Kendall's Take: Dawgs take on Cats

ATHENS - Josh Kendall breaks down Georgia's basketball game with Kentucky.

Georgia vs. Kentucky
Time/place: Today, 8 p.m., Rupp Arena, Lexington, Ky.
Broadcast: Jefferson-Pilot television
Records: Georgia is 14-9, 4-6 SEC; Kentucky is 15-9, 5-5 SEC

About Georgia: Junior guard Levi Stukes continues to lead the Bulldogs in scoring with 12.5 points per game. … Freshman guard Mike Mercer appears to have cemented his spot. He has started the last three games and has scored in double figures twice in that time span. More importantly, he is providing a defensive presence. … Despite Dennis Felton's emphasis on defense, the Bulldogs are 11th in the conference in scoring defense, allowing 70.7 points per game.

About Kentucky: The Wildcats have lost three straight, just like they had the last time they played the Bulldogs. "It's a coincidence that I don't enjoy," Georgia coach Dennis Felton said. "When you've lost some games, you get more and more motivated. We're certainly not going to catch them napping or relaxed." … Uncharacteristically, the Wildcats have lost four games at home this year. "I don't spend too much energy or time thinking about what it takes to win in Rupp Arena," said Felton, who won his first game in Rupp as the Bulldogs' coach. "I think it's all about what it takes to beat Kentucky. Kentucky is the opponent, not the building."

Scouting report: Shooting will be the key tonight. The last time these two teams met, a 69-55 win for Kentucky in Athens on Jan. 17, the Wildcats did it well and Georgia did not. Kentucky shot 56 percent from the floor in that game, and three of their guards scored in double digits. Meanwhile, Georgia shot 35.8 percent. The Bulldogs also had three guards in double figures but got a total of zero points and three rebounds from their post players. An easy way to increase their shooting percentage will be getting some high percentage shots inside. Look for Georgia to remain committed to at least throwing the ball inside each trip down the floor. "We were disgusted with our lack of willingness to throw the ball in there" (in the first meeting), Felton said.

Up next: Georgia vs. Vanderbilt, 8 p.m., Saturday; Kentucky at South Carolina, Saturday, 1:30 p.m.

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