VAUGHT: Obrzut sees LSU game as winnable

LSU might be ranked 24th in the country, have what many basketball analysts consider one of the nation's top starting units and possess a dynamic one-two punch inside in Glen Davis and Tyrus Thomas, but none of that has overwhelmed Kentucky junior center Lukasz Obrzut going into Saturday's game.

"They are strong, but we are, too," Obrzut said Friday. "We can match up at every position. We can win."

But Woo, Vanderbilt coach Kevin Stallings and others have said LSU has the best talent in the Southeastern Conference. "What coaches (said that)? Maybe they are right. We have not played them yet. I am pretty sure we will see tomorrow. They are pretty much the same team they had last year without Brandon Bass. We can go there and win," Obrzut said.

Obrzut normally is not nearly as confident, or expressive. However, he said he's watched enough game film of LSU to understand that the Tigers play a style that might suit Kentucky because the Cats also play their best when they can run.

"This is just how we have to think when we prepare for a game. It's better to go in believing you are going to win, and we all believe that," Obrzut said. "We can't go into the game with any doubts coming to my mind. I just want to win and to do that, you have to believe you can win. We have started understanding that we have no more games left if we lose. Our backs are against the wall. We have to win."

Obrzut said the overwhelming support the basketball team helps make the players believe they can win. The team visited wounded soldiers in a Lexington hospital recently and that made a lasting impression on the sophomore from Poland. "Every soldier, no matter how hurt he was, was a Kentucky fan. That did impress me. They were fighting for the their country and did the right thing. Now they are hurt. Some are hurt for life. It's hard to experience that for yourself and not be touched."

The center said he even understands why Kentucky fans are upset that this team has already lost nine games and is unranked.

"Kentucky is used to winning and playing for championships. Kentucky is all about winning. If you are not winning, people are upset. That's natural at Kentucky," he said. "Everybody knows that if Kentucky does not win a championship, it is a bad season. I understand that and try to do the best I can for the fans for that reason.

"But now it is not a matter of talking about winning. It is a matter of playing and winning and that's what I think we are going to do."

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