Cats Rally Around Calipari, Prepare For Boston U

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Cats Rally Around Calipari, Prepare For Boston U

Post  BestdamnUKfanperiod on Tue Nov 30, 2010 3:17 am

Cats Rally Around Calipari, Prepare For Boston U

John Calipari joined his team shortly after they began practice Monday afternoon and is expected to coach Kentucky when they take on Boston University on Tuesday, according to officials from the university.

Calipari's mother, Donna Calipari, died Sunday following a long battle with cancer. She was 74. Calipari left the team after Sunday's practice to meet family in Charlotte, N.C., where she lived. He returned to Lexington Monday afternoon.

"We don't have a leader on the team yet so he's definitely our leader and it's hard to see him going through problems," Josh Harrellson said.

As news of her death spread, a movement started online for fans to wear black to Tuesday's game at Rupp Arena.

Calipari's players are also prepared to rally around their coach.

"It's very hard but I'm sure he handled it well and he'll try to coach this team the best way he could," DeAndre Liggins said.

The Cats take on Boston University at 7:00 on Tuesday. It will mark the first time in 18 days the Cats have played at home. Their last game at Rupp Arena was an 88-65 win over ETSU in the first game of the season on Nov. 12.

"Today I was just talking to Darius [Miller] and I said it's going to feel great just to play at Rupp Arena again." Harrellson said.

The Cats are 3-1 since last playing at home. The one loss was in their last game, an 84-67 blowout to Connecticut in the finals of the Maui Invitational. Afterwards, John Calipari accused his team of playing selfish. Liggins and Harrellson agreed.

"They made their run at us and everyone felt like 'I'm going to try to do my own thing' and that's not team basketball and that's not winning basketball," Liggins said.

The players insist that they get along with each other. They say the problems have more to do with getting used to playing beside each other than getting along with each other.

"The guys had probably never been down that much at half," Harrellson said of the 21 point halftime deficit the Cats faced against UConn. "I guess in a way they didn't know how to recuperate from that and try to come out in the second half and play like a team."

Tipoff against Boston is set for 7:00. The Terriers [4-3] were picked to finish first in the American East conference.

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