Auburn players saw Kentucky fan's classless Chuma Okeke banner, used it as motivation
Shortly before tipoff of Sunday’s Elite Eight showdown between Kentucky and Auburn, a classless banner hung by a Kentucky fan making fun of Chuma Okeke’s ACL tear surfaced.
It’s safe to say that image made its way through Auburn’s locker room, and the Tigers came out with a purpose, earning a huge 77-71 overtime win to advance to the Final Four.
After the game, senior G Bryce Brown admitted that he and his teammates had seen the picture, and used it as motivation (via KentuckySportsRadio.com):
“I saw that this morning,” Brown, who scored 24 points, said. “I think that was just disrespectful and a slap in the face. I’m so glad we came out and battled the whole entire 40 minutes for him. I know he’s happy, I know he’s proud of us. But if he was out there, it would have made a huge difference. I’m glad we were probably able to shut that up now. I didn’t like that all and definitely used it as motivation.”
When you’re facing a team as hot as Auburn was entering Sunday, you don’t want to poke the bear. That’s what that Kentucky fan did, though, and it played a part in the Wildcats’ loss.