University of Kentucky freshman Nerlens Noel, continuing his recent trend, did the unthinkable again Tuesday night in the Wildcats' biggest game of the season. On a night when teammates Kyle Wiltjer, Archie Goodwin and Alex Poythress combined to score 65 points, grab 20 rebounds and sink 22 of 39 field-goal attempts in an 87-74 upset of 16th-ranked Mississippi, Noel managed to steal the show despite scoring just two points.
That happens when you block a school-record 12 shots and single handedly put a lid on the opponent's goal in crunch time, swatting five shots in the final four minutes while playing with four fouls. UK clung to a four-point lead with 3:54 to go when Noel crammed Murphy Holloway's dunk attempt back in his face. With the lead at six 19 seconds later, Noel denied Reginald Buckner's slam.
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 February 23, 1970, Dan Issel scored 47 points against Alabama.
- On February 23, 2019, with an 80-53 victory over Auburn, 10th-year head coach John Calipari moves past Joe B. Hall for the second most victories by a UK head coach in program history. He trails only the Baron of the Bluegrass, Adolph Rupp.