The Kentucky Wildcats improved to 2-2 on the season after they dominated the No. 18 ranked Tennessee Volunteers on Saturday afternoon by a score of 34-7. It was the largest win over Tennessee since 1935.
More on this below, but Kentucky started the scoring with back-to-back pick sixes to take a 14-0 lead on the Vols. Tennessee’s next pass was also intercepted, which should have been a touchdown, but Keaton Upshaw dropped a pass right on the money in the end zone. UK ended up with a field to take a 17-0 lead.
After that, the defense was dead due to spending the majority of the half on the field after the two pick sixes and stagnant offense. Tennessee drove right down the field running the ball right down Kentucky’s throat to cut the lead to 17-7 right before the half.
In the second half, the defense dominated. Terry Wilson threw an absolute dot to Allen Daily in the end zone to take a 24-7 lead early in the third quarter. A Matt Ruffolo field goal extended the lead to 27-7 and a Chris Rodriguez touchdown run made it 34-7. An absolutely dominant performance by the Cats. What a win!
Next up, we have a schedule change as the Cats will now travel to Columbia to take on the Missouri Tigers next Saturday instead of the Georgia Bulldogs.
This is the defense what we all expected...and more
Okay, now this is what we love to see. Back-to-back dominant defense performances shows what we all expected going into the season. This is one of the best defenses in the entire country.
Sure, it was a slow start to the season, but looking back, Auburn had several short fields and Ole Miss is simply the real deal. Against a potent Mike Leach coached Mississippi State squad, Kentucky finally woke up. Today, they continued that domination.
Jarrett Guarantano has dominated Kentucky in his career despite mediocre numbers against the rest of the SEC. That changed on Saturday as Kentucky flipped the script and dominated him.
Tennessee had some success running the ball—mainly when UK’s defense was exhausted at the end of the first half after back-to-back pick sixes—but other than that, Tennessee had nothing.
What a performance once again.
Terry Wilson is the quarterback
Some Kentucky fans won’t be happy to hear this, but Terry Wilson is the man. Point blank. Period.
Wilson’s been good in three of Kentucky’s four games this season. He’s had way too many dropped passes and way too conservative playcalling, but outside of that, he’s been good.
Wilson can run the ball well. He’s accurate on short throws. I believe if he was able to take more shots downfield, he’d be much better. Of course, his decision-making is questionable every now and then, especially on “read options,” but his playmaking is solid.
Terry Wilson is QB1. And that’s the bottom line.
Quinton Bohanna suffered a knee injury
The defense played well, as discussed above, and Bohanna was a big part of that. He’s finally looked like he’s put it all together this season. The potential has always been there, but it’s hard to gauge that impact of a nose guard.
While they can be disruptive at times, they’re not usually pass rushers that show up in the stat sheet. Well, that hasn’t been the case for Bohanna this season. He’s been all over the field, disrupting both the pass and the run.
His ability to stay on the field has been impressive this year as he struggled with stamina over his first few years in Lexington. He’s played a lot and he’s been really, really good.
However, he was injured in the second quarter and was ruled out for the rest of the game with a knee injury. Hopefully, it’s just like Josh Paschal last week and it’s more precautionary than serious, but it’s worrisome nonetheless.
Let’s pray for Bohanna’s health and that what could be his final season isn’t already over.
Kelvin Joseph is the Bossman
As Tom Hart mentioned on the broadcast today, after the first two weeks, Kelvin Joseph looked like an intern rather than the Bossman. Well, let’s be abundantly clear: he is in fact the Bossman.
Like the rest of the defense, Joseph’s real talent is now on display. He’s the real deal and he might be the best defensive back during the Stoops era. Joseph’s ability to read the quarterback and break on the ball is insanely impressive.
He talked the talk in the first two weeks, but he didn’t walk the walk. Now, he owns the whole sidewalk and then some.
The streak is over
The streak is over and it couldn’t be better. Kentucky has ended multiple streaks since Mark Stoops has been the head coach and today was no different. As I’m sure you’ve all heard, Kentucky hasn’t won in Knoxville since 1984 and they’ve only won two of the last 33 games played against the Vols.
Well, they finally ended the Neyland Stadium streak and they did it in dominant fashion. What an absolute beatdown by the Cats.
We knew coming into the game that Kentucky’s defense would be solid, but we needed a good offensive performance to have a chance. The defense and the offense absolutely balled out on the way to a big blowout win over the No. 18 ranked team in the country.
Kentucky is here, folks. Two statement wins after a slow start and I think we know this team’s identity.
The offense isn’t amazing, but it’s competent and the defense makes up for any mistakes. We all expected it, but it’s coming to fruition: this is one of the most talented Kentucky teams this decade.
What a game. What a performance.