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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Kentucky basketball
Kentucky Wildcats guard Davion Mintz ( Credit: Jordan Prather-USA TODAY Sports) /

Three off the Wildcat bench Collins, Toppin, Mintz solid and opportunistic

Calipari has made it clear minutes are to be had more than in most years, but it’s pretty clear after Tuesday the solid threesome in Daimion Collins, Jacob Toppin, and Davion Mintz bring instant energy and high flying action.

The coach said before the game he wanted to get Mintz some early minutes and it paid off. He addressed it after the game.

"“Today, I went with Davion because I wanted him to get his wheels under him. Davion ended up with five rebounds. This kid just rebounds the ball.”"

When starters Tshiebwe and TyTy Washington headed to the bench early on with a pair of fouls each this threesome in some capacity jolted the energy level and rims to life.

Collins the human pogo stick soared for more dunks and altered shots while Toppin showed no sign of his injured shoulder slamming home dunks of his own and altering Jaguar shots right and left. Mintz is finding his shot from outside and too crashed the boards.

When Kentucky needed runs to jumpstart its offense and slow the Jaguars it came from this trio.

Collins is looking more developed each game and had eight points on 4 of 5 field goals, pulled down six rebounds, and blocked three shots.

Toppin doesn’t always need to score it’s the other disruptive play that we need from him. Tallying only two points he added six rebounds and four blocked shots. Calipari praised the energy Toppin brought.

Outside Mintz got UK going behind the three-point line after the Wildcats missed their first eight tries. He finished 2 of 7 threes for nine points, rebounds, and an assist.

Solid contribution whenever the starts get into trouble as they again did tonight.