1996–97 Kentucky Wildcats men's basketball team

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1996–97 Kentucky Wildcats men's basketball
Kentucky Wildcats logo (1984-2005).png
Conference Southeast Conference
Ranking
Coaches No. 2
AP No. 5
1996–97 record 35–5 (13–3 SEC)
Head coach Rick Pitino
Assistant coach Jim O'Brien
Assistant coach Winston Bennett
Assistant coach Delray Brooks
Home arena Rupp Arena
Seasons
1996–97 Southeastern Conference men's basketball standings
Conf     Overall
Team W   L   PCT     W   L   PCT
East
No. 6 South Carolina 15 1   .938     24 8   .750
No. 5 Kentucky 13 3   .813     35 5   .875
No. 17 Georgia 10 6   .625     24 9   .727
Vanderbilt 9 7   .563     19 12   .613
Florida 5 11   .313     13 17   .433
Tennessee 4 12   .250     11 16   .407
West
Ole Miss 11 5   .688     20 9   .690
Arkansas 8 8   .500     18 14   .563
Auburn 6 10   .375     16 15   .516
Alabama 6 10   .375     17 14   .548
Mississippi State 6 10   .375     12 18   .400
LSU 3 13   .188     10 20   .333
† SEC Tournament winner
Rankings from AP Poll

The 1996–97 Kentucky Wildcats men's basketball team represented University of Kentucky in the 1996–97 NCAA Division I men's basketball season. They were coached by Rick Pitino in his eighth season at Kentucky as members of the East division of the Southeast Conference. They played their home games at Rupp Arena in Lexington, Kentucky. They finished the season 35–5, 13–3 in SEC play to finish in second place in the East division. They defeated Auburn, Mississippi, and Georgia to win the SEC Tournament. As a result, they received the conference's automatic bid to the NCAA Tournament as the No. 1 seed in the West region. They defeated Montana, Iowa, Saint Joseph's and Utah to return to the Final Four for the second consecutive year. In the Final Four, they defeated Minnesota to advance to the National Championship game against Arizona. Looking to repeat as NCAA champions, the Wildcats lost in overtime to Arizona 84–79.

Following the season, head coach Rick Pitino left the school to take the head coaching job for the Boston Celtics.

Previous season[edit]

The Wildcats finished the 1995–96 season 34–2, 16–0 in SEC play to win the SEC regular season championship. They defeated Florida and Arkansas in the SEC Tournament before losing to Mississippi State in the championship game. They received an at-large bid to the NCAA Tournament as the No. 1 seed in the Midwest region. There they defeated San Jose State, Virginia Tech, Utah, and Wake Forest to earn a trip to the Final Four. In the Final Four, they defeated UMass in the National semifinal game and Syracuse in the championship game to win the tournament championship.

Roster[edit]

1996–97 Kentucky Wildcats men's basketball team
Players Coaches
Pos. # Name Height Weight Year Hometown
G/F 3 Edwards, AllenAllen Edwards 6 ft 5 in (1.96 m)
Jr Miami, FL
G 4 Masiello, SteveSteve Masiello 6 ft 2 in (1.88 m)
Fr White Plains, NY
G 5 Turner, WayneWayne Turner 6 ft 2 in (1.88 m)
So Boston, MA
C 13 Mohammed, NazrNazr Mohammed 6 ft 10 in (2.08 m)
So Chicago, IL
G 21 Mills, CameronCameron Mills 6 ft 3 in (1.91 m)
Jr Lexington, KY
G/F 23 Anderson, DerekDerek Anderson 6 ft 5 in (1.96 m)
Sr Louisville, KY
G 25 Epps, AnthonyAnthony Epps 6 ft 2 in (1.88 m)
Sr Lebanon, KY
F 32 Prickett, JaredJared Prickett 6 ft 9 in (2.06 m)
Sr Fairmont, WV
G/F 33 Mercer, RonRon Mercer 6 ft 7 in (2.01 m)
So Nashville, TN
F 34 Padgett, ScottScott Padgett 6 ft 9 in (2.06 m)
So Louisville, KY
C 42 Magloire, JamaalJamaal Magloire 6 ft 10 in (2.08 m)
Fr Toronto
Head coach
Assistant coach(es)

Legend
  • (C) Team captain
  • (S) Suspended
  • (I) Ineligible
  • (W) Walk-on

Schedule[edit]

