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Sunday Headlines: Taking steps back Edition

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The Kentucky Wildcats have now dropped two straight on the road in the SEC.

NCAA Football: Kentucky at Mississippi State Matt Bush-USA TODAY Sports

The Kentucky Wildcats sure didn’t look the part of a top 15 team last night as the Mississippi State Bulldogs walloped them 31-17 in Starkville and it could have easily been 38-17 if a penalty that nullified a late touchdown had not been assessed.

The Kentucky offense managed a meager 216 yards while Mike Leach’s Air Raid attack was as balanced as it has been all season. The Bulldogs rushed for 94 yards and quarterback Will Rogers threw for 344. Will Levis took multiple steps back last night and looked as bad has he has all season. Kentucky couldn’t get anything done on the ground against a good Mississippi State run defense. For the second game in a row the Big Blue Wall got no push and was stymied at the point of attack.

One of the most frustrating thing about the game is that Mississippi State didn’t really do anything special. It wasn’t like Will Rogers was throwing bombs down the field all night. His longest completion went for just 29 yards. What was did was simple: he used the soft middle of the field and treated the passing game like it was a rush attack.

Kentucky is a mess on offense and the defense just isn’t good enough to bail them out. They don’t generate turnovers while Kentucky continues to give them away like Halloween Candy.

Next comes a tough home game against a Tennessee team that looks much better than we had thought it would before the season. It’s crucial to avoid a three game slide in order to preserve what could be a very special season. The door is still open but it’s almost just a crack.

Tweets of the Day

Mark Stoops prides himself on toughness but there wasn’t much toughness in that performance last night. Mississippi State did whatever they wanted on both sides of the ball.

Beat Tennessee at home and the rest of the schedule is more than manageable. But Saturday is massive game in regards to how this season ultimately plays out.

Headlines

Bulldogs feast on turnovers in Starkville | Cats Illustrated- After a couple of clean games the Wildcats reverted back to some sloppy, careless football.

Three takeaways from a bad performance | Cats Pause- The bad defense was one of the most disappointing things that happened last night.

SEC Power Rankings | SDS- The Cats hold steady at sixth in the SEC here but I’m surprised Mississippi State didn’t leapfrog them considering the dominant performance last night.

Wan’Dale Robinson says they have Will Levis’ back | KSR- Will Levis was a bright sport in the Georgia loss but he was definitely not that last night. But Robinson being his biggest advocates sure goes a long way with the rest of the team.

Senior Blair Green out for the season | Vaught’s Views- A significant leg injury will keep the senior basketball player from enjoying her senior season. We wish her a speedy recovery. A tough blow for the young lady.

Turnovers and lack of toughness doom Cats | WDRB- Too many turnovers and not enough toughness is not a good mix.

Projected top 25 | CBS- Kentucky is out of the top 25 in this projection. I don’t think that will happen but I guess it wouldn’t really be surprising.

Will Rogers and opportunistic defense propel Bulldogs | For Whom the Cowbell Tolls- This blog picked the score dead on and are right about this as well.

Atlanta is one win from the World Series | ESPN- Another close win sets up a do or die scenario for Houston.

NFL odds, lines, and point spreads | Sporting News- Get those bets in now.

Jason Ence and I broke down the performance last night on the Kentucky Fish and Wildlife Postgame Show. Former player Justin Jeffries joined us for an in-depth discussion and we had Mark Stoops’ presser.