Feeling blue: A look back at the Utes’ miserable recent history against Kentucky

The Utes are 0-5 in the NCAA tournament against Kentucky, with all the losses coming since 1993. Here is a look at the postseason setbacks to the Utes’ March rival.

March 21, 1993

NCAA Southeast

2nd round

Nashville, Tenn.

Kentucky 83 Utah 62

After jumping out to a 2-0 lead, the Utes went cold, allowing the Cats to open up a 17-point lead halfway through the first period. The Utes were leading the nation in free-throw percentage, but managed only one attempt in the first half. They could not draw any closer in the second, allowing Kentucky to cruise to the easy victory. Josh Grant led the Utes with 24 points, and Jamal Mashburn had 19 for the Wildcats.

Kentucky blew everyone away until the Final Four, when they lost in overtime to Michigan’s fab five squad in the national semifinal game.

March 21, 1996

NCAA Midwest

Regional Sweet 16

Minneapolis, Minn.

Kentucky 101 Utah 70

A talented Ute squad that featured Keith Van Horn, Mike Doleac and Andre Miller could do little to slow down a star-studded Kentucky squad that played nine future NBA players.

The Cats jumped on the Utes right away, leading 56-34 at the break.

Van Horn led the Utes with 23 points and eight rebounds, but it was not enough to overcome big performances from Derek Anderson and Antoine Walker, who pitched in 18 and 19 points, respectively for the eventual national champions.

March 22, 1997


Regional Elite 8

San Jose, Calif.

Kentucky 72 Utah 59

The Utes made a better showing this time around, but still came up short to Ron Mercer and the Cats. Van Horn scored 15 points, but could not pull out the win in his final collegiate game. Mercer had 21 points on 10 of 17 shooting. Kentucky went on to the NCAA championship game, where they lost to Mike Bibby’s Arizona squad.

March 30, 1998

NCAA championship game

San Antonio, Texas

Kentucky 78 Utah 69

Out of the five losses to UK, this was probably the most heartbreaking for U fans. The Utes were up 10 at halftime, before eventually fading in the second half in front of 40,509 at the Alamodome. Andre Miller had one of his normally stellar games, with 16 points, 6 rebounds and five assists before fouling out late. Future Jazzman Scott Padgett pitched in 17 for Kentucky, as they ended the Utes season for the third consecutive year.

March 23, 2003

NCAA Midwest

Regional 2nd round

Nashville, Tenn.

Kentucky 74 Utah 54

In a game featuring many of the same players from the 2005 matchup, the Utes were seemingly intimidated from the get-go, and could never mount much of a charge against Keith Bogans and the Cats. Marc Jackson was the only consistent scorer for the Utes, finishing with 19 points on five of seven shooting. Bogans finished with 18 points and three steals, leading Kentucky to an eventual Elite Eight loss to Marquette.

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