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Kentucky beats Central Michigan 27-13


It’s hard to believe, but this team is 2-0. They haven’t been pretty by any means, but the wins over Western Kentucky and Central Michigan have been just that: WINS. I don’t know where you can place the blame on our slow, slow starts. I don’t want to put it on the coaches, but there’s no reason that this team should always come out of the gates looking like a deer in the headlights. We have a huge talent advantage over both the Hilltoppers and the Chippewas and there’s no reason we shouldn’t do what we’ve done in the second half, throughout the entire game. That’s an argument for another day, though. For now, let’s talk about this win…

– The wide receivers have been terrible, especially Matt Roark who, I truly believe, seems to lack the ability to catch at all, but today Morgan Newton proved that part of the blame has to fall on him. For every Roark touchdown drop, Newton had a gross overthrow of a wide open La’Rod King in the end zone. Newton took some sacks that he shouldn’t have taken and forced passes when he should have thrown the ball away. However, like the WKU game, Newton seemed to get into a rhythm in the second half when he started finding success with the run and once he hit a wide open La’Rod to tie the game up at 13 with four minutes left in the third quarter. It’s key that Morgan maintain that high confidence through the first and second half, otherwise Max Smith may get a shot at quarterbacking.

– Another disheartening development in the passing game was Newton’s single minded dependence on King. He stared King down on most passing patterns and tried to force the ball when he shouldn’t have. Hopefully, Newton can develop a higher level of trust with his 0ther receivers, because King can’t be the only option all year.

– On the positive side of things offensively, both Raymond Sanders, Josh Clemons and Morgan Newton ran the ball effectively in the second half. It was triggered by Clemons’ 87 yard touchdown run, but all three runners became more effective as the game progressed. Sanders and Newton finished with 62 yards on eight carries and 43 yards on 13 carries, respectively. Clemons racked up 126 yards on 14 carries with one touchdown. His 100+ yard game was the first for a freshman since Chad Scott in 2000 and his 87 yard run was the fourth longest in UK history and the longest by a freshman.

– Two offensive line starters, Billy Joe Murphy and Matt Smith, we sidelined with injuries, but the offensive line held up pretty well. The freshman Darrian Miller from Bryan Station got the start at right tackle. He’s got great size and this experience will be valuable as he works to become an SEC-caliber lineman.

– Defensively, we couldn’t stop a third and long to save our lives. Central Michigan racked up 15 first downs in the first half alone. Luckily, we were able to buckle down and restrict their ridiculously potent assault and limit them to only six first downs in the second half.

– Danny Trevathan and Randall Burden interceptions toward the end of the first and second half, respectively were great for restricting the tide of Chippewa momentum. We couldn’t convert offensively after the Trevathan play, but it provided the team enough spark to keep competing. Big players make big plays.

In addition to that pick, Trevathan finished with 13 tackles, four for loss and a pass break up. Winston Guy also had 13 tackles despite being slightly hindered by his hamstring toward the end of the game.

– The Central Michigan passing attack saw quarterback, Ryan Radcliff, rack up 160 yards in the first half, mainly against Anthony Mosley. Mosley has a lot of work to do before the start of the SEC slate, because if he plays like that, he’s going to be burnt all season long.

– Collins Ukwu played very well today and seemed to live in the Central Michigan backfield. UK needs that consistent pressure up front to compete against SEC teams. Ukwu will be counted on to provide it.

– Once again, the kicking portion of our special teams was fantastic. McIntosh hit a 41 and 45 yard field goal. He did miss a 29 yarder, but I think that was more fluke than anything. He won’t miss many of those. Tydlacka continued to make his push for team MVP with three great punts averaging about 50 yards per kick. Joe Mansour tallied three touch backs on six kick offs and even sent one of them out of the end zone.

– The return portion of our special teams wasn’t as impressive. A DeMarco Robinson dropped kick off that ended up going for no return and a Raymond Sanders return fumble to start the second half could have been killer. This is a huge area that we miss Randall Cobb and Derrick Locke. We just don’t have anyone who can make that big impact in the return game. I’m all for lining Danny up back there. The guy makes plays.

– It was a painfully slow and emotionally draining start, but a win is a win. This team better get their heads on straight for Louisville next week. I can guarantee that there will be a few more people on hand for that one.

Go Cats

Article written by Matthew Hays

56 Comments for Kentucky beats Central Michigan 27-13

  1. Buckets
    5:25 pm September 10, 2011 Permalink

    Clemons is the man!!! But I gotta say, this team is b-o-r-i-n-g to watch. Off tackle, off tackle, 5-yard out, off tackle…

  2. MG
    5:26 pm September 10, 2011 Permalink

    Wrong. Arliss Beach had 108 yards against UTEP his freshman year.

  3. Section 133
    5:34 pm September 10, 2011 Permalink

    Just back from the game. Thought I would comment on how UK has “bettered the fan experience.”

