Britain’s Calipari teases Tshiebwe, Wheeler after Missouri rout


Kentucky’s 83-56 victory over Missouri on Wednesday served as comedic fodder for John Calipari. Butts from his jokes were the mainstay of this season’s squad.

The British coach said he teased Sahvir Wheeler.

“I asked Sahvir, ‘What did you do on Christmas? To eat? Did you go to the gym? ‘ Calipari said. “He’s laughing.”

Calipari recalled Wheeler’s response, “To be honest, I really didn’t go to the gym. I have eaten.”

Wheeler’s 11 points and nine-to-one assists-to-turnover ratio against Missouri led to a telltale kicker.

“I said, ‘Keep eating, kid,’” Calipari said.

Although coaches, including Calipari, said Wheeler had to temper the urge to drive all the way to the basket because he is only 5-foot-9, the point guard continued to do so effectively.

Calipari gave the teamwork credit for taking the opposition big man out of the basket first.

As for Tshiebwe, he signed his 10th double-double, which tied him for the lead in Division I. He scored 13 points and took 20 rebounds. It was the fourth game in which he had had 20 or more rebounds.

But Calipari teased him about making just two of 10 shots.

“We could have shot 50%” if Tshiebwe had put in more shots, the British coach told his big man.

At what, Tshiebwe recognized the point. The UK has taken 43.1% of its photos. If Tshiebwe had done seven out of 10, the UK would have made 50.8%.

“It wasn’t my game,” Tshiebwe said, according to Calipari.

“Well,” said the British coach, he added, “the next one should be your game.”

LEX_20211229_KYvMIZZOU_4106.JPG
Sahvir Wheeler (2) waves to his teammates as he walks to the bench during the final two minutes of Wednesday’s win over Missouri. He had 11 points and nine assists. Silas walker swalker@herald-leader.com

High point

Coming into play on Wednesday, High Point was No. 285 on the NCAA NET rankings. It was a higher ranking than five previous British opponents: Albany (300), North Florida (305), Mount St. Mary’s (314), Robert Morris (324) and Central Michigan (341).

Ken Pomeroy had High Point at # 261 in his notes. The worst rating for an SEC team was Georgia at 186.

High Point lost 81-68 at Michigan State on Wednesday afternoon. This dropped the Panthers’ record to 6-7.

Neither team led by more than seven points in the game’s opening 33 minutes. High Point was leading 35-34 at halftime.

“Don’t think it’s just another game of chance,” Calipari said. “No, this is not the case.”

Michigan State, which was playing without two starters, passed High Point 38-25. High Point had three offensive rebounds in the game.

United Kingdom / GPA

The UK announced its athleticism not only met but surpassed the goal of a 3.0 GPA for a 19th consecutive semester. The overall GPA for the fall semester was 3.214, the UK said.

The women’s gymnastics team led the way with a cumulative GPA of 3.779. Among men’s teams, baseball had the highest cumulative average: 3,694.

Counting only stock players, men’s basketball (2,595) and soccer (2,553) were the only sports with an overall GPA of less than 3.0.

The UK has announced that 395 of its athletes have a GPA of 3.0 or better. Of these, 107 had a GPA of 4.0.

Thanks, Tubby

Calipari described the UK-High Point game as a way to show some appreciation for former Britain coach Tubby Smith.

“The most important thing is that I want him, his wife and the kids to understand that this place, these fans, this school, this state absolutely appreciate what he did while he was coaching here,” Calipari said. .

Look ahead

In January, Kentucky will play four games against teams ranked in the top 25 in this week’s Associated Press poll. Three of these matches take place on the field of the opponents.

This streak will begin with a game against LSU No.16 next Tuesday.

The UK will also play at No.14 in Tennessee on January 15, then later play at No.11 in Auburn on January 22 and at No.6 in Kansas on January 29.

February has four games against ranked teams: at home and away against No. 19 from Alabama, Tennessee and at home against LSU.

February also includes a game in Arkansas. Kentucky are 3-3 in their last six games at Bud Walton Arena.

Look further

On Wednesday, gaming site SportsBetting.ag put the ninth-best odds on Kentucky to win the national championship.

This made Gonzaga the favorite. Duke was the second choice. Baylor, Purdue and Kansas finished the five teams with the best chances of winning the title.

In women’s basketball, South Carolina was the favorite with UConn the second pick.

Louisville was tied for sixth best odds, while Kentucky was tied for 19th best.

Etc.

Mike Morgan and Jon Sundvold are expected to call Friday’s Kentucky-High Point game for the SEC network.

Jerry Tipton has covered Kentucky basketball from the 1981-82 season to the present day. He is a member of the United States Basketball Writers Association Hall of Fame.
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