"It is tough right now. We have got seven games left to turn this around," Crawford said.
Crawford wasn't in to making excuses after the game. When told that coaches Bruce Pearl of Tennessee and Tubby Smith of Kentucky both thought the Cats looked fatigued at the end, Crawford almost snapped. "Everyone is tired. You should be at the end of the game if you are playing hard. I'm pretty sure Tennessee was tired, too. But you have to stick it out. You have to be tougher. It's not a time to be frustrated, but how can you not be? We are better than this, or should be," Crawford said.
So what is the problem? Why is Kentucky only 5-4 in SEC play? Why have the Cats already lost three home league games?
"We have to learn to finish games. We play well in spurts, but not for long periods. That should not be happening," Crawford said. "When we have a chance to finish a game and win, we don't do it. When we have to make a big shot, we miss. When we have to get a big stop, we don't. It's frustrating."
Crawford insists he won't let his teammates go in the tank now that the Cats are on the verge of being eliminated from NCAA Tournament consideration.
"I know I am not going to quit and I don't want to play with anybody who does. I don't think that will be a problem. If we win all seven games we have left, things will turn around. That's all I am going to focus on," Crawford said.
Tennessee guard Chris Lofton thinks the Cats might be pressing. He noticed that during his 31-point performance.
"I think they felt they had to win. This is their home court, and you are supposed to protect your home court. They were pressing," Lofton said. "We never gave up. Our coaches put confidence into us. They make us believe we can win anywhere, and we bought into it."
Too bad Tubby Smith can't buy some of that magic potion from the Vols and see if that would help his team buy into what he is saying because as Crawford noted, there's no reason for this team to be playing as miserably at crunch time as what it has.