ScarecrowGrin’s Final Four Game Previews: 1 Kentucky Wildcats Vs 1 Wisconsin Badgers
Kentucky (38-0) faced their toughest opponent all season in the Elite Eight as they were pushed to the limit by #3 Notre Dame (32-6). In a game that saw 12 lead changes and 20 ties, it took last second free throws from Andrew Harrison and a monster game from Karl-Anthony Towns (25 points 6 Rebounds) to pull off a very narrow victory 68-66. Wisconsin once again faced the Arizona Wildcats in the Elite Eight and once again found themselves advancing to the Final Four winning 85-78. The Badgers rode the shoulders of seven footer and AP Male Player of the Year Frank Kamisky’s 29 points and sharpshooting Sam Dekker’s 28 points. Wisconsin was flat out deadly from the 3 point Arc against Arizona (12 for 18). This is where Kentucky may find themselves in trouble. They had real problems trying to adjust to Notre Dames perimeter shooting. The bigs on Kentucky had trouble rotating on defense and sticking with their smaller guards. Dekker has been an offensive nightmare (21.7 PPG in tournament)and is showing no signs of slowing down from three (14 of 27 in tournament). Frank “The Tank” Kaminsky has been on an absolute tear stepping his game up (22.7 PPG in the tournament). These two are playing at a level that could put an end to the Wildcats magical run. Kentucky has shown signs of looking human, had moments where you believed they will lose, and out of nowhere these kids dig down, dig deep and pull off a victory…..as a team. This Kentucky Wildcats team is playing at such an elite and mature level it is amazing to think they are only in college. We have 9 Mcdonald All-American’s playing on one team and they all know their role. Not one player is averaging more than 11 PPG and/or averaging more than 25 MPG. This is a team that picks each other up and steps up when another falls. Karl-Anthony Towns is proving that he will be a top 3 NBA pick next year and the Harrison twins are leading the way with extreme floor generalship. Booker and Ulis have been phenomenal off the bench and Trey has been a huge compliment to Towns down low. But the real player Kentucky is going to need in this Final Four match up will be Willie Cauley-Stein. Cauley-Stein is a defensive animal.
Cauley-Stein was named a first team All-American off his defensive prowess alone. He was the only player selected that did not average double digits on the season (9.1 PPG). However, his defense is unmatched by any player in the NCAA. Cauley-Stein can defend and shut down any player in college and he will need to do so against Wisconsin’s bigs.
Karl-Anthony Towns is the future of the NBA and will prove so tonight against Wisconsin. He will showcase his skills for the world to see. He will elevate his scoring, his rebounding will be on point and he’s going to be the anchor to Kentucky’s chance of victory. Karl-Anthony Towns is going to earn the #1 Draft Pick with his play against the Badgers.
Kentucky 64 Wisconsin 58