The Kentucky Wildcats’ (3-6) regular season will come to an end on Saturday, as they ill suit up one last time at Kroger Field to host the South Carolina Gamecocks (2-7).
It’s not been an ideal year for anyone, but it’s been even worse for the Wildcats. While a bright side to their season is they (and South Carolina) will be the lone team to actually complete their 2020 regular season on time, nothing else has seemed to go right for Kentucky.
Issues at quarterback, inconsistencies play-calling, giving up big plays on defense, poor game management, injuries across the board, and the tragic loss of offensive line coach John Schlarman have all weighed heavily on the shoulders of this team. One can only imagine the stress that’s been on each member of the program, which is why it would be a relief for the team to close their season with a win at Kroger Field.
The Gamecocks come to Lexington struggling almost as much as any team in the SEC. After starting 0-2, they rallied with back to back wins against Vanderbilt and No. 15 Auburn.
However, they’re now winless in their last five competitions and don’t seem poised to turn that around on Saturday. Kentucky hasn’t played the easiest schedule over the last month, losing to No. 5 Georgia, No. 1 Alabama and No. 6 Florida by a total margin of 111-16. The Wildcats did pull out a close win at Vanderbilt and will hope to have the same vibes once the clock hits zero on Saturday.
According to ESPN.com, Kentucky is currently a 11.5-point favorite with the over/under set at 47.5. Their Football Power Index is giving Kentucky a 68% chance of victory at home.
- The total has gone UNDER in 5 of Kentucky’s last 7 games.
- Kentucky is 1-4 SU in their last 5 games.
- The total has gone UNDER in 5 of Kentucky’s last 5 games against South Carolina.
- Kentucky is 9-2 ATS in their last 11 games at home.
- Kentucky is 4-1 ATS in their last 5 games when playing at home against South Carolina.
- Kentucky is 3-6 SU in their last 9 games this season.
- Kentucky is 1-4 SU in their last 5 games against an opponent in the Southeastern conference.
- The total has gone UNDER in 4 of Kentucky’s last 5 games against an opponent in the East Division division.
- The total has gone UNDER in 6 of Kentucky’s last 8 games played in December.
- South Carolina is 0-5 ATS in their last 5 games.
- The total has gone OVER in 6 of South Carolina’s last 9 games.
- South Carolina is 0-5 SU in their last 5 games.
- South Carolina is 1-6 ATS in their last 7 games against Kentucky.
- South Carolina is 1-5 SU in their last 6 games against Kentucky.
- The total has gone OVER in 5 of South Carolina’s last 6 games on the road.
- South Carolina is 1-4 ATS in their last 5 games when playing on the road against Kentucky.
- South Carolina is 1-5 ATS in their last 6 games this season.
- South Carolina is 0-5 SU in their last 5 games against an opponent in the Southeastern conference.
- The total has gone OVER in 4 of South Carolina’s last 5 games against an opponent in the East Division division.
Pete Fiutak of College Football News is calling for a 23-16 Wildcats win.
Eric Sorenson with Athlon Sports sees something similar, predicting a 24-13 finish.
Mark Story of the Herald-Leader expects a closer margin, favoring Kentucky 23-21.
TeamRankings projects the Cats to win 28-18, while numberFire is going with a 26-16 victory for Kentucky.
Kentucky head coach Mark Stoops is 5-2 against South Carolina and will have the clear advantage again this year. Those words seem hard to believe this year, but it’s true. Kentucky’s offensive line is the best in the conference and they’ll make sure South Carolina feels that on Saturday. The rest of their units have been plagued by injury or inconsistencies, but a motivated Kentucky squad should make up for some of that. Kentucky comes out motivated and and finishes off a season that many will want to forget.
Final Score: Kentucky 27, South Carolina 13