First-year coach John Calipari, as much beloved in the Bluegrass State as he is disliked in Memphis for making off with almost the entire U of M recruiting class when he switched jobs last spring, is on the verge of delivering Kentucky's 44th Southeastern Conference championship. The No. 2 Wildcats, 27-1 overall and 12-1 in the SEC's Eastern Division after Thursday's 82-61 victory over South Carolina, can clinch a tie for the league title today when they play at Tennessee. A UK win or a Vanderbilt loss at Arkansas will give the ‘Cats a share of the title, and if both happen, Kentucky will win it outright with two regular-eason games left next week.
Walter Cornett, of Glendale, Kentucky, is the owner and operator of Walter's Wildcat World. He founded WildcatWorld.com in 1998 making it one of the oldest Kentucky basketball fan sites in operation today.
On This Day In UK Basketball History
- On March 2, 1970, Dan Issel scored 42 points against Auburn.
- On March 2, 1991, before a crowd of 24,310, the then-largest crowd in Rupp arena history, the Wildcats closed out the 1990-91 season with a 22-6 overall record. Although UK was ineligible for the SEC title because of probation, the Wildcats secured the best record in the league (14-4) with a 114-93 win over Auburn to end its two-year probation. A ceremony and parade followed.
- On March 2, 1996, with a 101-63 victory over Vanderbilt in Rupp Arena on Senior Day, UK became the first team in 40 years to finish with a perfect record in the SEC, a 16-0 sweep. It was the Wildcats’ 25th win in a row, tying the school record for consecutive wins in a season. Two games later, they set the new record at 27 games.
- On March 2, 2012, Darius Miller, in his final performance at Rupp Arena, led Kentucky in scoring with 17 points on Senior Night in a 30-point win over Georgia.