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247 Sports assess best/worse-case scenarios for Kentucky Football

Devin Leary will be the man under center, and the Cats could go as far as the NC State transfer takes them.

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The Kentucky Wildcats, while they did make a bowl game, didn’t have the successful season many were preparing for in 2022. Behind former Penn State transfer Will Levis, the Cats struggled down the stretch, including an embarrassing home loss to Vanderbilt.

Levis went to the NFL and is set to play for the Tennessee Titans this upcoming season, although making headlines of his own by dropping outside of the first 30 picks.

Without Levis, the Cats, who do have an improved offensive line, will depend on Devin Leary for the bulk of the offensive load. Transfer running back Ray Davis will also be a huge part of the Liam Coen-led attack.

That said, Leary is transferring from NC State, where he had both good and bad seasons. If the Leary that threw for 35 touchdowns comes out, not the injury-prone one that threw for just 11 last season in six games, the Cats may near double-digit victories.

Per 247 Sports, the Wildcats’ ceiling is that of a nine-win team, with the downside being that of a five-win team. They gave their best- and worst-case scenarios for each team in the SEC. Here’s what Brad Crawford had to say about Kentucky football as the new season nears.

“The early-season schedule is such a cakewalk for the Wildcats that little may be known by the time Kentucky opens SEC play in Nashville in Week 4. Mark Stoops’ team can get to eight wins if transfer quarterback Devin Leary stays healthy and the defensive front is able to dictate pace in one of those tough late-season matchups with Tennessee, Mississippi State, Alabama and South Carolina. As of now, that could be an 0-4 stretch,” Crawford said.

Under Mark Stoops' 10-year tenure, the Cats have been to a bowl game seven times, winning four of them. He has helped right the ship, and the Cats should be a good position to be at least a formidable opponent in the SEC.