DeMarcus Cousins is becoming a dominating player for the Kentucky Wildcats, perhaps the most dominating freshman big man to ever don the Kentucky uniform in the last half century.
In order to reach his potential he needs to be able to keep his head, and his body in the game.
Kentucky point guard John Wall commented on his big man's play.
"That was big for us. Coach told us last game he was killing for us, he had 27 points last game. This game we knew we were going to go to him and try to get him involved. Their big men were trying to do a good job up front in the post, but he was just getting angles and making tough shots. Like you said, he got a couple and ones back to back," said Wall.
What would it be like if Cousins were able to play more minutes?
Wall said, "Probably like 30 and 20. He is averaging like 16 and 12, so imagine him playing a lot more minutes, it would be pretty tough."
Making mistakes like the technical foul he picked up for making an improper comment to to an official is the type of thing that can keep Cousins off the floor.
His coach, John Calipari was not at all pleased with what he viewed as an unnecessary technical foul. The Kentucky coach also credited Cousins with showing some restraint.
Calipari said, "With what he said he deserved the technical. He said he did not touch the ball which I believed but they called it, so I said go to the monitor and check it, but it's not a play that you can go to the monitor. I thought I might fool them, but they knew that you could not go to the monitor and check the monitor on that kind of play, but he walked off and said what he said and he deserved to get a technical. Do you know how far he has come?' He got punched in the head today and the official came over and said I should have called it. He did not respond to it. DeMarcus is growing up. He is going to do dumb things at times but out here with all of those young guys, it's all freshmen stuff."
Junior forward Patrick Patterson indicated that Cousins was an important factor in the team getting off to a good start against Vanderbilt.
Patterson, "We wanted to go to him right away. We knew we had an advantage with him down low. (A.J.) Ogilvy is a big guy, No. 3 (Festus Ezeli) is a big guy, but DeMarcus also is a big guy who can move his feet on offense and he has a tremendous range of offensive skill. We wanted to use that to our advantage and we wanted to use a big man early in the game, get him established and get him going and that is exactly what we did."
Vanderbilt Kevin Stallings was very complimentary of Cousins after the game.
"He is really a terrific player. With all of his size, he is so wide. He really had his way with us until he got into foul trouble. He was a big factor in the game."
Stallings commented on Cousins being just as big a factor for the Wildcats as heralded point guard John Wall.
"A lot has been made about John Wall, because he is a terrific player, and deservedly so. But, Cousins, even though at a different position, is just as much a factor right now for their team. He is really quickly becoming a dominant inside player, maybe the best dominant inside player in our league. We were trying to double team him and we told our players what he would do when he was double teamed, and he did it. I certainly had some disappointment in our lack of attention to the things we needed to do to win the game. That was one of them."
Vanderbilt' Aussie import, A.J. Ogilvy spoke spoke of the strength of Cousins, which resulted in Ogilvy struggling to guard the Kentucky big man.
"He is a big strong guy with a lot of athletic ability and I just didn't play tough enough. He is the biggest, toughest, strongest guy I have played so far this season," said the Vandy big man.
Cousins is becoming a beast in the paint
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