The Kentucky Wildcats enter the home stretch of their season today versus the Charleston Southern Buccaneers. With three quarters of the season gone, the Wildcats are still two wins away from bowl eligibility and three away from a sure thing. That's not a nice place to be with only three games left.
Game particulars are as follows, courtesy of UKAthletics.com:
|Charleston Southern @ Kentucky|
|Game Notes|| UK Notes | UK Depth Chart |
|Date & Time||Saturday, Nov. 6 |
|Coverage||TV: BBSN |
Online Video via ESPN3 (subject to blackout)
|Location||Commonwealth Stadium |
This game represents an actual must-win for Kentucky. Charleston Southern is an FCS school, and it would be a major upset if they were to come into Commonwealth Stadium and knock off Kentucky.
Late breaking bad news is that Derrick Locke will not be playing today, although he will be dressing. It is very important that we get him back for the final two games of the season -- Vanderbilt at home in Commonwealth, and Tennessee on the road in Knoxville -- and we can only hope that this is his last game of the season on the bench.
Scheduling FCS school games are a sore spot with many fans of FBS schools, but they are found in almost every SEC schedule each and every year. They obviously represent "guaranteed" wins (I use the parenthesis in memory of the 2007 Appalachian State upset of the Michigan Wolverines in the Big House), but they can also represent opportunities for younger players to improve and gain confidence. Let's hope that's what happens today, particularly defensively, because the Wildcats need some improvement and confidence there.
Some interesting subplots also exist in this game:
- Randall Cobb has an opportunity to use this game as a springboard to put him in position to break Tim Tebow's SEC record for touchdowns scored if he chooses to return next year;
- Mike Hartline having a big day here (400 yards) would keep him right in it for the #1 passer in the SEC. Mallett Currently leads by 47 yards, but in 1 fewer game.
- Danny Travathan currently leads the SEC in tackles with 10.8 per game. He could solidify his All-SEC season with a big game today.
Finally, Kentucky needs to show it can play a game without turnovers. Not only that, the Kentucky defense needs to really work hard to get turnovers. UK started the year with a really positive turnover margin, but the last four games have turned that positive into a giant, hairy negative.
I myself will be doing the Breeder's Cup thing today, but I'll be checking in on the game when I get a chance.