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FBS Flyover Part 2: A Look At the Teams Kentucky Football has never beaten

We’ll get ‘em one day!

sad mascot Jason Marcum - Sea of Blue

Kentucky Football in its history has lost a lot of games to the other 129 members of the FBS, but 11 teams still remain that they have yet to defeat in their matchups. Some of these droughts can likely be snapped soon. Others, probably not.

Grouped in multiple tiers below are the 11 teams, with Kentucky’s losing record against them. Teams Kentucky has never played are not included.

We might be waiting awhile

  • Ohio State (0-3)
  • Michigan (0-1)
  • Kansas (0-1)
  • SMU (0-1)
  • Houston (0-2)

These five teams are all very different, but the pair of Big 10 rivals are listed here because of their tradition. Not only would Kentucky have to be very, very good to match their season outputs to be grouped with them in a bowl, but they would also have to actually win their games against them. Another season like 2018 could land them a slot in the New Year’s Six against the Buckeyes or Wolverines, but ending those winless records is easier said than done.

Kansas, SMU, and Houston are here for entirely different reasons. First, the Jayhawks are perennially so terrible they often cannot make bowls at all, thus blocking the Cats’ only route to playing them (UK almost never schedules Power 5 schools outside of Louisville). SMU and Houston occasionally go bowling, but not in bowls that quality SEC teams are sent to play in.

Maybe one day Kentucky will play Kansas in football and basketball in the same year. It would be interesting for sure.

In the crosshairs

  • Syracuse (0-1)
  • Pitt (0-1)
  • Duke (0-4)
  • Boston College (0-1)
  • Texas (0-1)
  • Northwestern (0-2)

Bowl games are often the only way Kentucky plays teams from the other four power conferences, and since Kentucky’s only gone bowling 19 teams (a still respectable number, all things considered, especially since they’re 10-9 in those prestigious games), their games against the ACC and Big 12 are few and far between. Only a few of these games took place this millennium, and the Texas loss came in the historic Bear Bryant days of the 50’s.

All six of these Power 5 teams go bowling most years. The thing is most of them don’t play as well as Kentucky to bowl them. With a strong 8-4, 9-3, or even 10-2 season in the next few years, Kentucky could very well find itself facing Texas again in a showdown for the ages.

Even if Kentucky posts 6-6 or 7-5 records (highly unlikely given how talented they’ve become under Mark Stoops), the four ACC teams and Northwestern would easily land on their slate.

But who can forget the Wildcats’ bowl loss to Northwestern in the 2017 Music City Bowl? A failed 2-point conversion was all that stood between Kentucky and the end of this winless streak begun all the way back with a 7-0 loss in 1928. Cue the phonograph music, people.

Oh well. They still beat Tennessee that year.


Which Kentucky football winless streak do you think will end first?

This poll is closed

  • 26%
    (53 votes)
  • 8%
    (17 votes)
  • 8%
    Boston College
    (17 votes)
  • 6%
    Ohio State
    (13 votes)
  • 8%
    (16 votes)
  • 29%
    (58 votes)
  • 12%
    (24 votes)
198 votes total Vote Now