 46.2
Block%: 11th 9.2
Here's what I see between these two teams:
Kentucky swept both Tennessee and Vanderbilt who have BETTER DEFENSES than Florida. Florida is offensively minded and are going to have to do just that to win or cover this game,...and guess what, their defense is not going to make their offensive job any easier. Florida allows 39.6% shooting behind the arc. THAT IS HORRIBLE! Couple that together with a Kentucky that hits a super-high 3P% of 41.3% and it's a green light for Kentucky's Doron Lamb (48.4% 3-pt shooting!) and Darius Miller (39.5%), with the supporting role of Kyle Wiltjer (plays less than half of the minutes) who hits over 40% of his 3's. Expect Kentucky to get their 3-balls in the game while Florida has a tough time getting theirs. Florida hits 36.8% in 3's while Kentucky holds their opponents to 32.7%.
Though Florida is a good free-throw shooting team, I just don't see them getting to the line here much at all. Kentucky prides themselves on playing smart defense and makes them take bad shots. They seldom make stupid and unnecessary fouls.
Kentucky holds opps to 40.5% from within the arc and much of that is because of Anthony Davis. Kentucky gets 8.5 blocks per game in conference and Anthony Davis is pretty much all of that stat,...with Terrence Jones and Michael Kidd-Gilchrist getting at least a piece of that pie. Anthony Davis hits 68.5% of his 2-Pointers due to his dominance by the hoop.
The thing that stands out in their previous match-up is Florida went 6 of 27 from behind the arc and shot 34.9 percent overall from the field. 6 of 27 is not great for a team that lives and dies by them. In point distribution of 3's, 2's, and FT's, Florida has the 4th biggest portion of their points coming from the 3-ball.
This is not a good team vs a good team. It's a Great team vs a live-or-die-by-the-3 team with a bad defense,..and home-court can only help you so much.
Kentucky Wildcats -5