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Chris Low Says UK Best Case Scenario Is 7-5. Is He Right?


The guys at ESPN’s SEC blog have been going through the best and worst case scenarios for each SEC team headed into the football season.  They finally got around to Kentucky and the results are about what you’d expect.  They are reasonable predictions for a team we still don’t know much about, but that doesn’t mean we won’t debate them.  Since they disabled embedding, I’ve transcribed a decent portion of the commentary, but you can always watch it here if too much reading hurts your eyes.  Poor thing.

Worst Case:  I think it’s 4-8 for Kentucky. Which would mean they would probably have to lose one of their four nonconference games, and really just struggle on offense.  If they have trouble in the passing games, teams are really able to cheat against them, load that line of scrimmage and really come after Morgan Newton it could be a long season.  And again, I say 4-8 is a worst case scenario.  Obviously that would snap the bowl streak.

If the one nonconference loss is Louisville, I have to agree that is probably the worst case scenario.  Of course losing to any of the other nonconference opponents (WKU, Central Michigan or Jacksonville State,) would be ultimately more embarrassing.  Still, even a 4-8 season with a win over Louisville has a tinge of brightness to it, despite being utterly disappointing.  In other words, worst case scenario is a loss to Louisville, another loss to Tennessee and no bowl game, regardless of win total.

Best Case: I think 7-5 in the regular season, getting back to a bowl for the sixth straight season, winning that bowl game and winning 8 games. Now that may not seem like a lot, but when you look at where Kentucky was before Rich Brooks got there several years ago, and what Joker Phillips has done with it, I still think that’s progress. I think getting to 7-5 this year, getting to a bowl game and getting that 8th win is the best case scenario for this season.  For that to happen, the key game – third week of the season – against Louisville in Lexington.  I think that’s a game Kentucky has to win.

It may be the blue tinted glasses I’m wearing, but I have to disagree with Low on this one.  I think 7-5 (8-5 with a bowl win) is certainly a better than average case and in all circumstances considered a pretty largely successful season.  But the schedule is there to win more than 7, honestly.  If we are going ‘best case scenario,’ Kentucky wins the first three games at home, starting 3-0.  They likely lose the next three no matter what (Florida, @LSU, @USC,) but in a best case scenario I can see them stealing one of the three.  Still, we can go conservative and have them sitting 3-3 headed into the home game with Jacksonville State.  This opens a three game home streak with Jacksonville State, Mississippi State and Ole Miss – all winnable games.  With best case scenario rules, Kentucky sits at 6-3.  The Cats close out the season with @ Vandy (win,) @ Georgia (likely loss,) and hosting Tennessee (obvious win.)  This leaves Kentucky at 8-4 headed into a bowl game with the potential to end the season 9-4.

The reality is, the season will likely end somewhere in between 4-8 and 9-4.  I would consider Low’s best case a reasonable optimistic view of the upcoming season, with the extra loss coming against Tennessee or one of the Mississippi’s.  What are your thoughts headed into the Fall?  Time to rise?

Article written by Will Lentz

27 Comments for Chris Low Says UK Best Case Scenario Is 7-5. Is He Right?

  1. SexnNursinHomes
    9:39 pm August 23, 2011 Permalink

    13-0 and someone murders me in nasty, dirty back street alley. Don’t ask why I was there.

  2. Crackerhillbilly
    9:44 pm August 23, 2011 Permalink

    I think I’m looking forward to Midnight Madness.

  3. Tanks fer Nuttin
    10:15 pm August 23, 2011 Permalink

    All these predictions are predicated on what has been acheived (or not acheived) the previous 5 seasons. It means nothing for this year. Or, maybe it does. I can’t decide.

  4. kentuckyfan
    10:18 pm August 23, 2011 Permalink

    If you think a best case scenario for this uk football team is any more than 7-5 then you really are wearing blue tinted glasses. I can’t see anythng better than 6-6 and frankly, it may be more reasonable to hope they can wing 5 games. 5 may be the best they can do. This is not a talented team and this is not a talented coaching staff.

  5. greatdanish
    10:22 pm August 23, 2011 Permalink

    4) Come back in November if you want to trash talk. Until then, you SUCK!

  6. AirRaid
    10:23 pm August 23, 2011 Permalink

    with Joke at the controls, we will likely go 3-9.

  7. greatdanish
    10:24 pm August 23, 2011 Permalink

    Oh, and 4), great screen name. Wish I could have thought of that one.

  8. Karl Marx
    10:32 pm August 23, 2011 Permalink

    9-4 with a bowl win. Good one.

  9. STEVE!
    10:44 pm August 23, 2011 Permalink

    Why do all of the predictions give us a great chance of beating MSU and a possible chance of beating Georgia when you also say we will lose to Florida no matter what? Mullen seems to have MSU on the rise (no pun intended), and both MSU and GA are forecast to be better than Florida. I think putting MSU in the likely Win column is very optimistic. Here’s hoping we look like a well-coached team and play well in all games – giving us all something to cheer for and some hope for the future – and make the other teams beat us instead of finding ways to beat ourselves.

  10. kentuckygentleman
    10:54 pm August 23, 2011 Permalink

    Anytime you lay out a best/worst scenario, you have to give game predictions. I think worst case is actually 3-9 where they lose all SEC games and win all nonconference except UofL. Best case is actually 8-4 (they win all nonconference, beat Tennessee, Ole Miss, Vandy, and pull off an upset of a top 25 team). #4, I am not saying that is likely to occur, but that is “best case” which may have a very slim chance of occurring, but I don’t see it out of the realm of possibilities.

  11. Hard Hittin' CAT
    10:59 pm August 23, 2011 Permalink

    my prediction is 7-5 with a best case scenario as 8-4 in the regular season with a bowl win so 9-4 is my best case scenario.

