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Friday Quickies: Righting the Ship

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Can Mark Stoops and Eddie Gran get this program back on track, or will the offensive issues prove to be too much to overcome?

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AP Photo/David Stephenson

Coming into the 2020 season, expectations were once again sky high for the Kentucky Wildcats.

While there have been some bright spots — mainly shutting out a Mike Leach Mississippi State offense and thrashing the Vols in their own building for the first time in my lifetime — there’s no question this season has been a disappointment overall.

Kentucky enters this weekend as a 24-point underdog against Florida after losing by 60 to Alabama last week, and there’s a good chance that the Cats will be 3-6 going into their finale against South Carolina next week.

The Cats’ offense has been nothing short of a disaster, as they 106th nationally in scoring offense, 121st in passing offense, and 121st in total offense out of 127 FBS teams who’ve played this season.

Then on Thursday, we saw those shortcomings finally lead to a big decommit, as three-star receiver Armond Scott backed off his pledge. While one decommit isn’t going to make or break a program, it feels like Scott is the first of more defections to come if the offense doesn’t find itself over these final few games of the 2020 season.

With college offenses operating at a level the sport has never seen, Kentucky is still trying to win with defense and ball-control offense, which clearly isn’t going to be enough anymore if they’re going to compete with the big dogs in the SEC.

Ideally, Kentucky’s offense will come alive Saturday in Gainesville, then take it to another level next week against the Gamecocks and end 2020 on a high note. But if not, big changes must be made this offseason, perhaps as drastic as finding a new offensive coordinator.

Will Mark Stoops and the Cats be able to right the ship, or will they continue trending backwards after getting this program to a level not seen since the days of Bear Bryant?

Here’s to hoping Saturday brings some positive momentum for this offense.

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