Since doing a Q&A with The UConn Blog yielded such good dividends, It was clearly a good idea to do the same with A Sea Of Blue, SB Nation's Kentucky Blog and their managing editor, Glenn Logan. Glenn is obviously a good guy, as he mentioned that he'll drink a Natty Light in our honor, win or lose - since it was, after all, his first college beer. I answered some questions for him as well, so be sure to check it out..
Recent Kentucky teams have been accused of being too inexperienced to win a National Championship. Does this team seem different?
Well, if UK loses before the final, that charge will be leveled again, and who could gainsay it? In all honesty, winning an NCAA Tournament against more experienced players with a team this young would be an impressive feat, but it boils down to the old talent vs. experience argument that will probably forever remain academic. No matter what happens this year, freshman-dominated teams winning the NCAA will probably continue to be the exception rather than the rule.
But this team does seem different. They play with a cohesiveness and maturity that seem to belie their actual experience. Mainly, that's due to the type of personalities on the team, but Kentucky partisans would be naive to think that their youth won't show up at some point. We can only hope it doesn't cost them dearly.
Kentucky has mostly been a juggernaut this season. What weaknesses are there for teams to exploit and what kind of team would give them the most trouble?
As far as I can tell, there are no weaknesses, only things that it does better than others. Like every other team in America, shot selection is important, and if Kentucky goes cold, they can be defeated. More physical teams have had greater success against UK, particularly inside, so perhaps that could be construed as a weakness.
But this team is really good at what I call, "just plain basketball," which essentially boils down to offensive and defensive efficiency. When they play the game the right way -- hard-nosed defense and patient offense, they are really tough. The one thing they haven't had to do much of, and that was a major contributor to their first loss, was play without Anthony Davis a lot.
Over the season, it looks like the Wildcats have been using only 7 players at more than 7 minutes a game. Is there any concern with fatigue? Other than Davis (who seems to rarely be in foul trouble) which player would be most hurtful for Kentucky to have in foul trouble?
I look at it this way -- if UK can run with North Carolina at their pace and not be fatigued, then nobody can fatigue Kentucky. Been there, done that.
Davis, on the other hand, is a player UK simply isn't used to playing without much. When Kentucky has had to do that, they looked a lot more vulnerable, although in every case but one (though there haven't been many), Kentucky has managed to win anyway. Michael Kidd-Gilchrist also seems to have a very negative impact on UK when he has foul trouble - our loss to Vanderbilt in the SEC Final featured him fouling out.
In short, Big Blue fans don't worry as much about fatigue as we do fouls on Davis.
Calipari's style of recruiting is a lot different than say... Tubby Smith's (mostly 4 year players). Which do you prefer?
Well, in today's basketball environment, I prefer Calipari's. In the environment of 1998, I might have preferred Smith's. To be honest, though, every coach in America with the exception of a very few have adopted a philosophy that features recruiting the best players they can. It just so happens that Kentucky can recruit better players than most, and stand a good chance of signing them.
Calipari's greatest selling point, notwithstanding the NBA's "one and done" rule, is the fact that he is able to get good players to play together for their mutual benefit, both before and after the season. Many people misconstrue this, but then again, they simply don't want to know the truth -- they are happy with the bill of goods they have been sold by the media and those who are disdainful of the fact that Calipari keeps the interests of basketball players ahead of his own.
Seriously, what's up with Anthony Davis' unibrow? It's gotta be just an intimidation tactic or a "I'm still getting laid more than you even with this thing" statement at this point, right?
Fear the brow, baby. Brow down before us. All your brow are belong to us! Beware the Uniblocker, he'll blow up your game!
Davis' brow is like the mole on Cindy Crawford's face - the flaw that makes him perfect. Plus, it's really good for T-shirt sales.