Even while it is the night of the Alumni Game it is hard to not have a mix of emotions about next week’s season opener against Southern Miss. For me, my emotions are a mix of worried and excited. Worried, because a loss to open the season would be terrible for this football team. Even if season ticket numbers are down, it is hard to deny that the excitement for a UK Football season is at a high for the Mark Stoops era. For the first time, a bowl game is expected from Stoops and company and a loss to Southern Miss would be a huge blow to this team’s morale. Morale is the big worry for me this year for the Cats. Their morale weakness especially showed in Week Three last season against New Mexico State. Following a game and a half of embarrassing performances, the Cats started off extremely slow. This was obviously not based on a New Mexico State team that finished 3-9 last season being better than the Cats. Instead, it was a team that was trying to find its’ mojo and luckily for the Cats they found it after awhile.
So what does all of this mean? Well, the importance of starting off the season with a win has never been more critical. A loss would put that Cats at 1-1 heading into a MASSIVE game in Columbia. It is also hard not to mention that Week Two is against EKU. While Kentucky will be doing everything in its’ power to avoid a repeat of their last matchup, the Cats will definitely have to be ready for the Colonels.
Overall, I am confident that the Cats can get it done in Week One. My only request is to lay on the gas. One of the best things that could happen to Mark Stoops’ team is a 30+ point win. In order to gain respect in the SEC you have to beat non-Power 5 teams by a large margin.
Feel free to let me know how wrong I am on Twitter @GormleyKSR. My only request is you hit the “follow” button before. After that, it is fair game.