John Calipari on Gators: “They’re good.”

John Calipari was not happy with UK’s defense — or lack of defense — at Florida last year. (Vicky Graff Photo)

By KEITH TAYLOR, Kentucky Today

Kentucky (21-5, 11-2 Southeastern Conference) faces a Florida team  tonight that has been on a run. The Gators (17-9, 9-4) have won three in a row and five of their last six games since ending January with a three-game losing streak.

The two teams will play each other twice in the next two weeks and Florida is now tied with Auburn and LSU for second place in the SEC two games behind UK. Beat Kentucky twice and Florida could be SEC champion

“Our schedule down the stretch is ridiculous, but it is what it is — and we’re beat up,” Calipari said.

Next came some of the Calipari sarcasm.

“The biggest thing I’m hearing is there are people out there that feel sorry for us. They’re having parties in other parts of the league right now. It’s just how it is,” the coach pleaded Friday.

Kentucky swept the Gators last season and will play the Gators twice in the next two weeks.

“There was a couple games that they lost that I watched that they had and they kind of let go. They’ve got some size, their guard play. They’ve got some veterans. They’re good,” Calipari said. “I think the league puts us together with certain games at the end of the season that come into play late. Florida and us and the other games we play.

Sophomore guard Immanuel Quickley is expecting a challenge from the Gators again this year.

“I played against them a good amount of times last year,” he said. “They played us tough both times, really well-coached, they’ve got a lot of talented players, players that I played against in high school as well. It’s going to be a good game. They’re really tough (and) really skilled.”

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Gametracker: Florida at Kentucky, 6 p.m., Saturday. TV/Radio: ESPN, UK Radio Network.

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