    New scoreboards=more opportunity to advertise. Ribbon boards=more opportunity to advertise. Useless. They gave other scores TWICE during the game.

    Replays. NEVER on anything resembling a controversial call, and when you do get them, they have to be “brought to you” by an advertisement.

    Sound system is better, but if they ever play the Black Eyed Peas again, I’m not renewing.

    Mercifully, there were no beach balls and no one tried to get the wave going. Neat to see Cobb and neat to see Boogie hanging out in front of our section for most of the second half. He wanted all of us to “call him.”

  4. johnson
    5:35 pm September 10, 2011 Permalink

    Horrible 1st half against an inferior opponent. I guess the lockout…no wait, they have had alot of pratice.

  5. john4uk
    5:41 pm September 10, 2011 Permalink

    No sacks by the defense,some very poor tackeling,and being slow off the ball can spell disaster defensively in SEC play.Also dissapointed in the physical strength of the team.Lineman on both sides of the ball are getting manhandled,so what is Rocks answer?
    Offensively,it would be great to see backs run with authority and punish would be tacklers.As far as the qb position,Moss must have been really bad to have been beaten out by Newton,and lord knows what Smith can do.Anyway,the Cats won,and in years past,todays win would have been a loss,so we fans should be happy and pray that this team improves big time by the time they enter SEC play.

  6. Claude Holiday III
    5:42 pm September 10, 2011 Permalink

    Joker must go or else the stadium will be even more bare than it was today. The fans are sick of this crap.

  7. WildcatsDominate
    5:45 pm September 10, 2011 Permalink

    2) Someone got a beach ball going over near 121 but it didn’t last long thanks to a fan grabbing it and taking the air out.

  8. Boneill
    5:47 pm September 10, 2011 Permalink

    I really don’t think Newton looked that bad.. I was much more impressed seeing him in person. Give him time and he’ll be fine. I’m not saying he’s tim couch but he is a suitable quarterback with some athletic ability

  9. sir
    5:49 pm September 10, 2011 Permalink

    Does anyone know where I can catch a replay of the game. I was at work.

  10. goodlord
    5:52 pm September 10, 2011 Permalink

    I see no reason to continue watching this pitiful team. A waste of time.

  11. Goose
    5:55 pm September 10, 2011 Permalink

    I thought they showed a lot of progress. Newton made some mistakes but got much better as the day went on – catch the ball and the game looks much different. Defense started terribly but played well the last three quarters. We lost every skill player on this team last year. People who expect instant success are just ridiculous. We weren’t that good last year with all those players! The early booing of the team was embarrassing. Get behind this team instead of all the sniping!

  12. mike
    5:57 pm September 10, 2011 Permalink

    It is a shame that as a junior, Newton, still isn’t able to look off receivers. He just doesn’t seem to have that confidence in the pocket and probably should be utilized more out of the pocket to also take advantage of his running ability. Our offensive play calling is still too VANILLA and predictable and am not sure Sanders should be retained as OC.

  13. wakecat
    5:57 pm September 10, 2011 Permalink

    3. I agree about the video boards. They are nice, but too bad UK decided to use only 2/3 of them, leaving sponsor logos up on the other 1/3. It was like watching “picture in picture” TV. When they did show an instant replay, they expanded to use the whole board, so you could see what. Is possible.

    Also, they didn’t play Mike Martin’s (guy who made the video to amp up the experience at the stadium) song today. So no dancing guy.

  14. football fan
    6:14 pm September 10, 2011 Permalink

    The farther this team gets away from Rich Brooks being at the control the worse things get. We need to get rid of Joker before to much damage is done.

  15. Goose
    6:15 pm September 10, 2011 Permalink

    Unlike the first game, Newton looked good in the pocket – not sure what you were watching. Only struggled when the RB blew blocking assignments. Other than the overthrow in the end zone he threw the ball pretty damn well. Much better than he did against WKU. He still has a ways to go, but the world isn’t coming to an end the way I thought it might after last week.

  16. Section 133
    6:20 pm September 10, 2011 Permalink

    7. Good work by someone. A statue may be in order.

  17. ColoradoCat
    6:29 pm September 10, 2011 Permalink

    Matt Roark has worse hands than a statue.

  18. mike hartline
    6:32 pm September 10, 2011 Permalink

    see…i didn’t do so bad

  19. blitzedanddazed
    6:32 pm September 10, 2011 Permalink

    I think Joker needs to have the team practice on the field at Commonwealth this week. I think it would help Newton
    with his passing. Newton seems to have a problem with his depth perception on a lot of his throws. I would also
    cover the end zone seats with green fabric to help with his ability to pick out his receivers.

  20. kaboom!
    6:33 pm September 10, 2011 Permalink

    no sacks. secondary beat all day. iffy blocking by WRs & RBs. multiple dropped passes. better o-line blocking considering injuries but below SEC average at best. decent playcalling on offense but should’ve seen more bootlegs, more newton scrambles, more throws/plays across the middle, less eying 1 receiver down the field, less sacks.
    the team improved somewhat but there is still PLENTY to work on.

