VAUGHT: Sparks says Obrzut MVP in Alabama win

Even though Sparks had 26 points, the junior guard correctly noted that Obrzut's two points, four rebounds and 22 minutes had a huge impact on Kentucky's win. In fact, without "Woo," the Cats likely would not have won what could have been their biggest game of the season.

Probably not many people paid attention after the Alabama game when Patrick Sparks said Lukasz Obrzut should have been the most valuable player of UK’s win over Alabama.

After all, Sparks had put on a shooting exhibition that even Adolph Rupp would have admired. He was so unconscious from 3-point range that even Tubby Smith was able to laugh about Sparks telling him to “call my number” in the second half.

But even though Sparks had 26 points, the junior guard correctly noted that Obrzut’s two points, four rebounds and 22 minutes had a huge impact on Kentucky’s win. In fact, without “Woo,” the Cats likely would not have won what could have been their biggest game of the season.

With Randolph Morris in foul trouble and unable to guard Chuck Davis, Obrzut gave Kentucky solid defense and rebounding in their second-half comeback. He didn’t make spectacular plays, but he made all the right plays.

More importantly, it was his second straight solid outing. The game before he had four points and one rebound in five key minutes against Auburn.

In UK’s first 12 SEC games, he played 19 minutes. In the last two, he’s played 27 minutes. Apparently he meant it a few weeks ago when he said he was “no quitter” and that he was getting better in practice.

Smith said before the Alabama game that Obrzut would get ‘his chance” because he was practicing well and could give the Cats a need physical inside presence.

Not only did he get that chance, but he made the most of it. If he can do that again tonight against Tennessee, then Kentucky could have a badly needed inside physical presence to bolster its NCAA Tournament chances.


LARRY VAUGHT is the one of Kentucky's most well-known sportswriters in the state of Kentucky and Sports Editor for the Danville Advocate Messenger. He has been a columnist for 28 years covering Kentucky Wildcats sports.  You can read Larry Vaught articles here on Kentucky Sports Report several times a week as well as Kentucky Sports Report - the magazine.  If you have a question or comment, ask him on the message boards.



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