Kentucky-Tennessee football (Volunteers 29-1 in the last 30) long ago stopped being a rivalry.
The UK-UT men's basketball programs (Wildcats 10-2 in last 12) aren't really rivals, either.
Nope, for those who crave a white-hot border rivalry between the state universities of Kentucky and Tennessee, women's basketball is the emerging place to be.
For the third time in the past two seasons, Tennessee's regal Lady Vols and Kentucky's gritty Wildcats conducted a hoops slugfest Thursday night.
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A game of back-and-forth runs, momentum swings, floor burns and all-out effort came down to the final possession.
Down 73-72, UK got the ball back with 46 seconds left after Jelleah Sidney blocked Cierra Burdick's shot.
Before a roaring Memorial Coliseum crowd of 7,407, the Wildcats were one field goal from their fourth victory over Tennessee in the past six games.
What the Cats found instead was stomach-churning frustration.
In a frantic ending, Kentucky got four shots at the goal — a Jennifer O'Neill three-pointer (16 seconds); a Makayla Epps shot in the lane (four seconds); an Alexis Jennings shot from the left block (two seconds); and an O'Neill desperation jumper just ahead of the final buzzer.
None went in.
So No. 6 Tennessee (18-3, 8-0 SEC) escaped No. 10 Kentucky (16-5, 5-3) with a 73-72 victory. It was UT's first win over a Top 10 foe in a true road game since winning at Duke way back in 2008.
For UK, the defeat was achingly similar to the Wildcats' 71-70 loss to the Lady Vols in the finals of the 2014 SEC Tournament. Like that game last March, Thursday's contest saw Kentucky lead throughout most of the game, only to see it slip away late.
"A tough game to lose," a dejected Kentucky Coach Matthew Mitchell said. "Tennessee made more plays than we did. We didn't play any defense in the second half, so we got beat."
It's a testament to how far the Kentucky program has advanced under Mitchell that the UK coach saw no silver lining in playing Tennessee tough. At UK, there was a time when moral victories were the currency of the realm.
Those days are long gone.
"When you have a chance to win in your building and don't find a way to win," Mitchell said, "there's no way to feel good about that."
Historically, of course, Tennessee has dominated Kentucky as it has the rest of the Southeastern Conference. The Lady Vols lead the all-time series with the Cats 51-10.
But over the past six games, UK and UT are 3-3.
Kentucky has put some big marks on the board. In 2012, A'dia Mathies' last-second jumper gave UK a 61-60 win over UT and snapped a 36-game Lady Vols' SEC win streak.
Last season, Jennifer O'Neill led the Cats to their first victory ever in Thompson-Boling Arena, and their first win in Knoxville since 1985.
"They've been close," Tennessee Coach Holly Warlick said of recent UK-UT contests. "They beat us at our place. We hadn't won up here in a while. And I think we've got similar type teams."
If you are going to have a rivalry, you need some controversy.
That SEC Tournament championship game last March was as intense and chippy a contest as I covered all last season. There were four technical fouls called. After it was over, both teams traded barbs in the post-game news conferences.
Thursday night's contest ended with the Coliseum fans booing the officials off the court, in the apparent belief the home team came up on the short end of the whistle down the stretch.
Of Kentucky's four potential game-winning shots, it appeared that freshman Jennings might have gotten fouled on hers. There was no call.
"I can't really say what happened," Jennings said. "I tried to go up as hard as I could and I just wasn't able to finish."
UK's coming up short foiled a stellar late-game performance from Epps. The sophomore guard from Marion County scored UK's final 10 points and 14 of its last 18. Down the stretch, Epps and Tennessee star Isabelle Harrison (19 points, 10 rebounds) each put their team on their back.
"Epps was phenomenal," Warlick said. "She was outstanding. We didn't have an answer for her. But we had people step up as well."
That, after all, is what makes a rivalry.