CATS in Nashville, Tip at 7:00 PM
NASHVILLE – February 11, 2020 – Dustin Cordell – BSN
Later today our beloved Kentucky Wildcats will face off against the Vanderbilt Commodores in Nashville, Tennessee. Kentucky is coming off an impressive thirteen point win against Tennessee on Saturday. Vanderbilt will enter the game coming off a ten point loss at the hands of Mississippi State. This will be the second meeting between the two teams with Kentucky coming out on top in the first one by a score of 71-62.
The nine point win is not indicative of how the game played out. The Commodores hadn’t won a SEC conference game since 2018 and many thought this would be an easy win for the Wildcats. However, Kentucky found themselves down by as many as ten points in the second half of the game and the outcome was starting to look bleak. The Cats then seemed to realize the danger they were in and turned on the intensity while blitzing past Vandy, outscoring them by nineteen points the rest of the half.
This is a game the Wildcats better come in ready to play from the tip tonight though as Vandy has appeared to have found some momentum. Also, while Kentucky has more experienced players than normal, Vanderbilt is a unique place to play. Coaches are not on the sidelines but instead are in the endzones which could cause issues for the younger Cats when lined up on the opposite end from Coach Calipari. With that said, Kentucky will need Hagans and Richards to help direct the freshman in that situation.
Let’s take a look at some of the numbers heading into the game tonight.
Quickly: 14.8 points per game Saben Lee: 16.9 points per game
Richards: 8.3 rebounds per game Dylan Disu: 5.6 rebounds per game
Hagans: 6.8 assists per game Saben Lee: 4.5 assists per game
75.3 points per game 72.7 points per game
65.7 points against a game 74.2 points against per game
46.3 field goal percentage 43.3 field goal percentage
37.7 rebounds per game 32.9 rebounds per game
14.0 assists per game 11.8 assists per game
4.9 blocks per game 3.7 blocks per game
Kentucky goes into the game as a +11.5 point favorite in Vegas and when looking at the numbers you can see why. The Wildcats lead the Commodores in every major category listed. Outside of the numbers though, you can take one look at the teams during games and see the Wildcats have the better talented players and matchups. Speaking of matchups, the key player to this game will be Nick Richards as Vanderbilt simply has no one to match up with him inside.
With all the information listed and from the games I have watched, I feel as if Kentucky comes out on top in this matchup tonight. Let us know how you feel about the matchup with score, MVP, and more in the comment section.