Kentucky just did unspeakable things to Alabama.
Nine seconds into the opening possession, Jamal Murray slipped unguarded behind the Alabama defense and got a free slam dunk, while drawing a foul. That one play pretty much summed up the rest of the game. The Wildcats had fun out there, tossing up alley-oops, lane drives, and dunks to their hearts' content, while the Tide looked terrified to even be on the same court.
With some heroics from Retin Obasohan to make up for the ugly shots and airballs from the rest of the team, Alabama managed to keep an even score with Kentucky for the first 5 minutes of the game. Once Alabama reached 15 points, however, they decided that making baskets was overrated, and did not score for the next six and a half minutes. Even the points that broke that drought were just free throws, and it was another two minutes before Justin Coleman finally hit a shot with 30 seconds left in the half to get the Tide to 19. Obasohan, who apparently has an aversion to the teens, took a rebound with 5 seconds left in the game and outraced both the clock and the entire Kentucky squad to the other end of the court to make a buzzer beater layup. Alabama entered halftime down 33-21.
The second half, well, I'll put it this way: ESPN's play by play summary did not give a single video highlight for any of Alabama's possessions in the entire second half. Donta Hall did make a nice dunk off a rebound after Riley Norris missed a breakaway layup and Brandon Austin made a nice three pointer, but that was about the extent of it as Kentucky raced to a 25 point lead to end the game.
Retin Obasohan did everything in his power to keep Alabama in the game, scoring 29 points on an outstanding 70% shooting mark, and also was second on the team in rebounds and jumped higher than humanly possible to throw out a nasty shot block. Justin Coleman missed 8 of his 11 shots, but still made enough baskets to be second on the team in scoring with 8 points. Brandon Austin scored 6 points in garbage time, and nobody else on the team got more than 3.
Donta Hall, in limited playing time, still led the team with 8 rebounds due to his relentless motor and length, but still is not very good offensively at doing anything other than dunking. Either way, I like his effort.
Though the Alabama defense, aside from a few mental breakdowns, played decently well for most of the game, the offense was absolutely morbid. Alabama will likely have to win out the rest of the season to make the NCAA tournament, so Coach Johnson will have his work cut out for him to fix the offense by the time Auburn comes to town on Saturday.