WALKER: Kentucky must beat Vanderbilt

Now that Kentucky has lost to Louisville, the Cats have to beat Vanderbilt. If they are going to have any hope of doing well in the Southeastern Conference or salvaging this season and making an impression on the NCAA Tournament selection committee, they have to start winning games. And they have to win home games because it is going to be extremely tough for this team to win anywhere on the road.

Never in my lifetime did I think I would see a time when one could suggest that Vanderbilt might own Kentucky in basketball. But Vandy has won four straight games over Kentucky.

It is amazing how Vanderbilt is doing it. They have always had really good 3-point shooters over the years, but coach Kevin Stallings has done an outstanding job of pulling some outstanding athletes in there the last few years. They have some athletic, quick players that you usually don't associate with Vanderbilt.

They are tough. Last year they were probably more athletic overall than Kentucky. They have our number right now, too. If they win again at Rupp Arena, it's going to be a big blow to this struggling Kentucky team.

Do I think Kentucky could win? Yes, I do, if Kentucky plays like it did the first half against Louisville when it was sharing the ball and everybody was getting involved. It has to be a total team effort. Kentucky can't have just one or two guys having great offensive games and expect to win. It has to be a team effort because from top to bottom, Vanderbilt just has more talent than Kentucky does right now. So to win, Kentucky needs a great effort but more importantly, it needs a great team effort.

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