Posted October 24, 2012 on AP on Fox
There were many moments during Wednesday night's Blue-White scrimmage where Kentucky's freshmen justified the lofty expectations placed upon them. Archie Goodwin showed some flash while scoring a game-high 32 points. Willie Cauley-Stein was a formidable post presence with 14 points and 12 rebounds. Swingman Alex Poythress added 25 points with quickness and athleticism. A sore back slowed highly touted forward Nerlens Noel, but the point was seeing how this foursome played together and with others in their first competitive appearance before the Wildcats faithful. Early returns were encouraging, as they contributed to both teams in a game won by the Blue 89-88. However, the bottom line is meeting John Calipari's high standards and the Wildcats coach quickly noted that this is a work in progress. ''We have a way to go,'' Calipari said afterward. ''We don't rebound, we don't scramble. Other than that, we're a pretty good team.'' Calipari was kidding, noting replacing six players from last season's national championship team would lead to some falloff. Kentucky had scrimmaged just 12 minutes before Wednesday because he has spent much of fall practice teaching his young squad fundamentals. That showed with a lack of defense. ''It's going to take a lot more talking on defense and just executing on the defensive schemes more than we have been,'' Goodwin said. ''We're still learning, so we'll continue to practice on it. We'll get better and better every day we practice it as long as we work hard.'' At the same time, some nice combinations emerged thanks to newcomers such as transfer Julius Mays, a graduate student who played last season for Wright State. He displayed good speed and ball movement along with a nice outside shot for the Blue squad. The highlight of his 13-point game was a fadeaway 3-pointer as the shot clock expired, which looked more planned than hurried. ''It's just trying to find my game,'' Mays said. ''I just want to do whatever it is this team needs me to do, whether that's scoring or coming in and creating for others or distributing the ball, or even if it's coming in and getting greedy on the defensive end. I'm willing to do whatever it takes to win.'' He seemed to find chemistry with Cauley-Stein, who fed him for one shot before Mays returned the favor by lobbing a pass to the 7-footer for a dunk to help the Blue team lead 29-17. ''Me and Julius are (among) seven players that figure to get a lot of playing time, so we had to go at it like that,'' Cauley-Stein said. Noel finished with nine points on 4-of-7 shooting. Among the veterans, Kyle Wiltjer had 28 points, Jon Hood 17 and Jarrod Polson 13. Sophomore Ryan Harrow had 20.
THE BACKYARD
BEST OF MAXIM
RELATED ARTICLES

Calipari: Wildcats 'Not very good'

HOOVER, Ala. --There is no mystery with John Calipari. If you want to know what the man thinks, just ask him. "The biggest challenge is we're not a very good team right now," the Kentucky coach said the moment he arrived at SEC Basketball Media Day. "We don't defend very well as a team or as individual players. We don't rebound like we should with the...

UK's Calipari: 'We're not very good right now'

Kentucky coach John Calipari insists this building job lacks the usual foundation. The defending national champion Wildcats lost six NBA draft picks and every starter, then reloaded with another top-rated recruiting class. Calipari said at SEC media day Thursday anyone who picks his team preseason No. 1 ''needs to be drug-tested. We're not very good right now.'...

Calipari: Scrimmage shows Cats need work

Freshman guard Archie Goodwin scored a game-high 32 points to highlight Kentucky's Blue-White Scrimmage on Wednesday at Rupp Arena, but it was a night that UK coach John Calipari said proves the Cats are a long way from where they need to be.

Plenty of work ahead for Cal, Kentucky

The college basketball season is a long one each and every year, even for the mighty Kentucky Wildcats. Coming off their first national title with John Calipari at the helm, the inexperienced group has an uphill battle ahead of itself in order to defend their crown.

Photo Gallery: Blue-White Scrimmage

This KentuckyScout photo gallery features several images from the Wildcats' annual Blue-White Scrimmage on Wednesday at Rupp Arena, including Willie Cauley-Stein going over Nerlens Noel and Alex Poythress on this tough hook shot.

Towles returns to practice

Kentucky freshman quarterback Patrick Towles returned to the practice field on Tuesday and, after a 17-day layoff from a high ankle sprain, needed to shake off some rust.

Tiger Opponent Preview: Kentucky Wildcats

The Missouri Tigers welcome the Kentucky Wildcats to the Zou for a Saturday morning SEC tilt as both teams are desperately looking for a win to jump start their seasons to a strong finish.

Calipari says Wildcats are still learning

HOOVER, Ala. (AP) -- Kentucky coach John Calipari sounds like an exasperated professor who just started teaching Chinese to a bunch of freshmen. Smart and talented they might be, but it's still a whole new language. That's why the Wildcats coach scoffs at anybody who would anoint the defending national champions the team to beat. "Whoever did that needs to be drug...

UK freshmen get off to positive start

There were many moments during Wednesday night's Blue-White scrimmage where Kentucky's freshmen justified the lofty expectations placed upon them. Archie Goodwin showed some flash while scoring a game-high 32 points. Willie Cauley-Stein was a formidable post presence with 14 points and 12 rebounds. Swingman Alex Poythress added 25 points with quickness and athleticism....

Challengers lining up for Kentucky in SEC

Lose six players to the NBA Draft and the devastation would be insurmountale for most teams, but not John Calipari’s Kentucky Wildcats.  Yes, the Wildcats are the only member of the 72 so-called BCS-affiliated basketball teams that do not have a returning starter, but another superior recruiting crop, headed by Nerlens Noel, who most recruiting pundits rated as the No. 1 player...

QUICK HITS: SEC basketball media day

Alabama head coach Anthony Grant discussed how freshman forward Devonta Pollard is adjusting to the program, while Kentucky's John Calipari fielded questions regarding their all-access show on ESPN at SEC basketball media day Thursday.

Blossoming Berna

Arkansas women's coach Tom Collen thinks sophomore point guard Calli Berna is ready to lead his team, Texas A&M head coach Gary Blair is looking forward to his return to Fayetteville and Kentucky coach John Calipari thinks Arkansas native Archie Goodwin needs to slow down.
College Basketball News
Delivered to your inbox
You'll also receive Yardbarker's daily Top 10, featuring the best sports stories from around the web. Customize your newsletter to get articles on your favorite sports and teams. And the best part? It's free!

Today's Best Stuff
For Bloggers

Join the Yardbarker Network for more promotion, traffic, and money.

Company Info
Help
What is Yardbarker?

Yardbarker is the largest network of sports blogs and pro athlete blogs on the web. This site is the hub of the Yardbarker Network, where our editors and algorithms curate the best sports content from our network and beyond.