Kentucky basketball and football know both sides of a ‘superteam’ coin

July 7, 2018 - Basketballs

It was somehow wise that DeMarcus “Boogie” Cousins was a one person, of all people, who rekindled a “superteam” discuss this week when a former Kentucky core agreed to a one-year deal with a two-time fortifying universe champion Golden State Warriors.

Unfair! So a foe cried. The Warriors already possess an annoyance of cache with 4 genuine all-stars in Stephen Curry, Kevin Durant, Klay Thompson and Draymond Green. Adding an all-star core — even one entrance off a ruptured Achilles — to a core 4 that has prisoner a NBA pretension 3 of a final 4 years seems officious criminal.

How is a rest of a joining ostensible to compete?

Kentucky entertainment knows that doubt from both sides.

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UK basketball knows all about a “superteam” label, one it has ragged on countless occasions around a self-proclaimed standing as a biggest tradition in a story of college basketball.

And UK football knows about this “superteam” stuff, as well, yet from a most opposite perspective.

Kentucky basketball has been a normal “have,” while Kentucky football has been a normal “have-not.”

And as so mostly happens in college sports, a abounding get richer, generally when it comes to college football. Just take a demeanour during a final 20 years of the college football inhabitant championship game contra a 20-year story of a college basketball inhabitant championship game.

For football, that means initial a BCS (1998-2013) followed by a stream College Football Playoff (2014-17). For basketball, that means, of course, a NCAA Men’s Basketball Tournament inhabitant pretension game.

Just 17 opposite schools have competed in a college football inhabitant championship over a past 20 years (1998-2017). Alabama has been there 6 times. Florida State, Ohio State and Oklahoma have been there 4 times. USC has reached a inhabitant pretension 3 times.

Meanwhile, 22 opposite schools have reached college basketball’s inhabitant championship diversion over a past 20 years (1999-2018). No propagandize has been there some-more than 4 times, with Connecticut, Duke and North Carolina relating that number. Florida and Kansas have reached a pretension diversion 3 times.

Kentucky basketball has been there twice in a past dual decades, yet if we extended a time line a Wildcats have done 5 pretension diversion appearances in a past 23 years.

And these days, Kentucky Coach John Calipari operates on an NBA-like “superteam” pitch. The recruits are giveaway agents, a la Cousins. Great players wish to play with good players who share a common idea — removing to a NBA. Highly rival practices urge your skills. The pro-style enlightenment prepares we for a veteran lifestyle. And we only competence win a title, too.

If a handful of players can change a college basketball program’s fortunes, college football is most some-more of a numbers game. It takes some-more than one star actor or one star-studded recruiting category to spin around a program. It takes two, three, 4 classes to make a inhabitant impact.

Remember a calendar Howard Schnellenberger gave when he arrived during Louisville after winning a inhabitant pretension during Miami — His “collision course” with greatness? Fifteen years, pronounced a pipe-smoking Schellenberger. That’s how prolonged it would take to build a inhabitant championship program.

Related stories from Lexington Herald Leader

DeMarcus Cousins among ex-UK stars on a pierce with something to prove

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UK Sports Mailbag: Should NBA have blocked DeMarcus Cousins from signing with Warriors?

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Kentucky football has a double whammy of perplexing to build a group while confronting a “superteams” of a SEC. Besides Alabama’s half-dozen appearances, Florida (two), LSU (twice), Auburn (twice), Georgia (once) and Tennessee (once) have all been only one win divided from a inhabitant pretension in a final 20 years. All though Georgia have won it during slightest once.

So 35 percent (14-of-40) of a title-game slots have been filled by SEC schools. Compare that to stream schools in a ACC (nine slots), Big Ten (five), Pac-12 (five), Big 12 (four) and eccentric (one).

Over a past decade, UK football has a misfortune record in a SEC, only 21-59. It hasn’t posted a winning discussion symbol given 1977. There’s a reason for that. If Kentucky basketball is mostly a “superteam” Kentucky football is mostly personification a “superteam.”

SEC football 2008-17

A.J. Rose rushed for 134 yards and 3 touchdowns as a Blue (offense) kick a White (defense) 45-32 in a Kentucky football team’s annual Blue-White Game.

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