For the second week straight, the No. 1 team in college basketball has fallen. A day in the wake of being named the AP Top 25’s No. 1 group, Kentucky, which gave preseason No. 1 Michigan State its first loss of the period seven days prior, fell in a dazzling 67-64 upset to Evansville.
All the additionally shocking: The Wildcats bombed on their home floor, where they hadn’t lost a nonconference game since 2017 when Kansas overturned them 79-73 as a component of the yearly SEC/Big 12 Challenge. It snaps a 52-game series of wins over unranked nonconference adversaries at home.
Kentucky shot a horrid 4-of-17 from the 3-point line and 37 percent from the floor in Tuesday’s misfortune to the Purple Aces.
Evansville, in the mean time, shot 38.3 percent from the floor and thumped down 9-of-30 endeavors from past the circular segment. It shut on a couple of Sam Cuncliffe free tosses in the last seconds to give Evansville a noteworthy lead, and a very late trey endeavor from Tyrese Maxey failed.
The win for Evansville marks a breathtaking homecoming for its mentor, Walter McCarty, a Kentucky former student who played for the Wildcats during the 1990s. He is in his subsequent season filling in as a lead coach at any level after spells as associate coach at the college level with Louisville and at the NBA level with the Indiana Pacers and Boston Celtics. He won a national title with Kentucky, and Tuesday, he put the success over his place of graduation in a similar classification feeling-wise as winning everything.
“Our guys stuck together, we executed, and we really trusted each other,” said McCarty after the game. “It was a team win. I’m very proud of our guys. We’ve got veteran players; I think we match up with a lot of teams well.”
Kentucky mentor John Calipari lauded Evansville after the game, saying they were “the tougher team” throughout the night and that Evansville was “better prepared” than Kentucky.
“They beat us,” said Calipari. “This wasn’t us giving them a game. They took it from us. They came into Rupp Arena, where not many people win, and they won a tough game.”
The Wildcats were 24.5-point top picks entering the game after a great 2-0 beginning to their season that incorporated the success over the Spartans. As per ESPN, that makes a tie for the third-biggest miracle in college basketball in the last 15 seasons. One of the other three surprises likewise included Kentucky when, in 2007, it tumbled to Gardner-Webb as 26 point top picks.