BTI's Rants and Ramblings: UK Trying to Buck Trend About Inexperience

Bryan the Internalmost 11 years


Aritcle written by:Bryan the InternBryan the Intern
The least experienced NCAA Champion in history.  Kentucky trying to beat that record this season.  Can it be done? This is nothing new, but Kentucky is attempting to try and win a national title with a formula that has not ever really worked in the NCAA Tournament, and that is significant playing time for inexperienced players.  Whether or not Enes Kanter becomes eligible or not, Kentucky is likely to start 3 freshman and 2 juniors this season, giving the starting lineup 4 years of total experience coming into the year.  5 out of the last 6 NCAA champions have had AT LEAST 11 years of experience out of their championship starting lineup.  Even the Syracuse team that people point to as an example had just 2 freshman starters and 5 years returning experience.  2010-11 Kentucky (assuming Kanter is qualified) Enes Kanter: Freshman Terrence Jones: Freshman Darius Miller: Junior Deandre Liggins: Junior Brandon Knight: Freshman Total: 4 years experience 2009-10 Duke Brian Zoubek: Senior Lance Thomas: Senior Kyle Singler: Junior Jon Scheyer: Senior Nolan Smith: Junior Total: 13 years experience 2008-09 North Carolina Tyler Hansbrough: Senior Deon Thompson: Junior Wayne Ellington: Junior Danny Green: Senior Ty Lawson: Junior Total: 12 years experience 2007-08 Kansas Sasha Kaun: Senior Darrell Arthur: Sophomore Brandon Rush: Junior Mario Chalmers: Junior Russell Robinson: Senior Total: 11 years experience 2006-07 Florida Joakim Noah: Junior Al Horford: Junior Corey Brewer: Junior Lee Humphrey: Senior Taurean Green: Junior Total: 11 years experience 2005-06 Florida Joakim Noah: Sophomore Al Horford: Sophomore Corey Brewer: Sophomore Lee Humphrey: Junior Taurean Green: Sophomore Total: 6 years experience 2004-05 North Carolina Sean May: Junior Jawad Williams: Senior Jackie Manuel: Senior Rashad McCants: Junior Raymond Felton: Junior Total: 12 years experience 2003-04 UCONN Emeka Okafor: Junior Josh Boone: Freshman Rashaad Anderson: Sophomore Ben Gordon: Junior Taliek Brown: Senior Total: 8 years experience 2002-03 Syracuse Craig Forth: Sophomore Hakim Warrick: Sophomore Carmelo Anthony: Freshman Keith Duany: Senior Gerry McNamara: Freshman Total: 5 years experience 2001-02 Maryland: 12 years experience 2000-01 Duke: 8 years experience 1999-00 Michigan State: 13 years experience In the last 11 years of NCAA champions, only 3 freshman have started the title game out of 55 total players.  Kentucky is starting 3 freshman alone this season.  Whether or not this team can win the national title is still up for grabs?  Maybe, maybe not.  But the worry has to be with the recruiting strategy of Coach Cal, will this UK team continue to have little experience year after year, a strategy that has NEVER worked.  Can Cal buck that trend?  For more perspective, Kentucky came into last season with 3 freshman starters and 3 total years of experience.  And we know how that ended up. 

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