The Kentucky Wildcats improved to 3-0 on the season Saturday, but it was far from easy as they beat FCS foe Chattanooga 28-23 at Kroger Field. At one point, they trailed 16-14 in the fourth quarter before rallying to victory.
Saturday saw Kentucky’s offense that totaled over 500 yards in each of their first two games struggle as Will Levis completed 23/35 passes for 254 yards, two touchdowns and two interceptions. He also lost a fumble.
After a rough day all around, Levis called the close call a “good wake-up call” when speaking to the media postgame.
Will Levis said the close call vs. Chattanooga is "a good wake-up call." pic.twitter.com/mw6UlK9qWK— Nick Roush (@RoushKSR) September 18, 2021
The five-point win saw UK only out-gain the visiting Mocs 356-339. Chattanooga was also the better team on third-down as they converted 7/15 (46.6%) of their attempts while UK converted 5/11 (45.5%).
To Levis’ credit, he did hit Izayah Cummings for the go-ahead touchdown pass in the fourth quarter to put Kentucky ahead 21-16.
The Wildcats lost the turnover battle, but the one turnover forced by Kentucky’s defense wound up being the difference that saved them from an embarrassing loss, as Tyrell Ajian picked off Mocs quarterback Cole Copeland at the Kentucky 5-yard line in the fourth quarter and returned it for a 95-yard touchdown.
For Kentucky, this must be exactly what Levis described it as: “A good wake-up” call.” Their next seven games are all against SEC opponents, starting with a trip to South Carolina next Saturday to take on an improved Gamecocks team under the hostile lights of Williams-Brice Stadium.