Entering this unprecedented college football season, there was no doubt that playing a 10-game SEC slate would be taxing on Mark Stoops and his program.
Any rationale fan understood that finishing with a record even above .500 would be no easy feat. But hopes remained high, maybe too high, for a Kentucky team that had taken major leaps forward over the last three seasons.
Now with only one remaining regular season game on the schedule the Cats find themselves in a frustrating lull at 3-6 — searching for one more win to end the 2020 campaign on some form of a high note.
Standing in their way of tasting one final victory will be a 2-7 South Carolina team who’s in even worse shape than Kentucky.
UK’s final regular season game will take place on Saturday at Kroger Field but as of now a kick-off time has not been set.
The Gamecocks will be limping their way to Lexington fresh off parting ways with their coach, Will Muschamp, just a few weeks ago. Muschamp spent the previous five seasons in Columbia but never got things off the ground enough to ultimately satisfy the fan base of the direction of the program
Similar to Kentucky’s experience in Gainesville, USC was pummeled by Georgia 45-16 on Saturday.
The beat down on their home field, marked their fifth straight loss.
The Gamecocks, now lead by interim coach Mike Bobo, haven’t won a game since they squeaked by Auburn way back on October 17th.
So it’s fair to say that both teams will be desperate for a win in this one.
Kentucky will need to score points to win a football game and the offense has been showing little to no improvement from week-to-week.
“It’s losing football, it’s not good enough. It’s not going to win games if you can’t get first downs. Not good enough.”
Stoops said after another pitiful offensive performance on Saturday.
There won’t be any room for excuses when they line up against USC because the Gamecocks have given up at least 30 points in seven of their nine games this season.
So, who plays quarterback?
Your guess is as good as mine. At some point, Eddie Gran and Mark Stoops will have decide whether they are playing to win Saturday’s game or to do whatever prepares the program best heading into 2021.
Regardless, you’d expect to see multiple guys get a shot under center.
If the Cats can’t get something going against a unit that surrenders over 445 yards per contest then there will be some tough questions getting asked this off season. It’s one thing to struggle against the likes of Alabama and Georgia but there is no sugar coasting how bad this South Carolina team is.
Whether it’s Wilson, Gatewood or Allen — Kentucky should have enough talent and discipline to put some points up on the board against one of the worst teams in the conference.
Winning cures a lot. So a blow-out victory in their last regular season game would go a long way for the program and the fan base heading into the off-season.
The Cats haven’t been a very fun football team to watch over the last several weeks and now they’re left with only one game to change that.
There will be no excuses in this one as Kentucky will be favored to win the game.
Game: South Carolina Gamecocks at Kentucky Wildcats
Location: Kroger Field
Date: Saturday December 5th
Start Time: 7:30 PM EST
TV Channel: SEC Network
Online Stream: WatchESPN and fuboTV
Radio: UK Sports Network.
Odds: Kentucky opened as a 10.5-point favorite.
Early Prediction: TeamRankings projects a 31-21 victory for Kentucky.