We all remember where we were when Marquis Teague threw the ball up, as the buzzer sounded at the end of the 2012 NCAA Title Game. We all remember where we were when Tubby Smith threw is hands up in the air, triumphantly, at the end of the 1998 NCAA Title Game. And we remember where we were when Tony Delk hit that three from the bench in 1996 against Syracuse. We all, collectively, remember the championships won, the championship moments, and those championship teams. But, Kentucky Basketball is more than just the championships. It’s all about those moments, those personal moments, that make Kentucky basketball as special to the Big Blue Nation as it is.
My personal favorite moment in UK Basketball history happened on January 25, 2003 in Tuscaloosa, Alabama. It’s not secret that the 2002-03 team is one of my favorite teams in school history and is one I think is ridiculously underrated by people. On this night vs. Bama, that team turned the corner and committed to defense. Against a Crimson Tide team that was ranked number 15 in the AP poll and the Cats had lost two straight against, Kentucky put on a defensive clinic that, only in retrospect, can be full appreciated. The Wildcats fell behind 8-4 early on, but then shut the door on the Tide. Kentucky held Alabama without a point for eight straight minutes and without a field goal nearly 12 minutes. Even though the Cats were up just 26-21 at the half, they had totally suffocated and frustrated. The Cats went on to win the game 63-46 and set themselves up for a run to the Elite Eight. It was the ninth win in a streak that wouldn’t see the Wildcats lose for nearly three months.
Since the summer is slow, there’s not much to do besides look ahead to next seasons and look back to past seasons. I’d like to share some of Big Blue Nation’s favorite Kentucky Basketball memories. Not the championship teams, not the comeback against LSU and not the Christian Laettner shot. Drop me a line at [email protected] or tweet me at @tbrown_80 to share your favorite Big Blue Memories.
Special thanks to bigbluehistory.net .