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Kentucky (2-2) vs. LSU (4-0) Preview


Game Facts

UK’s 2010 record was 6-7, including a lost to Pitt in the BBVA Compass Bowl.

LSU’s 2010 record was 11-2, including a victory over Texas A&M in the Cotton Bowl.

UK is 16-38-1 all-time against LSU.

UK lost to Florida last week 48-10 in Lexington.

LSU defeated West Virginia in Morgantown last week 47-21.

Game will be played at Tiger Stadium in Baton Rouge, Louisiana

Game will be televised on the SEC Network

LSU snapshot

LSU enters the game on Saturday at the No 1 ranked team in the country. The last time UK played the Tigers was in 2007 and they were ranked No 1 then as well. The Cats pulled off the upset and LSU went on to win the National Championship. While many UK fans will remember Braxton Kelly’s game winning tackle on Saturday, LSU will be looking for revenge.

The Tigers have already defeated Oregon, Northwestern St, Mississippi State and West Virginia. There is nothing pretty about LSU’s offense. They are simply going to line up and run the football between the tackles. LSU’s offense is completely different from what fans saw last week against Florida. The Tigers offense will be led by Jarrett Lee, who has completed 64% of his passes and thrown 6 touchdown passes. He takes care of the football and has only thrown one interception. Spencer Ware and Michael Ford will give the one-two punch out of the backfield. When Jarrett drops back, he’ll be looking to throw to Rueben Randle who has 3 touchdown receptions on the season.

The Tigers defense is the strength of the team. On the season, they are only allowing 53 rushing yards per game and holding opponents to 14 points per game. They held Oregon’s offense to 95 rushing yards in the first game of the season. One glaring stat is the Tigers have forced 11 turnovers on defense. Given their ground attack on offense, time of possession will be huge in Saturday’s contest.

One thing LSU fans will be watching for on Saturday is the return of Jordan Jefferson, who was the projected starting quarterback entering the season. Jefferson unlike Lee, will be looking to see action on Saturday. Lee is expected to start, but I wouldn’t be shocked if Jefferson’s number is called early in the game. Many Tiger fans feel they will need Jefferson if they are going to win a National Championship.

Kentucky snapshot

The Cats continue to struggle on both sides of the football. This UK team shoots itself in the foot more than any team in recent memory. They don’t give themselves a chance by making too many mistakes. They also miss too many opportunities. Last week against Florida, the Cats struggled to find any rhythm on offense. Josh Clemons fumbled, receivers dropped passes, Morgan Newton struggled and the offensive line had another rough outing.

UK’s scoring offense currently ranks No 107 in the country and No 113 in total offense. Outside of a handful of plays, the Cats have struggled to get anything going this season. After injuring his hamstring against Florida, Josh Clemons is expected to start at running back on Saturday.

The Cats defense ranks No 64 in the nation. Saturday’s game will be physical. As I mentioned above, the Tigers are going to line up and run the ball between the tackles. This is a huge game for UK’s defensive line. Mark Crawford will return for Saturday’s game and will be needed.  Also, Mike Douglas will receive his first career start in place of Collins Ukwu. Both Danny Trevathan and Winston Guy rank in the top 10 in the country in tackles. They will need to play like NFL draft picks if the Cats are going to have a chance on Saturday.

Keys to the game

The Cats enter the game a 30-point underdog and after their performance against Florida, there isn’t much reason for hope. Still, they have to play the game and crazier things have happened. In order for the Cats to knock off the No 1 team in the country on the road, everything must fall into place. The Cats can’t afford any turnovers on offense and find a way to make plays. No one is giving them a chance, so they might as well take a few chances and try to connect for some big plays. On defense, the Cats have to force turnovers and even produce a game changing play or two.

UK’s offense has struggled to keep drives alive and LSU’s offense plans to run the ball on Saturday. If the Cats are unable to move the chains themselves, the Tigers could easily have a 10-minute time of possession advantage at the end of the game. The Tigers are +8 in turnover margin this season compared to UK’s -1 turnover margin. The Cats have only played one ranked team, while the Tigers have already faced three. While Joker wants his team to relax and play ball, that’s a tall task in Baton Rouge.

LSU wins 44-17

As always, you can check out Bleed Blue Kentucky or follow me on Twitter.

Article written by Aaron Cordero

27 Comments for Kentucky (2-2) vs. LSU (4-0) Preview

  1. UKGrad83
    1:08 pm September 30, 2011 Permalink

    Honestly, I don’t see how Kentucky gets 17 points against this team when that’s all it could manage against UL. They may sniff the end zone once or twice but at most get two field goals.

  2. PatPattersonISwalkingthruthatdoor
    1:10 pm September 30, 2011 Permalink

    gawd its crazy to think we were actually ranked #17 once…

  3. Laker Cat 18
    1:10 pm September 30, 2011 Permalink

    What have you seen this far that leads you to predict UK drops 17 points on the LSU defense? Not a chance.

  4. Tigolbitties
    1:11 pm September 30, 2011 Permalink

    “Still, they have to play the game and crazier things have happened.”

    False. Crazier things have not happened. UK beating LSU this year would be at the top of the crazy list.

  5. Realitycheck
    1:17 pm September 30, 2011 Permalink

    LSU: 56, 380 yards rushing
    UK: 13, -yards rushing till garbage time in the 4th.

  6. Don
    1:20 pm September 30, 2011 Permalink

    WVA only managed 21 vs. LSU, and their offense is light years ahead of ours. Unfortunately, that Defense for LSU is going to obliterate our Offense, and we will not score.

