Big Blue Links for Friday:
Physical Kansas State is looking to knock out Kentucky, writes Jerry Tipton of the Herald-Leader. John Calipari hinted that the NCAA matched UK against a physical team on purpose. Kansas State coach Bruce Weber said that these days, if you try on defense people say you are physical.
Kansas State’s Marcus Foster will take lessons learned in Kansas games into the Kentucky game, writes Vahe Gregorian of the Kansas City Star. A freshman from Texas, Foster was a bit under the recruiting radar, but has had a dynamite first season with the Wildcats. He’ll be the focus of the Kentucky defense tonight.
Who is the most important UK player in the tournament? That’s the question Mark Story tackles in his column as he ranks the Cats from top-to-bottom in order of how well eachhas to play for John Calipari’s team to make a tournament run. Or “shock the world” as the players said Thursday.
For Kentucky, it’s win or there are a lot of question marks, writes Rick Bozich of WDRB. “Lose by even a point and this season will be recorded as the most colossal disappointment of Calipari’s career,” writes Rick. In talking to Kansas State’s players, that group of Wildcats said all the pressure is on UK’s Wildcats.
Kentucky doesn’t do subtlety, but the Cats are painting themselves as underdogs in this tournament, writes Tim Sullivan of the Courier-Journal. And, to be honest, with Kansas, Wichita State and Kansas State at this NCAA site, so close to their respective campuses, the focus has not been on the Cats.
Julius Randle is not going to worry about the shots he has been missing, writes Larry Vaught of the Advocate-Messenger. Randle has to play for Kentucky to do well in this NCAA Tournament. And if you remember, Randle was on the bench to start the second half of the SEC Tournament championship game last Sunday.
Kentucky and Kansas’ freshmen have a lot to prove, writes Jason King of Bleacher Report. Of course, Kansas is without one of its star freshmen, center Joel Embiid, for its game today against Eastern Kentucky.
Kansas, Wichita State and Kansas State fans are all here together in St. Louis. Will they root for each other, or spar with each other? asks Pat Forde of Yahoo Sports.
Eastern Kentucky thinks it has the right formula to take down Kansas, writes Mark Story of the H-L. Colonels coach Jeff Neubauer admits his team will have to execute “incredibly well” to upset the No. 2-seeded Jayhawks.
Photo of Andrew Wiggins and John Calipari by Jaime Green/Wichita Eagle/McClatchy.
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