When the Cards and Cats take the court on Saturday afternoon in one of the most anticipated regular season games of the season, Kentucky will do so with a significant height advantage. This is a pretty well-known fact, however I feel it is still worth noting. I knew Kentucky overall was just tall, but looking at the heights side by side, it is pretty staggering.
F Montrezl Harrell 6’8
F Wayne Blackshear 6’5
C Chinanu Onuaku 6’10
G Terry Rozier 6’1
G Chris Jones 5’10
F Karl Anthony-Towns 6’11
F Trey Lyles 6’10
C Willie Cauley-Stein 7’0
G Aaron Harrison 6’6
G Andrew Harrison 6’6
So adding these heights up in inches, Kentucky’s starters are 405 inches tall. Louisville is 382 inches tall. That is a difference of 23 inches, pretty much two feet.
Going off of minutes played, now let’s just look at the first few guys off of the bench for each team. This will be a little different for Kentucky because of their platoon “system.” For Louisville, Mangok Mathiang (6’10), Anton Gill (6’3), and Anas Mahmoud (7’0) play the most minutes off the bench. Their combined height is 241 inches. For Kentucky, three of their next five are Devin Booker (6’6), Dakari Johnson (7’0), and Marcus Lee (6’9). That adds up to 243 inches, so that is pretty even.
So if you are adding this up at home, and I am sure you aren’t (don’t worry, that’s what I am here for), when you look at 8 of the first 10 players for each team, the Cats have a height advantage of 648 inches to 623 inches, again right around two feet because of the starters for each team.
*What feels like an hour later…
There is probably a much faster way to do this, or maybe it’s already posted somewhere, but I just added up the height in inches for every NBA team’s starting 5 according to the depth charts on ESPN.com. The tallest team in the NBA is a tie between the Chicago Bulls and Philadelphia 76ers. Their total height? 402 inches, 3 less than Kentucky. So yes, Kentucky’s starting five is taller than every NBA team’s starting 5. And no, I am not saying they could beat any NBA team, so don’t think that. Just stating the fact about their height, that is all.
I am not saying all of this to imply that Louisville doesn’t have a chance just simply because Kentucky is tall. In fact, I am tired of getting the question asked to me of “Do you think Louisville has a chance?” But that is its own post if I get around to typing that one up.
I just wanted to point out just how big this Kentucky team is, and back it up with some interesting numbers in relation to Louisville’s team as well as NBA teams. Don’t take it for anymore than that.
So as always, Go Cards! Go Krogering!