Scout.com/Jeff Drummond

Selection Sunday Quotes from Kentucky Wildcats' Coach John Calipari

Kentucky coach John Calipari addressed the media Sunday at his Lexington home shortly after the Wildcats received a No. 4 seed in the East Region of the NCAA Tournament.

The Wildcats (26-8) will face No. 13 seed Stony Brook on Thursday night in Des Moines, Iowa, to begin their NCAA record 55th NCAA tournament appearance.

Stony Brook (26-6) claimed both the America East regular-season and tournament titles. The Sea Wolves are led by three-time America East Player of the Year Jameel Warney. The senior power forward scored a career-high 43 points in the league's championship game against Vermont.

The tradition-packed East Region also includes North Carolina as the No. 1 seed, Xavier as the No. 2 seed, West Virginia as the No. 3 seed, Indiana as the No. 5 seed and Notre Dame as the No. 6 seed. 

The following is a transcript of Calipari's comments on Sunday:

On UK's tournament selection and the potential matchups in its region …

“Texas A&M as a three (seed) is another way of doing it. Who we’re playing, those teams are, you know, we knew West Virginia would be there. Indiana, North Carolina and we got the toughest path. Stony Brook, I watched that game. They’re good. They’re good. They’ve got a big kid that had 40 points in a game against Vermont, and like I said, I just happened to be laying there and I watched some of the game. But this is how it is. It’s every year the same. Need to look at some other teams. They got a great path and we’ve got this, you know. I bet you they’ll try to switch over and put the Warriors in there. I don’t know if they can make a late call, but we’re playing. Let’s show up. Where is it? Where are we playing? I thought it was Anchorage—Des Moines? I like Des Moines. See, if it was in Anchorage, I was going to have the (Alaska) Bush people. They were going to be there and, you know, the Kilchers from The Last Frontier. You’re going to have them in the front row.” 

 

On whether he thinks the SEC championship game should be moved to Saturday …

“I told Greg (Sankey) that today. If this is what happens, why are we playing that game? We won the game. A technical got them the game and they get a three seed and we get a four. I’m happy for A&M. I’m disappointed that South Carolina didn’t get in. I can’t believe it. I’m, like, stunned. But, they do what they do and they have numbers that they can convince you that this is all, these are, emotions don’t play a part in it. OK. They don’t for me either.”

 

On the “name brand” teams in the East Region motivating the team …

“I don’t think they’re worried about it. They’re so happy, they don’t care. They’re hungry. They’re like, ‘I don’t care who we play, let’s play.’ ”

 

On how much he has seen of Indiana this season …

“I haven’t watched much of them. I told Tom (Crean) three weeks ago that we would be playing them. I said, ‘West Virginia, you, and my prediction was Kansas.’ He’ll tell you. He just called me. The problem is, you’re affecting more than one; you’re affecting a lot. And, they’ll say it’s all conspiracy, and I hear it all. But it’s fine. “

 

On drama about not playing in regular season and people trying to force that match up …

“I have no idea. You’ll have to ask the people on the committee. I am telling you, they will come up with some great numbers and land in Florida for you. I am just telling you.”

 

On the way the team played today being another step getting the team prepared for the tournament …

“Yeah, and then we are playing Thursday. OK, let’s go! Let’s leave today. Let’s leave right now and we’ll play it all on I-95. I don’t know what to tell you. It’s the greatest thing.”

 

On how the SEC Tournament championship game versus Texas A&M looked…

“It was a great game. Great college game. It obviously helped A&M more than it helped us. “

 

On speaking to someone in the selection committee …

“No. I won’t. Just no. They have probably been listening to what I have said the past two days though.”

 

On scouting Stony Brook …

“I didn’t. I just was watching the game. I just know one kid had 41, a big strong kid. I didn’t watch the game that way. “


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