What a game.
No matter what the rosters look like, during the Mark Stoops era, the Kentucky Wildcats have usually made it exciting against the Florida Gators.
And this time, the Cats pulled it out at home to knock off top-10 Florida and go 5-0 with a score of 20-13.
While the game was not perfect, it was a huge win, and the Cats are in a great place moving forward.
Josh Paschal - Paschal did it all tonight. He lined up on the interior of the defense line, he rushed from the end, and no matter where he came from he almost always found himself near the ball. Paschal had multiple tackles for loss, and ultimately had the biggest play of the game for Kentucky when he blocked a field goal that was ultimately returned for a touchdown.
Chris Rodriguez - No, Rodriguez did not put up massive numbers. But he stayed within his game, always ran down hill, and most importantly held onto the football. Rodriguez is a top-tier SEC running back if he takes care of the football, and he did that on a grand stage against Florida.
Wan’Dale Robinson - Is it really possible for Robinson’s stock to keep going up? He makes big plays consistently and has proven himself to be one of the best pass catchers in the SEC. Two of Kentucky’s biggest offensive plays against the Gators came on screens to Robinson. Just think about what he could do if he caught the ball downfield...or had more screens called for him.
DeAndre Square - It is no surprise that Square led the Wildcats in tackles. But even when he was not in on the play, he was near the football on every snap. He played great pass coverage, made big plays, and commanded the Wildcats defense on a great performance.
JJ Weaver - Much like Square, it seemed like Weaver was all over the field on Saturday. And he had a HUGE interception in the fourth quarter to put Kentucky in a position to score one last time to seal the deal.
Kavosiey Smoke - I am 100% putting Smoke on this list because he did something today I did not know was in his skill set. Smoke was the reason that Robinson scored his touchdown early in the game. With this incredible block, Smoke made a huge contribution to the offense that you will not see in the stat sheet.
Wan'dale Robinson is ELECTRIC ⚡️ @UKFootball pic.twitter.com/Pb3C7ru7bM— SEC Network (@SECNetwork) October 2, 2021
The Crowd - A large chunk of the eleventy billion false start penalties called on Florida happened because of the raucous crowd at Kroger Field. They put on full display the power of an awesome fan base.
Carrington Valentine - Valentine did have several tackles tonight, but that’s because the receiver he was covering kept catching the ball. The Gators definitely picked on him in their first scoring drive, and he was flagged for pass interference penalty in the third quarter that thankfully did not come back to haunt him. Still, he’s got to step up, or offenses are going to continue throwing at him early and often.
Colin Goodfellow - We have been spoiled for years with Max Duffy. So Goodfellow has a large shadow to live in. But in a game like this a 35-yard punt does a lot of damage in the field position game. Thankfully, the Cats overcame it and are victorious.
Will Levis - Levis was a lot better with his feet than with his arm tonight. The stats will show a few long passes, but that is the funny thing about passing stats. A 41-yard screen pass for a touchdowns looks great in the books, when Levis had very little to do with the outcome. He hit zero deep balls, failed to convert on nearly every 3rd down, and threw an interception that could have buried the Wildcats. He has to be better for Kentucky to reach their potential.
Even with some fallers, the Cats are 5-0 and in line to compete for the SEC East. To quote Ice Cube, today was a good day.