    2 & 6 you both suck. you r more than likely loserville fans. p1ss off.

    GO CATS!!

  12. Owen
    11:23 pm August 23, 2011 Permalink

    Best case probably 9-4 with a bowl win. That’s unlikely but it’s best case here, not supposed to be realistic. I don’t think 4-8 is realistic either. I think 6-6, 7-5 is most realistic.

  13. Bill Curry is Back
    11:32 pm August 23, 2011 Permalink

    UK football has always been, and always will be a mediocre program at best!! This 9 win talk some of you are smacking about is just crazy. Kentucky will be lucky to win 7 games and that’s coming from someone (me) who knows it all. I’m a genius, I’m smarter than you when it comes to football and I could be coaching D-1.

  14. john
    12:40 am August 24, 2011 Permalink

    Wow, I realize that Kentucky isn’t a very good team and all but my gosh..7-5 is really the best case scenario?? When I think of best case scenario I think of a season in which everything goes right and for some reason I think that if everything goes right we will end up a little bit better than slightly above .500..I like Chris Low’s articles most of the time because he seems like he gives Kentucky quite a bit of coverage but he really missed it on this one..the best case scenario is we win all of the non-conference games (which is likely) and then we beat vandy,, ga, tenn, miss and miss. st, my God Chris..i realize that beating s. car, ga, and tenn. is unlikely but if we win those games that I just mentioned that’s 9 wins..i guess that just shows how bad the perception of Kentucky football really is when the best possible season that can be imagined is only one where we beat all of the non-conference cupcakes and only beat 3 teams out of a group of ole miss, miss st., ga, tenn., s. car, vandy, fla, lsu…i would say best case is we beat the non-conf. teams and then we beat, ole miss, miss st. ga, tenn, and vandy..i know it’s unlikely, but my God Chris Low, if you’re going to give the best possible scenario for a team at least give them 8 wins!

  15. PaintItBlue
    1:09 am August 24, 2011 Permalink

    When does “best case scenario” translate into, “”im going to be unrealistic” Will? I’m not even sure Chris has is right…. I hope so bad I’m wrong but I don’t see us beating Miss State, as they have a really good team this year and an offensive genius at the helm. I also don’t see us beating TN. I’ve been to a couple of the practices and the scrimmages and Newton looks very far from being sharp (not just timing w the WRs, but the kid cant even throw a spiral). Also, the defense looks confused at times, given Minter’s scheme of letting Ridge Wilson audible the defense’s call based on the offensive’s formation. Again, I hope I’m wrong but I don’t see us being able to spread the field on offense or be good enough defensively to win 3-4 games in the SEC

  16. bluetexan
    1:09 am August 24, 2011 Permalink

    5-7 Best Case – FREE MIKE LEACH!

  17. Lex07
    6:03 am August 24, 2011 Permalink

    Prediction: 5-7 Best-Case: 8-4 Worst Case: 4-8

  18. test
    6:11 am August 24, 2011 Permalink


  19. Lloyd Christmas
    7:36 am August 24, 2011 Permalink

    damn it! we are not beating Miss St!!!! They are good! Quit saying that!

  20. Yesterdays
    8:10 am August 24, 2011 Permalink

    I agree with 9. Casual fans always feel Miss St. is a winnable game. Maybe 7-10 years ago. But not now. They are recruiting 4 star players down there and they just whip us in all facets of the game. Bigger, faster, stronger. While it is a “winnable” game, I wouldnt lump it in with Ole Miss and Jack St. The Ole Miss game and the UL game are the two most important games we play. Win both and you will get to at LEAST six wins, most likely 7

  21. Jack
    9:02 am August 24, 2011 Permalink

    6-7 with a crappy bowl loss

  22. Harry Dunn
    9:28 am August 24, 2011 Permalink

    I’m with you Lloyd…Miss St…. yeah, no chance. 5 wins.

  23. nashvillecatsfan
    9:30 am August 24, 2011 Permalink

    I think that is a pretty fair assessment and I think any people that have the ability to be somewhat objective about the team probably feel the same way. We could possibly be underdogs in every SEC game this year since we’re playing Vandy on the road.

  24. UKfanNKY
    9:34 am August 24, 2011 Permalink

    I can’t wait till the end of this season when we come away with a 9-4 season this year and that includes a bowl WIN and all you haters eat crow and want on the band-wagon! GO CATS RISE!!!

  25. Miles
    9:55 am August 24, 2011 Permalink

    I think everyone one is really under-rating Miss St, because of their history and because its a home game. That team has only gotten better, and we have looked lost against Mullen’s offense the last two years. Unless Minter has drastically changed our defense’s ability to adapt the game plan on the fly, I don’t see us stopping them. 7-5 is a good pick from an outsider like Chris.

  26. tbd4567
    12:59 pm August 24, 2011 Permalink

    I think Minter solves the stupid defense played the last 3 years. Not only were we too far off the ball, our linebackers just would not keep in their holes to prevent slants and other off tackle moves. Most of the teams in SEC are running teams. USC, Ark, LSU, are the only proven throwing teams this year. We stop the run by filling the box and staying in position. We are fast enough to stop most down field passing. Defense should be at least average SEC in ability. We beat Ga and USC with worse last year. Came within 6 of Auburn and could have stopped MSU if we had stayed in the gaps. If the Defense is truly improved we have a chance to be there if Newton hits his down field passers and opens the run.

  27. Jack
    2:55 pm August 24, 2011 Permalink

    “……likely end between 4-8 and 9-4.” That’s a pretty good range, wouldn’t you say? Hell, why not go all the way and make it between 13-0 and 0-12? Leave nothing to chance.