In lieu of practicing in a high school gym or traveling on to Morehead, the Murray State men’s basketball team will practice today in historic Rupp Arena in Lexington.
For Racer Danero Thomas, the allure of Rupp wasn’t quite there after making friends with the Wildcats’ Ramon Harris when Thomas played in Africa with Harris on a summer team. Harris took Thomas on a tour, allowing him to get acquainted with tradition.
But for Racers Kevin Thomas and Isacc Miles, the rafters of Rupp are still impressive.
"It will be a good experience, because I’ve never been there," Miles said. "I mean, I’m not a Kentucky fan, but I can respect that."
Miles, a sophomore transfer from Creighton, is finally finding his offensive groove. Thursday night against Eastern Kentucky, Miles had 11 points, two assists, two turnovers, three rebounds and a steal. Due to transfer rules, Miles sat out all of last season.
"When you sit out a year, it’s tough to get back right way," Miles explained. "So the first couple games we’ve been winning, so I haven't been complaining about trying to score. I'm just doing the little things, defensively and getting ready to play conference basketball."
Miles' defensive effort held EKU's leading scorer, Mike Rose, to just two points.
EKU coach Jeff Neubauer was asked to compare this Racer team to the last OVC Championship Racer team, the 2005-2006 team coached by Mick Cronin that fell by three points to North Carolina in the NCAA Tournament.
"It’s yet to be determined," Neubauer said. "This team does compare to that team, and the next three months will tell if their defense is as good as Mick's last team, the 2005 tournament team."