Date
time, TV
Rank# Opponent# Result Record Site (attendance)
city, state
Exhibition
11/4/1996*
Athletes in Action W 79–62 
Rupp Arena 
Lexington, KY
11/20/1996*
Australia W 84–51 
Rupp Arena 
Lexington, KY
Regular season
11/15/1996*
No. 3 vs. No. 20 Clemson
BCA Classic
L 71–79 (OT) 0–1
RCA Dome (32,250)
Indianapolis, IN
11/28/1996*
No. 8 vs. No. 12 Syracuse
Great Alaska Shootout
W 87–53  1–1
Sullivan Arena (8,285)
Anchorage, AK
11/29/1996*
No. 8 vs. Alaska Anchorage
Great Alaska Shootout
W 104–72  2–1
Sullivan Arena (8,285)
Anchorage, AK
11/30/1996*
No. 8 vs. College of Charleston
Great Alaska Shootout
W 92–65  3–1
Sullivan Arena (8,285)
Anchorage, AK
12/3/1996*
No. 8 vs. Purdue
Great Eight
W 101–87  4–1
United Center (20,171)
Chicago, IL
12/7/1996*
No. 6 vs. No. 8 Indiana W 99–65  5–1
Freedom Hall (20,074)
Louisville, KY
12/9/1996*
No. 6 Wright State W 90–62  6–1
Rupp Arena (23,127)
Lexington, KY
12/14/1996*
No. 3 Notre Dame W 80–56  7–1
Rupp Arena (24,152)
Lexington, KY
12/21/1996*
No. 3 vs. Georgia Tech
Delta Air Lines Classic
W 88–59  8–1
Georgia Dome (27,842)
Atlanta, GA
12/23/1996*
No. 3 UNC Asheville W 105–51  9–1
Rupp Arena (23,891)
Lexington, KY
12/28/1996*
No. 3 vs. Ohio State
Rock and Roll Shootout
W 81–65  10–1
Gund Arena (20,562)
Cleveland, OH
12/31/1996*
No. 3 at No. 16 Louisville W 74–54  11–1
Freedom Hall (20,075)
Louisville, KY
01/04/1997
No. 3 Tennessee W 74–40  12–1
(1–0)
Rupp Arena (24,091)
Lexington, KY
01/07/1997
No. 3 Mississippi State W 90–61  13–1
(2–0)
Rupp Arena (24,038)
Lexington, KY
01/09/1997*
No. 3 Canisius W 68–45  14–1
Rupp Arena (22,883)
Lexington, KY
01/11/1997
No. 3 Mississippi L 69–73  14–2
(2–1)
Tad Smith Coliseum (8,195)
Oxford, MS
01/14/1997
No. 3 at No. 24 Georgia W 86–65  15–2
(3–1)
Stegeman Coliseum (10,523)
Athens, GA
01/18/1997
No. 5 Auburn W 77–53  16–2
(4–1)
Rupp Arena (24,169)
Lexington, KY
01/22/1997
No. 3 vs. Vanderbilt W 58–46  17–2
(5–1)
Riverfront Coliseum (17.121)
Cincinnati, OH
01/26/1997
No. 3 at Arkansas W 83–73  18–2
(6–1)
Bud Walton Arena (20,320)
Fayetteville, AR
01/29/1997
No. 3 at Florida W 92–65  19–2
(7–1)
Stephen C. O'Connell Center (11,629)
Gainesville, FL
02/01/1997
No. 3 Georgia W 82–57  20–2
(8–1)
Rupp Arena (24,197)
Lexington, KY
02/04/1997
No. 3 at No. 25 South Carolina L 79–84 OT 20–3
(8–2)
Frank McGuire Arena (12,575)
Columbia, SC
02/06/1997*
No. 3 Western Carolina W 82–55  21–3
Rupp Arena (22,134)
Lexington, KY
02/09/1997*
No. 3 No. 18 Villanova W 93–56  22–3
Rupp Arena (24,277)
Lexington, KY
02/12/1997
No. 4 Louisiana State W 84–48  23–3
(9–2)
Rupp Arena (23,981)
Lexington, KY
02/15/1997
No. 4 Florida W 85–56  24–3
(10–2)
Rupp Arena (24,191)
Lexington, KY
02/19/1997
No. 3 Alabama W 75–61  25–3
(11–2)
Coleman Coliseum (13,736)
Tuscaloosa, AL
02/22/1997
No. 3 at Vanderbilt W 82–79  26–3
(12–2)
Memorial Gymnasium (15,311)
Nashville, TN
02/25/1997
No. 3 at Tennessee W 74–64  27–3
(13–2)
Thompson-Boling Arena (20,241)
Knoxville, TN
03/02/1997
No. 3 No. 6 South Carolina L 66–72  27–4
(13–3)
Rupp Arena (24,326)
Lexington, KY
SEC Tournament
03/07/1997
No. 6 vs. Auburn
Quarterfinals
W 92–50  28–4
The Pyramid (20,000)
Memphis, TN
03/08/1997
No. 6 vs. Mississippi
Semifinals
W 88–70  29–4
The Pyramid (20,000)
Memphis, TN
03/09/1997
No. 6 vs. No. 24 Georgia
Championship
W 95–68  30–4
The Pyramid (19,423)
Memphis, TN
NCAA Tournament
03/13/1997*
(1W) No. 5 vs. (16W) Montana
First Round
W 92–54  31–4
Huntsman Center (13,832)
Salt Lake City, UT
03/15/1997*
(1W) No. 5 vs. (8W) Iowa
Second Round
W 75–69  32–4
Huntsman Center (14,387)
Salt Lake City, UT
03/20/1997*
(1W) No. 5 vs. (4W) No. 12 Saint Joseph's
Sweet Sixteen
W 83–68  33–4
San Jose Arena (18,543)
San Jose, CA
03/22/1997*
(1W) No. 5 vs. (2W) No. 2 Utah
Elite Eight
W 72–59  34–4
San Jose Arena (18,543)
San Jose, CA
03/29/1997*
(1W) No. 5 vs. (1MW) No. 3 Minnesota
Final Four
W 78–69  35–4
RCA Dome (47,028)
Indianapolis, IN
03/31/1997*
(1W) No. 5 vs. (4SE) No. 15 Arizona
National Championship
L 79–84 OT 35–5
RCA Dome (47,028)
Indianapolis, IN
*Non-conference game. #Rankings from AP Poll. (#) Tournament seedings in parentheses.

[1]

Awards and honors[edit]

Team players drafted into the NBA[edit]

Year Round Pick Player NBA Club
1997 1 6 Ron Mercer Boston Celtics
1997 1 13 Derek Anderson Cleveland Cavaliers
1998 1 29 Nazr Mohammed Utah Jazz
1999 1 28 Scott Padgett Utah Jazz
2000 1 19 Jamaal Magloire Charlotte Hornets

[2]

References[edit]

  1. ^ http://www.bigbluehistory.net
  2. ^ "1997 NBA Draft on". Databasebasketball.com. Archived from the original on 2012-04-27. Retrieved 2012-04-20.