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Dance Card: Kentucky, SEC

Who? The Wildcats of Kentucky.

What? The nickname was given in a chapel service. (Proof that football is serious business even at basketball schools.) The University of Kentucky does not recommend raising your own Scratch.

Where? Lexington, Kentucky, which is fiercely protective of its horse farms.

When? March 17th, in Ames, Iowa.

How? They were an at-large selection.

Partner: McNeese State, of the Southland Conference.

Surprise? The SEC regular-season champion does usually get to go dancing.

RPI: 9

SOS: 24

Record: 25-6 (13-3 SEC)

Good wins: Louisville, Duke.

Bad losses: at Alabama

Who's running this show? Matthew Mitchell, since 2007, described as a "whirlwind salesman".

Extra, Extra! The Lexington Herald-Leader.


For the Wildcats, it starts with star junior A'dia Mathies, the team's leading scorer at 15.7 points per game; she also pulls down 5.3 rebounds (just over half offensive) and snags 2.7 steals. Freshman Bria Goss adds 11.2 points. Sophomore Samarie Walker, the UConn transfer, grabs 6.5 boards a game; when she was first eligible after transferring, it looked like Kentucky wasn't sure how to integrate her, and I don't know whether they've solved that yet.

It's a good thing for the Wildcats that they force a lot of turnovers- 28.2 per game- because they average 17.3. Only senior guard Amber Smith has a positive A/TO. Kentucky can be rough to play against, but Kentucky can also be streaky.