clock menu more-arrow no yes mobile

Filed under:

Kentucky upended by Ole Miss: Turning point in the season?

Chris Warren's 25-foot jumper with a mere 2.9 second left in regulation lifted Ole Miss over No. 10 Kentucky Tuesday night in front of a fairly full Tad Smith Coliseum.

I'm sure some of you are frustrated over the win, however. This is the expectations we had going into the season. Knocking off top 25 teams and piecing together the best conference record in a decade on the backs of senior leaders Chris Warren and Zach Graham.

Kentucky, undoubtedly, is going to be LOAAAAAADDDDEEEEED next season. I fear the return trip to Lexington more than a prostate exam. Brandon Knight, Terrance Jones and Doron Lamb will all be a year older plus the Wildcats will have a top 5 recruiting class added to the roster.

The Rebel crowd partially got loud enough to knock the swagger of the young Wildcats Tuesday. What the game came down to was making enough plays down the stretch to snatch victory – it's what Warren's shot did.

But did that same shot and outcome lift the hopes of the entire season with regards to postseason hopes and an SEC West title?

Look at the case of the Alabama Crimson Tide this year. It sunk to low depths in non-conference play losing to the likes of St. Peter's (maybe this is a Jackson private school?). 

The Tide outlasted Kentucky in Tuscaloosa and have since reeled off three SEC victories in a row including a 14-point win over Mississippi State in Starkville. Alabama now sits at 6-1 in the SEC and have even garnered some respect in bracketology posts nationally as a possible 11 or 12 seed.

So could the same happen for Ole Miss? The Rebels' do not have nearly as many bad losses as the Tide (who also lost to sub .500 squads Iowa and Seton Hall this season).

Ole Miss is in a position to make a run through its final nine game conference schedule. Home matches against LSU, Auburn, Alabama and Arkansas could bring three or four more wins while road trips to Arkansas, MSU, Alabama, South Carolina and Auburn likely will not be as fruitful.

Right now, I still don't see this team making a vast turnaround and winning its last nine games with consistent play. In fact, it's likely the trip to Fayettenam Saturday will be one of a very frustrating loss.

But the Kentucky win was absolutely sweet. I picked against Ole Miss, which I rarely ever do. I was happy to be wrong.