The Kentucky Wildcats defeated the Robert Morris Colonials 87-49 in a game that saw them take revenge for an early exit in the NIT at the hands of the Colonials last season. Not only was the game big in terms of facing weak teams going forward, but it was necessary to bring up the confidence of this young team.
One player who will have gained loads of confidence from the game is Aaron Harrison. Harrison scored 28 points and was 10-of-10 from the free throw line. In the recent loss to the Michigan State Spartans, Kentucky struggled from the free throw line and would have won if it wasn’t for poor free throw shooting. If Harrison can continue to shoot well from the line, he could find himself with the ball in late-game situations.
Robert Morris focused on shutting down arguably Kentucky’s best player, Julius Randle. There were a few points in the game where Randle had four opposing players guarding him. With Randle being guarded so closely, someone else had to step up, and Harrison did just that. Harrison showed flashes of being entirely capable of putting the Wildcats on his back when other players are shut down.
Harrison’s performance just goes to show that even if a team can take one or two players out of the game for Kentucky, the Wildcats have players that are more than capable of taking their place. Kentucky’s future opponents need to remember that every player on John Calipari’s team is capable of having a 30-plus point night and be prepared to shut down not just one player, but the whole team.