LEXINGTON, Ky. -- There's just no downplaying the Louisville vs. Kentucky rivalry, no matter how hard players from both schools try.
While insisting that the showdown Saturday is part of the journey toward a national championship, they understand its importance in a basketball-crazed state where everything grinds to a halt for several hours and relationships can be affected by the outcome.
Said Kentucky forward Alex Poythress, "It's the one game everybody in Kentucky looks forward to."
Both schools also look forward to a marquee victory before league play begins next month.
The No. 18 Wildcats (9-3) are looking for their first Top 25 win in four tries. Sixth-ranked and defending champ Louisville (11-1) also wants to beat a ranked foe, a mutual goal that adds more drama to the matchup at Rupp Arena.