Well, once again, Kentucky managed to prove that a change of coaches is not, in and of itself, enough to make Kentucky anything other than the train wreck we were last year.
Let's not disrespect our betters. Congratulations to Western, my alma mater. Normally, there would be a bit of pride associated with that statement. With Bobby Petrino, a person whom I loathe with every single fiber of my everlasting soul, I cannot root for them, ever. They are dead to me until he is gone. With that said, Petrino is an outstanding head coach. I can hate him, and still admire his prowess as a football coach. But if I can accurately say that I "hate" anyone, it would be Bobby Petrino.
Let's run down a quick list of what went wrong, then what went right:
What went wrong
- Defense. No explanation necessary.
- Let's be honest: Mark Stoops has not yet proved he is worthy of his position. He was badly outcoached. I'm not hating on Mark, I'm just telling it like it is. An experienced Master demonstrated in no uncertain terms that Stoops is still a Padawan.
- Andrew Jackson was right. He backed up his mouth with his game.
- The secondary wasn't just bad, it was pathetic.
- The defensive line, supposedly our strength, was embarrassing. Is this the best D.J. Eliot can do?
- Discipline? What discipline? How many drives were killed by dumb, brain-dead false-start penalties?
- Joker Phillips lost to Western by less than this. The score was closer than it should have been. We took turnovers 1.5-1 and managed to look uncompetitive.
- Missing an extra point? Seriously?
What went right
- I liked our special teams play. Bradley Dale Paveto can coach. That's good.
- Max Smith looked like an Air Raid quarterback.
- Jalen Whitlow is a great athlete, but he is not the best quarterback for this offense. With that said, he was a big factor in the success Kentucky did have.
- The offensive line was better than I expected.
- The defense did one thing right — they took the ball away from Western.
- I liked Ryan Timmons, even though he fumbled. He has skill and speed.
- Jojo Kemp needs to get more reps. He looked good.
Folks, this sucks out loud. I am as disappointed as I have ever been as a Kentucky fan. I am as disappointed as I was when we lost by 30 to Tennessee in basketball last year, and that came with a legitimate excuse.
To coach Stoops: Welcome to the SEC. You aren't getting any passes from me, ever. I gave Joker Phillips a pass, and he made me look like a fool. I don't care to be made a fool of again. Deliver, or lose me. It's that simple. That may not be fair. Deal with it.
This was, in my view, an uncompetitive game. I am not accepting that game after game, especially to opponents who should be inferior. Do better.
That is all.
P.S. I just got an email from the Herald-Leader that says "EKU beats Kentucky Football in Stoops' debut, 35-26."
EKU is an FCS program. They probably would have beaten us also.