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Facts and Figures from the Storied UK/Tennessee Rivalry

Assuming the Volunteers can survive Frank Martin’s Gamecocks on Tuesday, Tennessee should arrive in Lexington next weekend as the number one ranked team in the country. This would only be the second time the Cats have faced a #1 ranked Vols team. The first came in 2008, when Tennessee was led by Maysville, KY native and SEC career 3-point leader Chris Lofton.

UT is Kentucky’s most common historical opponent, and with over 200 matchups between them, there are plenty of interesting factoids to piece through:

  • You could argue the first game between these two rivals was UK’s best defensive performance in the series, since it was the only time either team could only muster single-digit points; Kentucky won 26-5 in 1910.
  • UK’s 1000th win (the first NCAA program to do so) came in a 69-66 victory against Tennessee in Knoxville in 1969.
  • The longest winning streak in the series? From February of 1950 to January of 1960, UK notched 20 straight victories over the Vols. Had Tennessee not won the January 14th, 1950 matchup, they would’ve gone through the entire 1950’s without a win over Kentucky.
  • One player set to play this weekend is already in the rivalry record books. Grant Williams shares an honor with Marcus Haislip: most blocks by a Volunteer in a single game in the series with 4. Anthony Davis holds the overall single game series record with 7.
  • UK and UT have faced off 225 times. Only 12 of those games went to overtime, with Tennessee leading that meta-matchup 7-5. So on the 5.3% chance Saturday’s game goes to OT, don’t count on history for help there.
  • However, of the 16 times these two teams have met in the SEC Tournament, UK has won 12 of those. So regardless of the next two outcomes, you shouldn’t bet against the Cats come March.

(Stats courtesy of

History will be the focal point of next weekend’s game. Two long-feuding SEC foes set to have one of their most competitive wars to date. Time to write the next chapter.


Article written by Jay Winkler

Avid fan of UK Athletics, WWE, and chicken wings. Preferably at the same time.

20 responses to “Facts and Figures from the Storied UK/Tennessee Rivalry”

  1. TheAssman

    TN will be the #1 ranked team coming into Rupp next weekend regardless of the outcome against USC.

    1. jaw2152

      Exactly what I was thinking. Like they say facts are optional here.

    2. BigolBlue

      You dont think Duke will jump them this week? Beat #3 on the road

  2. runningunnin.454

    I hope the Cats aren’t looking past LSU…like some people.

    1. 4everUKblue

      LSU will be a tough game IMO.

  3. Rick_S

    Let’s hold off with the Tenn game till after Tues..We have a very good LSU team first..I think LSU is as good as we are..Id rank a close 3rd right now…

    1. maximumscott

      LSU is good but they arent on our level. The only way they win is if we let them. PERIOD.

  4. Ez21

    Wtf is a meta-matchup?

    1. jaw2152

      It is a mega matchup without spellcheck.

    2. timbo

      Or, it could be the actual English prefix with various definitions referencing order or order of magnitude…

  5. sj

    One game at a time my friend!! I watched a little bit of LSU yesterday, Waters and Reid are really good

  6. Cmart0907

    Let’s get past LSU First.

  7. antiquefurnitureandmidgets

    This is really, really strange. Just looking past LSU? Maybe you looked at the schedule incorrectly and saw Vandy. Not that we should take any win for granted. Just an odd, odd post.

  8. blueblue
  9. blueblue

    Can you guys confirm rumor of Anthony Edwards to UK?

    1. Kentuckybbnfan01

      I follow the Instagram page bbn United that posted that he shortly deleted after so my guess is that it is false

  10. clarks

    Wouldn’t surprise me for Anthony Edward’s very close with hagans

  11. catsarerunnin

    When do we play the Vols? Not Tuesday right?

    1. Luether

      Look at the frigging schedule, dildo…

  12. catsarerunnin

    My sources say you don’t have the intelligence to comprehend sarcasm…