Good morning, ladies and gentlemen of the Big Blue Nation, and welcome to the Tuesday Morning Quickies.
As per usual, I’ll offer my thoughts on Saturday’s game against Mississippi State. One thing is for sure, it’s certainly better to offer thoughts on a victory than a defeat. Here we go:
- The discipline of Kentucky’s secondary against the MSU Air Raid was impressive. Granted, State has yet to master the offense, but it shredded the CFB playoff champs LSU two weeks ago. I can’t say enough about the grim, single-minded determination the Wildcats executed the drop-8 defensive game plan. It was encouraging, to say the least, from the standpoint of how receptive these guys are to coaching.
- Half the interceptions were on the MSU offense, but give the UK defense credit — they took advantage of the opportunities they had, and caught the footballs that they could catch. The one exception was the goal-line INT by Boogie Watson, which was just an All-American type football play made 100% by pure effort and talent.
- The defensive line did a credible job of pressure considering the drop-8 defensive plan. Josh Pashchal’s near pick-six was just a great job of reading the situation and making a play. The occasional blitzes were frequent enough to be effective.
- The offense struggled a bit, but I question the play calling on this one. I thought we threw the ball too much before we established a run game that would allow play-action to be effective. Terry Wilson has a good arm, but he needs more time than he got to look over the defense.
- Having said the above, I thought the O-line gave it’s worst performance all year in both the run and pass game. Whatever the Bulldogs were using to get a good push up front, it certainly worked, and gives Stoops & Co. something to work on.
- This was one of the best punting games I have ever seen by both teams. I’m not sure the Bulldogs’ punter wasn’t a little better than Max Duffy in this game, which is really saying something.
- Matt Ruffolo’s confidence is shaky at best, but at least he made one short field goal. I worry about our field-goal unit, and extra points suddenly have become watch-worthy, which is never good.
- I liked that we targeted the tight ends so often. That needs to happen more, we have some capable if maybe not outstanding personnel in that position.
- We must develop more receiving targets than Josh Ali. And once again, dropped footballs were an issue — not as bad as previous games, but still altogether too common.
That’s it for today. Enjoy your Tuesday.
Tweet of the Morning
So overjoyed @Christopheroats got to return home this weekend.— Mark Stoops (@UKCoachStoops) October 11, 2020
We played #22OatsStrong, won by 22, and shared a special moment with him personally delivering the game ball.https://t.co/THGrzGVgFs pic.twitter.com/HOlHOtk56p
- Kentucky’s football statistical standings look way better than the record to this point. UK is in the top 25 nationally of ten defensive stats, including interceptions (virtually all last weekend), rushing defense, red zone defense, third and fourth down defense among others. Offense is less impressive, but still darn good for Kentucky.
- Jordan Wright is the SEC Defensive Player of the Week, and Max Duffy the POW for special teams. That had to be a coin-flip between him and MSU punter Tucker Day, who had four punts over 60 yards.
- Mark Stoops says Chris Oats could possibly return to the Wildcats, but he still has a long way to go to get there. Our prayers and best wishes go out to him.
- The Kentucky-Georgia matchup in Lexington will be a night game.
- Kentucky 2021 target Skyy Clark is ready to pick his college. Kentucky has long been the front-runner, but North Carolina has been closing the gap lately.
- UK signee BJ Boston is a national high school Player of the Year candidate.
Other Kentucky sports
- Rhyne Howard named pre-season first-team All-American by Lindy’s. That won’t be the last authority to put her on their AA team.
- This was an easy one for me — Missouri over LSU. I heard two strangers talking about it and I was sure they somehow had the outcome reversed.
With all the shocking college football action yesterday, including a Mike Leach’s high-powered ‘offense’ not scoring for first time in his head coaching career, which of these 4 outcomes surprised you the most? @SECNetwork @SEConCBS @UKFootball @HailStateFB @GatorsFB @espn— Oscar Combs (@wildcatnews) October 11, 2020
- Xavier’s Kyky Tandy set the NCAA vertical jump record at 48 inches, tied with Wilt Chamberlain’s NBA record. Man, I didn’t know Wilt could get up like that!
Other sports news
- Two UK players helped lead the Lakers to the NBA championship — Anthony Davis and Rajon Rondo. Two more Wildcats, Bam Adebayo and Tyler Herro, were on the Miami Heat with former Wildcat Pat Riley at the helm. That’s a Wildcat-dominated Finals, if you ask me.
- Tyrese Maxey is on the Knicks’ radar in the NBA draft, and with Kenny Payne as a current assistant coach, you know he’ll be a Maxey advocate.
- Well-timed Venus fly-by looks for signs of life in the clouds.
- Researchers discover the fastest possible speed of sound, and it is way more than you might have thought. Of course, it reaches that near-theoretical max in metallic hydrogen, which is only found on massive gas giants...
- The current state of space debris. There is a lot of junk floating around up there, and it can be a serious navigational hazard to spacecraft.