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2015-16 Season Analytical Writings
This past Saturday, the SEC teams played a full slate of seven basketball games, bringing the total for the season to 12 games. Of these 12 games, the visiting team has won nine times. One of those rare home wins occurred at Rupp Arena where the Wildcats handed Texas A&M its worst SEC defeat ever, a 42 point pole axing to advance to 12-2 overall and 2-0 in the SEC. Texas A&M having lost to Tennessee in their first game at College Station fell to 0-2 in the SEC.
The Cats' game against the Aggies was clearly their strongest single game performance of this season with a game ANE of 0.614 points per possession, surpassing the previous best game against Arizona State. Meanwhile, the Arkansas Razorbacks got out of Knoxville on Saturday with a four point win over Tennessee to even their SEC record at 1-1 following their earlier home court loss to Florida.
ARKANSAS enters the game with a 12-2; 1-1 record. The Razorbacks lost at #34 Minnesota in November by 14, and the Razorbacks' most impressive win has been over #42 Houston by 12. Arkansas enters this game with an ANE of 0.162 points per possession against a strength of schedule of 0.07 ppp (#162). The Cats enter this game with an ANE of 0.337 ppp against a strength of schedule of 0.0429 ppp (#49). The ANE analysis indicates a Kentucky win by 19 points, 87-68 at apace of 78 possessions. This would produce game efficiencies of 1.117 ppp and 0.873 ppp. Pomeroy sees this game in Kentucky's favor by 16 points,92-76 at a pace of 77 possessions.
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Coach Calipari starts Edrice (BAM) Adebayo, De'Aaron Fox, Malik Monk, Isaiah Briscoe, and Wenyen Gabriel.
Kentucky controls the opening tip and Malik Monk hits an 18 foot jump shot. After the Cats score following a steal to move on top 4-0, Arkansas scores 7 straight to take a 3 point lead, 7-4. The Cats then outscore the Razorbacks 7-2 on a jumper from the free throw line and a 3 pointer by Derek Willis to lead 11-9 at the under 16 media timeout. In the second segment, the Cats again extend their lead to 4 points, but Arkansas trims the lead to 1 point, 16-15, at the under 12 media timeout. Isaac Humphries will have a pair of free throws after the break.
Isaac Humphries makes both free throws, and after De'Aaron Fox hits a jump shot from the free throw line, the Cats lead by a game high 5 points, 20-15, but the Razorbacks take advantage of 3 consecutive Cat turnovers to score 8 straight points and move on top by a game high 3 points, 23-20, forcing Coach Calipari to take a timeout with 8:28 remaining in the first half. Both teams are shooting 50% from the floor, but the Razorbacks have an advantage on the offensive glass, 5-4, and turnovers 2-4 to build their 3 point lead.
After the timeout, the Cats commit their 4 th straight turnover on an offensive foul by Wenyen Gabriel, his 3 rd foul of the game. A pair of free throws following a foul by Derek Willis allows the Razorbacks to move on top by 4 points. De'Aaron Fox makes a driving layup and completes a 3 point play to trim the Arkansas lead to 1 point, 24-23. After the timeout, the Cats outscore the Razorbacks 7-0 to take a 6 point lead, 30-24 with 4:54 prompting Arkansas to take a timeout. After the timeout, the Razorbacks fail to score, and Isaiah Briscoe is fouled on the rebound. After Isaiah Briscoe's free throws go down, the Cats lead by 8, 32-24 at the under 4 media timeout. The Cats have outscored the Hogs 12-0 after being down by 4, 24-20 to go up by 8, 32-24. In the final segment, Arkansas trims the lead to 3 points, 41-38 at the half.
The Cats scored 41 points on 37 possessions, 1.108 points per possession, and ARKANSAS managed their 38 points on 37 possessions, 1.027 ppp. The Cats made 50.0% (15-30) of their first half shots, including 3-10 (30.0%) from outside the arc. ARKANSAS managed to make 40.6% (13-32) of their first half shots, including 2-7 (28.6%) from outside the arc.
The Cats made 8-12 free throws (66.7%) and ARKANSAS made 10-12 (83.3%) in the first half.
The Cats committed 7 turnovers while forcing ARKANSAS to commit 4.
On the Boards, the Cats outrebounded the Hogs 19-16 in the first half, and each team grabbed 5 offensive rebounds and each team scored 10 second chance points in the first half. The Cats secured 31.3% of their misses and allowed ARKANSAS to grab 26.3% of their misses as second chance opportunities.
The Cats open the second half with Derek Willis in place of Wenyen Gabriel. The Cats commit their 8 th turnover on the opening possession. The Cats build their lead to a game high 9 points, 53-44, and Arkansas stops the small UK run with a layup to trim the lead to 7, 53-46 at an Arkansas timeout. After the timeout, Arkansas starts in a defensive press, which the Cats easily break for a layup and a 9 point lead at the under 16 media timeout. In the second segment, the Cats extend their lead to a game high 13 points, and at the under 12 media timeout, the Cats lead by 11, 65-54 and De'Aaron Fox will have two free throws after the timeout.
At the under 8 media timeout, the Cats lead by 14, 76-62, and Malik Monk will have a pair of free throws after the timeout. At the under 4 media timeout, the Cat lead has expanded to 22 points, 88-66, and Isaiah Briscoe will have one free throw to complete a 3 point play after the break.
It's Calipari time with 1:41 remaining and the Cats leading 92-68 on 70 possessions. Coach Calipari empties his bench with 0:21 remaining and the Cats leading 97-71 on 72 possessions. Cats win 97-71 on 72 possessions.
UK scored its 97 points on 71 possessions (1.347 ppp) for the game, and ARKANSAS scored its 71 points on 72 possessions (0.986 ppp).
Kentucky won the battle of the boards 44-28, and Kentucky won the battle of the offensive glass 15-9. Kentucky used its 15 second chance possessions to score 21 second chance points, and ARKANSAS used its 9 second chance possessions to score 13 second chance points. ARKANSAS had an offensive efficiency of 0.806 ppp on its 72 first chance possessions and 1.444 ppp for its 9 second chance possessions. UK had 1.056 ppp on its 72 first chance possessions and 1.400 ppp on its 15 second chance possessions. With respect to the offensive rebounding, UK grabbed 44.1% of its misses as offensive rebounds while ARKANSAS was able to convert 23.7% of its misses into bonus possessions with offensive rebounds.
UK hit well from the free throw line in this game, making 28-40 [70.0%]. ARKANSAS made 17-21 [81.0%] for the game. Field goal shooting for UK was 32-61 overall [53.3%] and 5-19 from long range [26.3%]. For ARKANSAS , their field goal shooting from inside the arc was 21-47 [44.7%] and from long range, ARKANSAS hit 4-16 [25.0%].
The Cats committed 9 turnovers, one for every 8.0 possessions. The Cats forced 8 ARKANSAS turnovers, one for every 9.0 possessions.
Next Game On Schedule: Tuesday evening, January 10, 2017 at 7:00 pm at Nashville against Vanderbilt in the sixteenth regular season game and fourth SEC game of the 2016-17 season.
Submitted by Richard Cheeks
Submitted by Richard Cheeks