John Calipari prefers the "Marshall" Ryan Harrow to the "cool guy"

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Dec 22, 2012; Lexington, KY, USA; Kentucky Wildcats guard Ryan Harrow (12) dribbles the ball against the Marshall Thundering Herd in the second half at Rupp Arena. Kentucky defeated Marshall 82-54. Mandatory Credit: Mark Zerof-USA TODAY Sports

It’s been said many times that the key to this Kentucky Wildcat basketball team … and season is the play of Ryan Harrow. And against Marshall, we finally saw what Harrow can do as he went 10-17 from the floor with 4 assists and 3 steals. It’s safe to say that John Calipari noticed as well:

“Here is what I told him. When he’s playing the right way with aggressiveness, talking to his teammates, that look in his eyes, he’s as good as anybody in the country right now,” Calipari said. “I’m looking around at point guards, he’s fine.

“That other guy — you ready? — the cool guy, he’s not very good. The guy that runs in and gets bumped and falls on the floor, throws the ball, that guy is not very good. That other guy we saw? Spurts today, just play that way. Every minute you’re on the court, play that way.”

Harrow said he never thought of himself as “the cool guy,” even when he was playing at North Carolina State.

“Coach Cal says the good guy is one of the best point guards in the nation. The cool guy sucks,” Harrow laughed and said. “I don’t want to be a sucky player.”

 

Dec 22, 2012; Los Angeles, CA, USA; UCLA Bruins guard/forward Shabazz Muhammad (15) holds the ball away from Fresno State Bulldogs guard Tyler Johnson (1) during the game at Pauley Pavailion. Mandatory Credit: Richard Mackson-USA TODAY Sports

I know that Christmas is over, but Jeff Borzello gives us a look at some Wildcats that may have been as he has Anthony Bennett and Shabazz Muhammad at #1 and #5 in his Freshman of the Year rankings. Archie Goodwin and Nerlens Noel do get honorable mention status however.

 

Dec 19, 2012; Louisville, KY, USA; The Louisville Cardinals mascot performed during the second half against the Florida International Golden Panthers at the KFC Yum! Center. Louisville defeated Florida International 79-55. Mandatory Credit: Jamie Rhodes-USA TODAY Sports

If there is one thing that I do hope, it’s that Kentucky can embrace the underdog tag and go into the Yum! Center ready to fight. Rick Bozich pulled some numbers and found that both Ken Pomery and Jeff Sagarin have Louisville as sizable favorites:

KEN POMEROY: His model has Louisville winning, 71-62, with an 80 percent win probability. (For the record, Pomeroy has U of L favored in every game until a March 2 trip to Syracuse.)

JEFF SAGARIN: His preferred Predictor rating has Louisville better by 11.9 points.

Bozich does add that the numbers do seem high for a rivalry game, but the closest game the last four years, all Kentucky wins, have been seven points.

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