John Calipari fumes about schedule as Kentucky falls to 1-6 after loss to Louisville

Jack Baer
·Writer
·2 min read
Kentucky head coach John Calipari yells instructions to players in the first half of an NCAA college basketball game against North Carolina, Saturday, Dec. 19, 2020, in Cleveland. (AP Photo/Tony Dejak)
Kentucky's season is not going as planned. (AP Photo/Tony Dejak)

One-and-done doesn’t just describe Kentucky’s preferred variety of recruit right now; it also sums up the Wildcats’ record.

Kentucky fell to 1-6 on Saturday after a close loss to rival Louisville, losing 62-59 after an attempt at a game-tying 3-pointer from Brandon Boston Jr. clanked off the rim as the buzzer sounded. As a team, Kentucky shot only 34.5 percent from the field.

The loss gives Kentucky much more than just the ignominy of falling to their in-state rival. The 1-6 record remains Kentucky’s worst since the 1926-27 season, and the team’s six-game losing streak is its longest under head coach John Calipari.

Kentucky’s schedule has been rough

The preseason top-10 team began its season with a run-of-the-mill domination of Morehead State, but soon hit hard times with a shocking loss against Richmond. A close-enough 65-62 loss against current No. 3 Kansas could at least be seen as encouraging, but then the bottom of the Wildcats’ season dropped out again with a loss to previously winless Georgia Tech.

Losses to Notre Dame, North Carolina and now Louisville followed, and it seems that Calipari is now lamenting putting so many Power Five opponents on Kentucky’s schedule:

Calipari later elaborated that he should have arranged for some softer opponents earlier in the Wildcats’ schedule, via Forbes’ Adam Zagoria:

“Listen, we should’ve played games up front that we had a chance to win, four or five of them and then played four or five of the others,” Calipari said. “Not eight hard games and we’ve still got Texas left who’s like 10th in the country.”

He said the schedule “was just dumb.”

Of course, Kentucky’s apparently unfortunate schedule isn’t entirely Calipari’s doing. Richmond and Georgia Tech weren’t exactly supposed to be challenges, and the Kansas game was part of the team’s annual participation in the Champions Classic. It’s even weird that Calipari is lamenting his schedule after the Louisville game, since that too is an annual rivalry game late in the Wildcats’ non-conference schedule.

Fortunately for Calipari, any further complaints about the schedule can be redirected to the SEC, as Kentucky is set to begin its conference schedule the next time it takes the floor.

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