Kentucky Basketball uninspired effort fends off pesky Southern in final tuneup

Kentucky Wildcats forward Oscar Tshiebwe (credit: Jordan Prather-USA TODAY Sports)
Kentucky Wildcats forward Oscar Tshiebwe (credit: Jordan Prather-USA TODAY Sports) /
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The Kentucky basketball team took that last bite out of a creampuff seven-game schedule but not till Southern University nearly gave them indigestion before falling 77-64 in the Unity Series game at Rupp Arena.

Former Wildcat Sean Woods brought his Jaguar team to Lexington and his players seemed inspired to play for their coach at his alma mater while the current Wildcats and fans have grown weary and uninspired by the slate of opponents they have played at home since losing their opening game to Duke.

While there was little doubt the No. 10 ranked team needed time to heal and get healthy while off the past eight days we still don’t have a clear picture of just how good this team is capable of being when they finally step up in competition and size Saturday at Notre Dame.

Kentucky basketball welcomes Woods home but truly needs better competition

For the first time since the November 9th tipoff game against the Blue Devils where they fought valiantly before falling 79-71, the Wildcats will now run a gauntlet of December games including the Irish, Ohio State, and Louisville the next three Saturday’s.

While it was great for fans to see Woods back on the Rupp Arena floor where he tormented opposing teams while wearing a Kentucky uniform, his Southern team was the fifth team outside the top 300 in the latest KenPom rankings.

Oscar Tshiebwe led Kentucky despite sitting on the bench much of the game due to foul trouble. He finished with 23 points and 11 rebounds, four blocks, and three steals.

So what are the quick takeaways from the game? Kind of the same feeling after the previous six.