Now Bowl eligible for the seventh time under coach Mark Stoops, the Kentucky Wildcats will look to expand its win total this week against Vanderbilt on Saturday at Kroger Field.
The Wildcats barely escaped with a win last week against Missouri, thanks to the heads-up play of Colin Goodfellow, who turned a bad snap into a game-winning play that unfortunately resulted in a season-ending injury for the senior punter. Last week’s win moves Kentucky to 6-3 overall (3-3 in the SEC) with games remaining against Vandy, No. 1-ranked Georgia, and the season finale against in-state rival Louisville.
The good news for Kentucky is that running back Chris Rodriguez had a breakout game in Columbia, rushing for 112 yards on 29 carries as quarterback Will Levis has been limited in the run game due to lingering injuries. Rodriguez, who missed the first four games of the season for disciplinary reasons, is back in the mix to challenge the school’s all-time rushing record, set by Benny Snell who now plays for the Pittsburgh Steelers.
Rodriguez needs 200 more yards to pass Moe Williams for third all-time and is chasing Sonny Collins (3,835) and Snell (3,873) who broke the record in only three seasons.
With offensive coordinator Rich Scangarello moving up to the press week last week against Mizzou, Kentucky was able to generate just enough offense to get over the hump despite limited mobility from Levis, who was sacked six times. However, Kentucky is currently ranked last in the conference in total offense and will need another big effort from the defense to fend off Vanderbilt, who remains winless in the conference at 0-5.
Due to a flu outbreak, the Commodores will be short-handed this week and will be without several key players, including starting quarterback AJ Swann, who is out with an injury. Backup quarterback Mike Wright, who started Vandy’s first two games of the season, will now get the call.
Kentucky enters the weekend favored by 17.5 points via DraftKings Sportsbook.
The Game of the Week features No. 9 Alabama at No. 11 Ole Miss in Oxford as Lane Kiffin looks to snap an 0-2 record against his former boss Nick Saban.
The second College Football Playoff Poll has Georgia as the undisputed No. 1 team in the nation after knocking off Tennessee last week. A pair of Big Ten teams come in next with Ohio State (2) and Michigan (3) both making a strong case for the playoffs, while TCU comes in at No. 4. Other SEC teams in the poll are Tennessee (5), LSU (7), and Alabama (9).
It should be another great of SEC football so be sure to check out our picks and TV listings below. Go Cats!
Game of the Week
(10) Alabama at (11) Ole Miss
Lane Kiffin is always a great quote, but the third-year Ole Miss Coach took things to a whole new level this week when he said that any talk about the demise of Alabama’s Nick Saban and the Crimson Tide football program was nothing more than “G.O.A.T. Fuel” (Greatest Of All Time) as he prepares to face his old mentor on Saturday in Oxford.
Saban, who has won seven national championships, is considered the greatest college football coach of all-time. However, recent losses to Tennessee and LSU, has come pundits claiming that the Alabama dynasty may be officially dead.
Kiffin, who previously served as offensive coordinator under Saban at Alabama, strongly disagrees. In fact, at his weekly press conference, Kiffin said that: “GOAT fuel is the opposite of rat poison”, a phrase that Saban has used often to describe the negative impact that too much praise can have on his team prior to game day. Kiffin says that the opposite occurs when people count out Saban and the Crimson Tide, providing even more motivation to crush its next opponent.
Ironically, it’s Kiffin and Ole Miss who control their own destiny as the Rebels are currently tied atop the SEC West with LSU, who both have one conference loss. Alabama, however, now sits 4-2 in the conference and has virtually no chance of making the playoffs this season, but can give LSU a clear path to the SEC title game with a win in Oxford.
Alabama enters the game as a 12-point favorite.
- Georgia 6-0
- Tennessee 4-1
- South Carolina 3-3
- Kentucky 3-3
- Florida 2-4
- Missouri 2-4
- Vanderbilt 0-5
SEC Football TV Schedule Week 11
- (1) Georgia at Mississippi State (7:00 p.m.on ESPN)
- Missouri at (5) Tennessee (12:00 p.m. on CBS)
- (7) LSU at Arkansas (12:00 p.m. on ESPN)
- (9) Alabama at (11) Ole Miss (3:30 p.m. on CBS)
- Vanderbilt at Kentucky (12:00 p.m. on SEC Network)
- South Carolina at Florida (4:00 p.m. on SEC Network)
- Texas A&M at Auburn (7:30 p.m. on SEC Network)