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Calipari not surprised by balance in SEC

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Calipari not surprised by balance in SEC

Post  BestdamnUKfanperiod on Fri Jan 21, 2011 5:23 pm

Calipari not surprised by balance in SEC

Kentucky coach John Calipari isn’t surprised by the obvious balance in the Southeastern Conference.
Following its 81-74 overtime win over Arkansas Wednesday night, South Carolina — Kentucky’s next opponent — sits atop the Eastern division, while Alabama, which defeated the Wildcats earlier this week is the top team in the West.
Prior to Tuesday’s games, eight teams were tied for first place in both divisions.
“It speaks about the balance of the league,” Calipari said Monday. “People wanted to say South Carolina and Alabama weren’t that good or that LSU’s not — now we got them pretty good, but the reality of it is they’re 2-1. Think about that. And Mississippi’s lost a couple games that they easily could have won. They had Mississippi State beat dead to rights, and they somehow slip, and they had Florida at Florida. It’s crazy. It’s what the league’s supposed to be — a bunch of good teams fighting it out and playing.”
The Gamecocks defeated Vanderbilt in overtime (83-75) and topped Florida (72-69) in Gainesville. The team’s only conference setback was a 57-47 setback to Alabama on Jan. 12.
Southern Carolina coach Darrin Horn hasn’t been surprised by his team’s ability to win close games to open conference play.
“I’m not totally shocked by it,” he said. “It is impressive, I think. At the same time, we try to recruit guys that want to be in that situation. A lot of that stuff late game is experience. We had a couple of bad plays and some defensive lapses, but I think we have a group of young men that really want to win.
“You can tell by some of the little plays that are made. They have done a good job of that without question. But, I am not totally surprised by it because we have the guys that want to be in that situation.”

Beckham joins Wildcats

Twany Beckham, a transfer from Mississippi State, has enrolled at Kentucky this semester and will walk on the men’s basketball team.
Beckham, a 6-foot-5 guard from Louisville, will be a junior when he’s eligible to play next year. He played two seasons for the Bulldogs.
He saw action in 33 games in his freshman season in 2008-09 and after redshirting in his sophomore year, he started five games this year prior to the start of the second semester.
Beckham played at Louisville Ballard where he was a three-year starter for and helped pace the Bruins to an 86-16 (.843) and two appearances in the Sweet 16.
Beckham can practice with the team for the remainder of this season, but will not be eligible to play until the end of the first semester next fall.
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