- Associated Press - Friday, December 10, 2010

LEXINGTON, KY. (AP) - Every so often Kentucky coach John Calipari will stop practice after guard Darius Miller does something spectacular.

Calipari will blow the whistle, play will stop and the coach will turn to Miller’s teammates with a pleading look. In turn the Wildcats will yell to the talented, but inconsisent junior:

“Do that in a game!”

Miller says he’s trying.

The athletic Miller has become an enigma in his two-plus seasons on campus. Calipari believes the former Kentucky “Mr. Basketball” has the ability to take over games.

He’s just not doing it, at least, not yet.

Miller is averaging 9.9 points and 5.3 rebounds for the 17th-ranked Wildcats (6-2), who play rapidly improving Indiana (7-1) on Saturday.

Yet Calipari says there are too many times when Miller can disappear in plain sight. That can’t happen on a team with just 10 players in uniform.

“There’s something that holds him back when it’s a four-point game and he can bust open the game,” Calipari said. “There’s something that makes him evaporate when we’ve got guys out and now you must step up and go do something. You take over. There’s something that’s holding him back.”

What it is Calipari has no idea. The two have met one-on-one recently in hopes of finding a solution. Even Miller isn’t sure what’s wrong.

“I expect he wants me to be more productive on the offensive and being more aggressive offensively and defensively,” he said. “I’m glad he has that much confidence in me, that’s a help that he has that much confidence in me. I guess I have to just step up my production.”

It’s not that Miller isn’t doing anything; he’s just not doing something all the time. He didn’t have a rebound during the first half of a win over Notre Dame on Wednesday, finishing with five in 37 minutes.

Calipari let Miller know that it wasn’t nearly good enough. With center Enes Kanter ruled permanently ineligible by the NCAA for taking improper benefits while playing for a Turkish club team, Kentucky is undersized.

Miller can play bigger than his 6-foot-7 frame. He snared a rebound in traffic off a late free throw miss against North Carolina, starting a break that at least let teammate Doron Lamb get off a desperation last-second heave that fell short.

It was quintessential Miller. He went and made a play, then deferred to a teammate. It was fine a year ago when he was surrounded by a handful of NBA first-round picks. The Wildcats aren’t nearly as deep this season.

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