Kentucky Football: The Good, The Bad, And The Studly

The studly.

The Governor's Cup game is now in the history books, and as widely expected, the Kentucky Wildcats once again proved to have the superior football team versus the Louisville Cardinals, although perhaps by not as much as many of us hoped after the first half.

Now that we've all had time to digest and consider the events of yesterday, a little more analysis is in order.  We here at A Sea of Blue, always the trend-setters, will change up the Good/Bad/Ugly scenario with one that is uniquely our own.

More Good

  • The receiving corps.  This was undoubtedly the best day catching the football that the Kentucky receiving corps has had in three years.  The only dropped pass all day was an over-the-middle play that Randall Cobb, of all people, mishandled.  He more than made up for it with the superhuman one-handed cuffing of a poorly-thrown ball, though.  But Matt Roark had his best day as a Wildcat, and LaRod King and Chris Matthews were also extremely impressive.
  • The offensive line. Hartline was rarely in trouble, and the line did a good job opening holes.  Joker was right about them.
  • Mike Hartline.  17-26 for 217 yards is hardly Heisman-quality numbers, but they are pretty good.  In the second half, Hartline was far less efficient than in the first, but overall he had a good game.
  • The running backs. Locke and Russell were very good today.  Obviously Locke will get mentioned in studly, but as a group, the backs were excellent.
  • The pass defense.  Well, I am giving them the benefit of the doubt.  The truth is, Louisville had no receivers to speak of, so guarding them was not that tough.

More after the jump.

More Bad

  • The rushing defense.  We knew the defense was young, and it looked young.  Perhaps "bad" is a bit too strong, they really weren't bad.  But they did allow Louisville to largely dominate them in the second half, and that is the kiss of death versus an SEC opponent.  Bilal Powell racked up 153 yards rushing, most of it in the second half.
  • Mike Hartline's arm.  I gave Hartline credit for a good game, but his arm is still bad.  He threw a couple of wounded ducks that an SEC defense would have picked off.
  • The offensive kicking team.  Ryan Tydlacka was 50% on field goal attempts and only slightly better on extra points.
  • Special teams as a whole.  Giving up a special teams near-touchdown and missing four points qualifies as bad.

The Studly

  • Randall Cobb.  Likely to be a fixture here.  He had 169 all-purpose yards and a touchdown.
  • Derrick Locke.  Like Cobb, likely to be a fixture.  148 all-purpose yards, 104 yards rushing, two touchdowns.
  • Moncell Allen.  If he continues to pancake foes like he did any number of times versus Louisville, we won't miss John Connor.
  • Joe Mansour.  That kid kills the ball.  Every kickoff got to the end zone.  That's all a kicker can do.

Overall, a great win for Kentucky.  The Birds bite the bullet.  Next, the Western Kentucky Hilltoppers, my alma mater, come to town.

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