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Kentucky Wildcats Football: Say My Name

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Mark Stoops and his team made a statement and the Cards are now on notice.

NCAA Football: Kentucky at Louisville Jamie Rhodes-USA TODAY Sports

The Euphoria I felt after the Kentucky Wildcats 41-38 win over the Louisville Cardinals was close to what I experienced after the 2012 national title game.

The differences were that I was happier in 2012 because it was a title, but the shock value wasn’t the same because we all expected that win. Kentucky had the better team, the better record, the better coach, and the better players.

On Saturday, Louisville was the team that was supposedly superior in all of those categories. After all, they boasted the Heisman trophy front-runner with Lamar Jackson.

They had already reached nine wins. Bobby Petrino is light years ahead of Mark Stoops as a coach. Their defense was full of NFL caliber players. Their team had flirted with the Final Four of the College Football Playoffs all season long.

The ‘Cats were 6-5 with wins over “lowly” SEC East teams while the Cards had blown out traditional powerhouse Florida State and took another traditional powerhouse Clemson to the wire on their field.

For years now, we have heard how great the Louisville football program is and how crummy our program is in comparison. We’ve had to stomach the phrase “Bobby Ball”. But the previous two Governor’s Cup games showed us that the gap they claimed was a chasm was more like a thin crack.

But of course both of those games were flukes. Louisville was better, Kentucky just played beyond their talent level because they were rivalry games. THIS was going to be the year that the Cards were going to destroy the ‘Cats.

They were a 27-point home favorite. They were mad after the embarrassment they suffered at Houston and they were tired of the playoff committee disrespecting their team. The Wildcats were going to pay for those sins and in a big way.

But that’s not what happened. Kentucky compiled more yards than the Cards. They converted more first downs. They forced more turnovers. Stephen Johnson outplayed Lamar Jackson.

The Kentucky defense got to Jackson more than the Louisville defense got to Johnson. And in the end, Austin MacGinnis proved to be the hero once again. Kentucky was better in every facet of the game.

Louisville is a very good team. Lamar Jackson is going to win the Heisman and he deserves it. One of the reasons this feels so good is because Kentucky beat a really, really good Louisville team that has the best player in the country. They didn’t beat a Steve Kragthorpe team. Mark Stoops beat Bobby Petrino and Eddie Gran called a better offensive game than Bobby Petrino.

Kentucky prevented Louisville from a record sixth straight win in the series and they prevented them from going to 15-14 overall. The ‘Cats once again own the series and don’t let the Cardinal faithful talk about the “modern series” record. It’s pretty convenient that they like to talk about records only when their team starts winning, don’t ya think?

Now Kentucky football is back. All of the cockiness and hubris of Bobby Petrino, Tom Jurich, their players, and their fan base has turned to ashes in their mouths. The players and the coaches that refused to say the word “Kentucky” are now forced to face the fact that the team they thought too beneath them to even say their name once again own the state.

In the immortal words of Heisenberg, “Say My Name.”

*The very end of the video has some NSFW language so beware if you have sensitive ears.