    LSU- 56
    UK – 0

    UK forced into 3 turnovers; Net yards rushing – 21; Net yards passing – 67

  7. Powerlifter165
    1:23 pm September 30, 2011 Permalink

    I see this as very much a repeat of the FL game.

    1st UK 0 LSU 21 (LSU defense scores at least one of these TD’s)
    Half UK 0 LSU 35
    3rd UK 3 LSU 49
    Final UK 3 LSU 56

    No way UK scores 17 and after scoring 47 against WV last week I just don’t see how LSU doesn’t score atleast 50 this game, unless they just call off the dogs like FL did in the 4th.

  8. BLUE 4 LIFE
    1:30 pm September 30, 2011 Permalink

    You really think we’ll score against LSU? I’ll say 63-0 tigers.

  9. Powerlifter165
    1:34 pm September 30, 2011 Permalink

    #8 I was suprised that they scored against FL. I’m just going to guess that with nothing to lose in this game that they at least try and throw down field and connect on at least one to get them in field goal range, but I wouldn’t be shocked if they didn’t score at all.

  10. High Hand
    1:41 pm September 30, 2011 Permalink

    Okay last year we lost to the #9 Florida Gators by 34 points and we lost to #8 Auburn by three. If we only lose to #1 LSU by 2 or 3 touchdowns… Does that satisfy all the Joker haters?

  11. Realistic
    1:41 pm September 30, 2011 Permalink

    LSU 60-0…and that’s me taking into consideration that the LSU second and third teams will play the majority of the second half. It’s gonna be ugly folks! This is the worst Offensive team I’ve seen at Kentucky in a LONG TIME (possibly ever)…I’m 29 and have seen a lot of bad UK Football teams too.

  12. catcrawler
    1:47 pm September 30, 2011 Permalink

    UK should go deep the first three plays of the game.. if they have to punt on a three and out, so be it..

  13. Jrob
    1:59 pm September 30, 2011 Permalink

    #11 – I agree that this is one of the worst offensive teams I’ve witnessed in my lifetime as a UK season ticket holder. However, I don’t think we’re quite as bad as the Elliot Uzelac offense during the Curry days.

  14. The Anti-Schwump
    2:05 pm September 30, 2011 Permalink

    5- Only argument I have with that is that garbage time might start much earlier than the 4th! haha

  15. NashBlue
    2:07 pm September 30, 2011 Permalink

    Can we borrow LSU’s back up QB and maybe a receiver or two?

  16. Fade Joker
    2:16 pm September 30, 2011 Permalink

    Is this score prediction a way to make someone feel better about taking UK +30?

  17. RidgeRunner
    2:20 pm September 30, 2011 Permalink

    63-3 LSU

    2…Yes, its like losing a lost love you barely can remember and finding yourself alone now on a deserted island.

    We have had bad teams before but Joker’s lack of coaching ability has us wandering into area’s that is beyond a bad team.

  18. RidgeRunner
    2:25 pm September 30, 2011 Permalink

    Aaron (while I think of it).. You are one of the best football writers who follow UK and just wanted to say thx for your insight here on KSR.

    Just wish Joker…..oh well….you know without me or someone bashing him yet again.

  19. Sons of Guns
    2:27 pm September 30, 2011 Permalink

    UK can’t go deep the first 3 plays because the offensive line will be getting tea bagged. It will not help to borrow players because Joker will try to run it up the gut on 1st down, surprise them with a draw on second down, take a sack on 3rd down, and get the punt blocked on 4th down.

  20. Justin G.
    3:14 pm September 30, 2011 Permalink

    My favorite thing about this team, is that there is not 1 good thing that they do well! How is that even possible?!!!!!! I mean, if UK, and Joker, have been getting better players then the program has ever had, then why are they not able to even marginally do their job (catch, block, tackle,etc.). The ANSWER is : Joker’s coaching ability! Our team has two coordinators who have been fired for being bad at that job, and a coach that has never had a coaching job before (it seems he does not know how to develop players).

    Heck, even T. Martin (receivers coach), whom I adore as a recruiter, had a funny thing to say. When asked why his receivers were not catching the ball (post Florida beat-down), he responded by saying, “I don’t know, I never played the position.” WOW!!!!

  21. Bill Curry
    3:17 pm September 30, 2011 Permalink

    17 points??? What the eff are you smoking?

  22. BravoBigBlue
    3:17 pm September 30, 2011 Permalink

    66 – 6. Jokerball gets 2 FG’s, one in each half. So the Cats have that going for them.

  23. BravoBigBlue
    3:21 pm September 30, 2011 Permalink

    Tee Martin should be elevated to offensive coordinator immediately. Move Sanders back to QB coach and Joker to receivers coach. The team doesn’t need a head coach. Who needs a head coach? You could have Bill Curry phone it in.

  24. Millertime
    3:37 pm September 30, 2011 Permalink

    20. We punt well.

  25. 3 fan
    4:00 pm September 30, 2011 Permalink

    Gotta give Aaron credit, he is trying to put roses on a shit sandwich. LSU wins 56-3

  26. Lets Be Frank Sinatra...
    4:05 pm September 30, 2011 Permalink

    LSU has the most dominant Defense in the country. Tomorrow would have to be a chilly day in hell for us to put up 17 points. LSU 41 UK 6

  27. Scott K
    8:00 pm September 30, 2011 Permalink

    Bring on Basketball season, unless something drastic happens we might win 2 more games