By LARRY VAUGHT
John Calipari knew Kentucky should be a dominant offensive rebounding team, especially when Jarred Vanderbilt finally got to start playing.
However, to get the rebounding team he now has, Calipari had to make certain changes in his team.
“You can’t stretch out all over the court because they can’t get to the rim. So you have to have more of an offense that’s designed to every shot that goes up there’s going to be two or three guys on the backboard, and that’s basically what we did,” Calipari said.
“We got away from some of the stuff we were doing and we put in some new stuff. (We) explained to the guys why we were doing it. They want to win.”
Sounds simple. Calipari said it wasn’t.
“The thing that they did not understand and hear is, if you don’t do this together you’re not going to have any fun. If you’re not going to do it together you cannot win against teams that are going to play like teams,” Calipari said.
“Then when you’re losing it’s no fun. And then when you’re not enjoying playing with each other you’re really miserable.”
Wait. There’s one more contributing factor to UK’s recent surge.
“The biggest thing, too, on the flipside is this team now is beginning to enjoy defense. And if you enjoy defense and you’re playing together, you basically can’t wait for the next game to come up,” Calipari said. “I’m happy with their progress and what they’re doing.”