I hope everyone enjoys their Labor Day holiday. This version of quickies would be more accurately titled a postmortem from the game yesterday from sources other than A Sea of Blue.
Tweet of the morning:
The UK loss to Louisville yesterday--and the way it occurred--will surely lose some UK fans. I hate that.— KentuckySportsReport (@MyKSR1) September 3, 2012
That is so. This is a world in which you must win to pack the place. Most of us old-timers bemoan this fact, but it is a fact, and has been for some time.
Your quickies follow the jump.
It really doesn't matter. It is here to stay.
The seniors will be happy to know that every UK fan I know of wanted that, too.
Reportedly, freshman running back Dyshawn Mobley tweeted after the game he was upset he didn’t get more touches. Got no problem with that. You can argue the rookie should not have made his views public, but I want someone who wants the football.
I was displeased that Phillips didn't get the freshmen more time. If it wasn't obvious at the beginning of the third quarter that UK was not in a position to come back and win, you have to wonder why not.
Good question. Here's Drew's answer:
I say yes. I think Kentucky is better than what we saw in yesterday’s loss. I say that because the offense moved the ball well throughout the entire game, but couldn’t capitalize on those four "red zone" opportunities. If Craig ‘Auto’ McIntosh’s field goal is five more inches left and Raymond Sanders and CoShik Williams hold on to the football, Kentucky has 17 more points on the scoreboard. I’m not saying that puts them in position to win the game, but 31 points on the road in the season opener is a solid showing for the offense and Kentucky fans walk out of The John with a little more optimism going forward.
I think Drew is right, although both he and I would have a tough time defending that statement based on yesterday's performance. The problem is, we don't yet even know if Louisville's offense or defense is that good or that bad respectively.
Until we find out, I have to reserve judgment, but it's hard to be too optimistic.
There definitely some bright spots to consider. The special teams actually played well. Co’Shik Williams and DeMarcus Sweat each had kick off returns for at least 30 yards. Freshman punter Landon Foster, playing in his first game, pinned Louisville deep twice.
This is right, as we mentioned in the postmortem. The special teams were touted by Phillips, and they absolutely delivered in almost every circumstance, other than the missed field goal. I blame the coaching staff for a bad call on the fake punt -- it was so obvious that a child could have coached the defense against it.
By the way, that missed field goal was a very big deal. It was a difference between a wasted trick play, the onside kick, and a successful one. Kentucky was visibly deflated after that
"Personally, I feel like we let the offense down," defensive end Collins Ukwu said. "I feel like they're a lot better offense from last year. We just got to do better at we do and just play more physical, look at the film and be better at our assignments."
To quote Mr. Miyagi from The Karate Kid: "Hmm. Feeling correct."
I'm sorry, and I don't want to beat up CoShik, but this is just the wrong thing to say. At least lie to us, for the love of God, and let us believe it bothers you. Because trust me, it bothers us.
"I will say this: We still have a lot to learn and to improve upon," Louisville coach Charlie Strong said. "But, just seeing a Big East team beat an SEC team speaks volumes."
Charlie, with all due respect, this is risible. You beat the weakest SEC team in the league, at least right now. Congratulations on the win, but let's not act like a victory over UK is in any way comparable to a victory over even the middle of the SEC. Beat somebody like Auburn or even Mississippi St., and then you can brag a little.
WHAT KENTUCKY LOST: Kentucky's defense took a huge step backward on Sunday. The Wildcats were not expected to be the toast of the SEC by anyone's account, but they made things way too easy for Louisville. There were times when they brought pressure on Bridgewater and forced him out of the pocket, but if they did not he simply picked apart the secondary/pass coverage with ease. Other than the turnovers, Kentucky's offense looked pretty good - particularly when they picked up the pace.
A pretty good summation.
The numbers tell you exactly the same thing as your eyes told you if you watched the game.
Two words, Joker: Show me.
Phillips' comments are pretty much what you'd expect, but I think he's coming to realize that conservative football is not going to save this season -- or his job. But reckless football won't, either. There has to be balance.