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A 68-year-old Kentucky fan and 71-year-old Louisville fan were arguing Monday about who will win Saturday’s game when the discussion quickly got out of hand. Georgetown police Lt. Robert Swanigan says the Kentucky fan flipped off the Louisville fan, prompting the Cardinals fan to punch him in the face. Though police were called, Swanigan said the Kentucky fan declined to file charges.

The fight likely wouldn’t surprise Kentucky coach Calipari, who lovingly compares Wildcats fans to piranhas _ yes, the flesh-eating fish.

“If you’re going to attack Kentucky, just be right,” Calipari said of a fan base that feeds off every little bit of information about his school and dissects every game tape three times. “I’m just telling you: piranha _ wahp-wahp-wahp-wahp-wahp-wahp. They’ll come and eat your yard, your house. These people are nuts.”

And Cardinals’ fans enjoy poking fun at them.

On Twitter and message boards, they joke how Kentucky fans turn Cats into two words _ Ca-yuts. One of Big Blue Nation’s favorite retorts? Loserville.

Pitino jokes many marriages in the state fail because they have a Louisville woman marrying a Kentucky man.

Nick Fenton and his wife, Christi, are working through their differences in Louisville. Fenton said they fly a “House Divided” flag in their front yard with the two schools’ logos displayed.

“Her family is all Cards fans, so they brainwashed her,” said Fenton, who usually reserves the rhetoric for one week a year. “This Final Four game, though, it’s going to be pretty wild.”

It took the governor to first get the two schools together on an annual basis.

Kentucky never scheduled in-state schools under coach Adolph Rupp, and former assistant Joe B. Hall dutifully followed suit when he took over as coach. Gov. John Y. Brown stepped in following their matchup in the 1983 NCAA Mideast Regional finals _ know around the state as The Dream Game. Louisville beat Kentucky in overtime in Knoxville, Tenn., in the teams’ first meeting since 1959.

“It created a lot of animosity and strong feelings toward each other, but at the same time I felt like the taxpayers were entitled to see the competition between two of the nation’s premier programs,” the former governor said. “If you ask either school what the No. 1 game on the schedule both in basketball and football, they’ll say it’s the rival school.

“They have to live in shame, whichever one loses.”

Kentucky vs. Louisville is a matchup of cultural divide that’s steeped in history with nine combined titles between the two schools, the same number as the more publicized North Carolina-Duke rivalry.

Former Kentucky guard and No. 1 NBA pick John Wall remembers the wild scene before the only rivalry game he played in 2010 more than the contest itself.

“I didn’t think it was that big until we played them. There was about to be a big brawl at the beginning of the game. Technicals both ways,” said Wall, star guard for the Washington Wizards. “All you hear from the fans is, `Don’t lose to the Cardinals. Whatever happens, Big Blue Nation better not lose to Louisville.’”

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