After scoring a season-defining win Saturday over the Florida Gators, the Kentucky Wildcats are looking to build off of their best win of the year as they look to solidify their NCAA Tournament resume when they head to Nashville for the SEC Conference Tournament.
Here is a rundown of what John Calipari had to say at his weekly SEC teleconference:
Well first of all, we’ve had some coaches this year in our league do some unbelievable jobs like Mark Fox, Johnny Jones, Cunzo Martin, Kevin Stallings. The jobs they’ve done with their teams to get them to play the way they’re playing…I’m proud of what this team has done with all the injuries they’ve face, but we still have to fight.
On Nerlens Noel’s surgery:
It’s gonna be done here soon. His family are the ones who have all the information.
On playing Arkansas or Vanderbilt and practice this week:
I’m really concerned with our team and their consistency. We came off the Missouri win and laid two eggs. I normally give them today off, but I’m not now. We’re still inconsistent and that’s what i’m trying to get in these few days of practice. Let’s just know we’ll be consistent in our effort.
Either game against Arkansas or Vanderbilt is gonna be a tough one. Vanderbilt could have won either game, and Arkansas smashed us. So either team is gonna be a hard game for us.
On SEC Tournament:
I’m still not a fan of the (SEC) tournament and would rather just go to the next one, and I’m not a big fan of playing 3 games in 3 days.
On Willie Cauley Stein
He’s done fabulous and is growing his confidence everyday. If you want confidence from the coach – ‘You yell too much at me!’ – you can’t play. You stink. He’s building his own self-confidence. He is becoming a better and better player and becoming an integral part of what we’re doing. He’s getting better every game. I can see him have a 25(point)-15(rebound)-7-block night. His feet and hands so good. It’s just he gets tired out there.
You look at what he means to this team. Even with Nerlens Noel out, we’re still doing the same stuff we were doing. We’re still blocking shots. We’re still rebounding the ball, and we’re still doing the same stuff we did when Nerlens was here.
On the rest of the season:
At the end of the day, you’ve got to play basketball, and you’ve got to fight. We can’t have opposing teams walking off the floor and saying how soft we are. I believe we can advance as far as awe want to go, but we have to fight and sustain that kind of attitude and that kind of effort.
That about sums it up. We’ll be providing you with all of the latest updates of Kentucky, the SEC Conference Tournament, and UK”S NCAA hopes leading up to Selection Sunday.