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Was Louisville the best win Calipari has had in Rupp Arena?

By LARRY VAUGHT

Since John Calipari has been at Kentucky, he’s only lost two Rupp Arena games — Baylor and Texas A&M last season. He’s had some incredible wins, including the one over North Carolina on Anthony Davis’ last-shot block during the national championship season.

But has he ever had a bigger, more meaningful home win than the one over Louisville Saturday?

If UK had lost, it would have been the Cats’ fourth loss going into non-conference play, not what one expects from a team ranked No. 1 in preseason polls. It would have dropped UK out of the rankings, a huge blow for postseason seeding. It would have shaken a young team’s confidence even more, and likely caused quite a panic with UK fans as well.

And then to win the game with Julius Randle either a non-factor or unable to play the season half was something no one could have scripted.

Throw in the passion for the UK-Louisville rivalry, and I just can’t remember a bigger home win.

What about you? Where would you rank Saturday’s win on the list of Calipari victories in Rupp Arena? Anxious to see what vaughtsviews.com readers think and believe on  this.

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14 comments

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  1. LindaS

    Any win in Rupp is sensational but this one was extra special. The year of the card needs a 15 second sequel to include the win and the ouster of one of their players.
    I think Cal proved to little slick quick rick talent can defeat experience when talent plays together as a team, once they mature.
    little slick quick rick and his lemon face expression, his whining and cussing throughout the game, his pimping a player just to win has rattled my last nerve. Friend on FB sat behind the other schools bench and said he could her lsqr curse the whole game about the refs.
    I am so ashamed to think I went to school with the president of that university, there is no integrity there anymore, if there was, the sports programs, ie football and basketball would not have shadows of demons floating around them. It is a crying shame.
    This would all be a mute point of the Commonwealth had not saved that ‘other’ school behind when they were ready to go under because of lack of funds and the verge of bankruptcy.
    There was a heated discussion on a very renowned attorneys page yesterday. He made a bet with a judge and 2 other people at the courthouse. If that ‘other’ team lost, they were suppose to wear UK shirts, none of them did. One friend of his started bad mouthing Cal and the players. I had a few facts for him he didn’t like. GPA average, number in the NBA, diplomas awarded etc. He was really mad. Truth hurts.
    GO CATS!

  2. Judi Cole

    I know that win changed my whole attitude about the season ahead. I thought our boys would get it together sooner or later and was hoping that this was the game they did it. Coach Cal looked very happy in the post game interview and you could tell that it meant the world to him. I think that Cal’s strategy against the Cards proved his worth as a coach (as if he had to prove it!). I expect 2014 to be the year of the CAT!

  3. Karen Sprinkle

    It was a pretty big win for the reasons you mentioned, Larry. Losing a fourth game to a ranked opponent this season with little opportunity to gain wins over ranked foes during the conference schedule would have definitely hurt UK’s seeding in the NCAA tournament at the end of the year. As it is, I think it gave a needed burst of confidence to us fans, if not the players. I’ll reserve judgment as to whether or not it was the biggest home win of the Calipari era thus far.

  4. UKFMLY

    Easily the biggest for all reasons mentioned. But for one not. It also ends the media driven style comparisons. 5-1 vs rp Championship in 3 years not 13 says it all. But the media ignores the facts. His numbers at ul would not have been acceptable at UK. A coach would not last 12 years here with no ring and that is an undisputable fact. The BBN does not accept average. But little brother does.

    KEEPUPTHE GOOD WORK

    GO BLUE OR STAY HOME

  5. jerry

    wish cbb fans would look at the non conference teams before they use the phrase like all teams play cupcakes. on a given day any team U K played in Dec. could beat any top 10 teams in the country. also wish they would look at final score, like Mich St 3rd game of the season. preseason win-loss record can and is very deceiving. wildcats are coming along great. GO BIG BLUE CATS CATS CATS!!!

  6. TheProfessor

    This non-conference schedule was not full of cupcakes (Ranked 200 or higher). Only 2, Northern Kentucky (#302) and Ashville (#215). Last year, UK played 6 of them in a 13 game non-conference schedule. The year before there 5.

    Louisville this year has played 5 in 13 games. Ohio State has played 5 this year. Michigan State has had 4 this year,

    As for the biggest win in Rupp, I think the UNC win 2 years ago was pretty big. Anthony Davis with the block at the end to seal the deal lifted that team.

  7. Dee W.

    Well, it certainly wasn’t a bad one…

  8. Little Baron

    Title #8 gives the Win over NC with Davis’ legendary block the top spot.

    Title #9 this year would give reason to consider if this UL win tops it, because the UL win FINALLY ends a UK slide spanning 2 seasons.

  9. Little Baron

    Title #8 gives the Win over NC with Davis’ legendary block the top spot.

    Title #9 this year would give reason to consider if this UL win tops it, because the UL win FINALLY ends a UK slide spanning 2 seasons.

    The Wall-Cousins-& Co win over NC was also a BIG win in Rupp, with the win a statement that the new era of UK basketball had arrived – complete with our first real coach since Pitino, and a team loaded with talented draft picks.

  10. Larry T Clemons

    I Have To Say, without a doubt this was and is the Biggest….All LV’s reason ans Our Team Beat The National Champions….

  11. steve

    this game is not over just yet. the florida game last year was a so called huge win and look where that got us. ky has to build on this win, make a deep run, and then maybe we can judge how big a win this was.

    1. Larry Pup

      I agree steve. I say quit talking and keep playing. It ain’t over by a long shot. UK beat a good Louisville team by just 7 points on their home floor. A big win no doubt, but it is time to get focused for the SEC, which I believe will be no cake walk for this UK team.

  12. krautdog

    I think it was, primarily because of the adversity of Julius Randle on the bench after being “unstoppable” in the first half. I told my wife that they could not win this game without him. WOW-was I ever glad to be wrong and very impressed.

  13. Katbluefan

    This loss must have been a very bad one for Pitino if he couldn’t make it to the media room for his press conference after the game. It just goes to show how immature he is. Now it looks like he has more problems with one of his players who he has now dismissed from the team for good. When you criticize a coach for how he recruits and the type of players he brings to his program it usually comes back and bites you and this looks to me that this is what has happened to Pitino.

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