Kentucky still has 'work to do' to make NCAA Tournament, per ESPN analyst
Kentucky’s NCAA Tournament résumé is starting to take shape, but there are some questions that still need to be answered.
The Wildcats are in the “work to do” section of ESPN’s “Bubble Watch” analysis, which was updated on Tuesday morning. Kentucky enters this week with a 16-7 record overall and a 7-3 mark in SEC play.
Here’s some analysis on Kentucky from ESPN’s John Gasaway:
From the opening tip of the Saint Peter’s game in last year’s round of 64, it has been a bumpy and unpredictable road for Kentucky. The low point came when a 26-point defeat at Alabama was followed by a far more shocking three-point loss at home to South Carolina (which still represents the Gamecocks’ only SEC win). In the next outing, UK reached its high point in the form of a seven-point victory at Tennessee. As we said, unpredictable. In mock brackets, the 16-7 Wildcats are a familiar presence in “last four in” territory. Two games remain to be played against Arkansas, as well as one each against the Volunteers, Auburn, Florida and Mississippi State. A bid appears likely but is by no means assured.
For context, the only “locks” to make the Tournament per ESPN from the SEC are Alabama and Tennessee. Auburn and Missouri landed in the “should be in” tier while Arkansas, Florida, Texas A&M and Mississippi State joined Kentucky in the “work to do” section.
While Kentucky did stumble early in the year, the Wildcats have been better lately. They’ve won 6 SEC games in a row and their only loss since Jan. 10 came against Kansas in the SEC/Big 12 Challenge.
Kentucky is a No. 10 seed in Joe Lunardi’s latest bracket projection.
The Wildcats host Arkansas in a big game for both programs like Tuesday night.