The next afternoon's practice, as both Evans and Brewer recall it, was especially rugged, which probably had a lot to do with Kentucky's 92-59 blowout of DePaul on Monday. And once the shock wore off in Lexington, Tech's victory was thought to be such a fluke that Wildcat fans began looking forward to the rematch 23 days later in Atlanta.
Kentucky failed to avenge its earlier defeat, however, and Tech won again, 65-59. Those losses turned out to be the only blots on Kentucky's record heading into the NCAA tournament, in which the Wildcats were upset by Marquette in their first game.
From that season on, Hyder seemed to have a way of getting under Rupp's skin, just as Babe McCarthy of Mississippi State and Ray Mears of Tennessee did in Rupp's later years. By 1964, when Kentucky and Tech stopped playing each other because of the Yellow Jackets' defection from the Southeastern Conference, Hyder's record against Rupp was 9-16, much better than the records of most other rivals of the Kentucky coach.
To this day Hyder is quick to point out that he won six of his last 10 games against Rupp. "I don't know exactly why," Hyder says, "but we seemed to have more luck against him than others did, even some of the teams that were better than we were."
When Rupp retired in 1972, he had 875 victories, still the Division I record. Hyder says that he didn't like Rupp at first because of the way the Wildcats clobbered his teams in their first few meetings but that he and Rupp became friends after the shocker of '55. When the ailing Rupp went to Atlanta to address the national coaches' convention in 1977, Hyder took him to all his meals and looked after him. A few months later Rupp died.
"He did more than anybody for basketball in the South," Hyder says. "In fact, I think they made one mistake when they built that 23,000-seat arena in Lexington and named it after him. They should have set up a seat at midcourt, about three or four rows up, and blocked it off. Then they could tell everyone who comes in, ' Coach Rupp sits here.' That way he would always be there when Kentucky plays a game."