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Julius Randle: “It’s the time of year where there are no more excuses”

By LARRY VAUGHT

Jarrod Polson, a senior guard who sparked UK’s win over Belmont, knows what he considers the key for Kentucky Saturday against Louisville.
“Just be able to handle pressure well. They’re always a pressing team and they try to get up in you,” Polson said. “I don’t know, bring a lot of energy into that game. I don’t think that’ll be hard for us just because the rivalry. I think if we do those two things we’ll be good.”

Handling the pressure can be easier said than done. Louisville is 11th nationally in steals per game at 9.8 (Kentucky is 335th at 4.1). Kentucky is 233rd nationally in turnovers with 156.

Freshmen Andrew Harrison and  James Young —and to a lesser extent Aaron Harrison —have struggled with turnovers so far this season as has Julius Randle.

Louisville senior point guard Russ Smith (140th) and backcourt mate Chris Jones (32nd) rank near the top of the country in steal percentage. That’s could be a troubling statistic for Kentucky, especially with the way Smith excels in transition.

Randle seems eager to assert himself as a go-to player for Kentucky as the Cats try to beat a ranked team for the first time in four outings this season.

“I have to step up. Coach has given me every opportunity, but I’ve got to step up more,” Randle said.  “I have to talk more, run the floor, be a great defender, do more for the team. It’s time of the season where there are no more excuses. We just have to step up. We’ve played in big games and can’t play in any bigger game than Louisville. It’s really big for us and I’ve just got to be ready to do more.”

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5 comments

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  1. Mike

    Shocking and very negative stats for these Cats on turnovers and especially so for the quality of their rankings. Think most of these guys came in with some shaky work habits and apparently low BB I.Q.’S.

  2. Mike

    Shocking and very negative stats for these Cats on turnovers and especially so for the quality of their rankings. Think most of these guys came in with some shaky work habits and apparently low BB I.Q.’S.

  3. TheProfessor

    The key area that this team must show improvement immediately is turnover ratio. The Cats commit too many, and force too few. This is a weakness that Pitino knows how to exploit.

  4. Seymour

    UKs defense not based on steals to get turns. Blocks and rebounding, I suspect that we have the edge in stats for both those categories and that tips the scale towards UK.

  5. Little Baron

    Blocks & rebounding are both vital stats, which we lead in, but there is no excuse for so many turnovers. TO’s too often result in giving up an easy basket and sometimes fouling them as well.

    Randle’s turnovers are sometimes the result of a bad pass by a guard, into a crowded lane where the D has already collapsed.

    This game is Calipari vs Pitino, as well as UK vs UL. We have the size and superior talent, and it’s time for the results to prove it. The “we are young” can no longer be an excuse, with a dozen games (+ 2 Exhib) in the books.

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