  21. For the love of all that is pure and wholesome in the world, just catch a football.
    6:34 pm September 10, 2011 Permalink

    At least we aren’t UL…

  22. mike hartline
    6:37 pm September 10, 2011 Permalink

    want me back?

  23. Just saying
    6:38 pm September 10, 2011 Permalink

    Im not sure what game most watched when we played WKU, but our defense is WEAK. We cant stop the run!! WKU, a OVC team, ran for 141 yards against us, while we put a 181 TOTAL yards. Then today CENTRAL Michigan threw the ball all over us, for the tune of 295 yards. So far we have been out gained in total yards by both Western Kentucky and Central Michigan.

    Any body look at the stands today?? What was the attendance of opening day with bright blue skies?? 45K?? Barnhart announced today ticket sales are DOWN 6-7% and UK “needs to put an entertaining product on the field”. Hmmmm, nothing puts a coach on the hot seat more than an empty stadium.

    Was that game entertaining to you? All I could see was Florida, LSU and South Carolina coming up after the UL game. If UK beats UL, and thats a big IF, were in for an embarrassing stretch that could simply put the fan base at home, and Joker on the street. Like it or not, its true

    Im glad we chose “RISE” as our slogan, because when youre literally at the bottom, there’s no where else to go

  24. blitzedanddazed
    6:40 pm September 10, 2011 Permalink

    #21—Win or Lose at least we are not U of L.

  25. UK fans
    6:44 pm September 10, 2011 Permalink

    were not coming to anymore games until Joker leaves. You thought we didnt go to Nashville because it was a Thursday? What the excuse of why CWS was half empty.

    Here’s hoping Georgis gets their butts handed to them, so UK can go after Mark Richt when he’s fired from Georgia.

  26. mocha
    6:44 pm September 10, 2011 Permalink

    Last game we will win for a while, hope they enjoyed it.

  27. well well
    6:48 pm September 10, 2011 Permalink

    Joker said “UK basketball doesnt put 70,000 fans in Rupp”

    Well UK football cant put 70,000 in Commonwealth either, I’d bet that if UK basketball had opening day at Commonwealth the same or more would be there to watch it

    Its sad to say, but we’re not just bad, we’re really, really bad

  28. 2020
    6:52 pm September 10, 2011 Permalink

    I have to think that the UK coaching staff has held back a few offensive moves as a surprise for both UL and Florida.

  29. Tennessee game
    6:53 pm September 10, 2011 Permalink

    anybody watching me?

    We can go ahead and make 27 in a row

  30. FBI
    6:54 pm September 10, 2011 Permalink

    Missing: tight ends.
    Last seen: in the picture above.

  31. DoubtingThomas
    6:54 pm September 10, 2011 Permalink

    The lone bright spots, Clemons and Tydlacka…if they sleepwalk in the 1st half against a “real” football team like they did today. They’ll get blown out BIG by halftime.

  32. Mr Saturdaypants
    7:06 pm September 10, 2011 Permalink

    The two halves could hardly have been more different. Central Michigan won the first half 13-6. Kentucky won the second 21-0. In the final thirty minutes UK’s defense generally looked good and its offense so-so. If the team can put that combination together for a full game, it can win a few games this year. If it plays as it did in the first half, it could get shut out the rest of the way. I would bet on 5 wins, with a high end of 7 and a low end of 3.

  33. Glass house
    7:08 pm September 10, 2011 Permalink

    I agree the new stadium experience was terrible. They never showed meaningful replay. I saw more drakes, coke and Kroger Ads then football on the screens. I understand they have to pay the bills but seriously it was too much. There was no need for a bigger screen if they were just going to show it in the same size as last year anyways. And I agree/disagree with the person that said the sound was better. It was for music but the intro video sound was horrendous. I also noticed alot of glitches in all of the boards but hopefully that can be chalked up to first time mistakes and bugs. But hey we won on the scoreboard. What is everyones opinion of the ring of honor flags??

  34. Dude
    7:14 pm September 10, 2011 Permalink

    We won, we looked better. Enjoy it.

  35. Ben
    7:17 pm September 10, 2011 Permalink

    Let’s see! We have receivers that can’t catch, corners that can defend, and a quarterback that is very inaccurate! Our defense is soft and ineffective! A coaching staff that just does not understand! This team is no fun to watch and it is very sad that KY cannot put a better product on the field than this. I am most pissed off by Joker talking about playing for championships and then giving us this crap of a team. Joker just speak truthfully or shut up! At least Brooks told it like it was.

  36. SexnNursinHomes
    7:23 pm September 10, 2011 Permalink


  37. wildcat_marine
    7:33 pm September 10, 2011 Permalink

    Wildcats won. Respectively

  38. Mr Saturdaypants
    7:33 pm September 10, 2011 Permalink

    At a closer look, the problems were almost all first quarter. Counting drives in the quarter in which they began, yardage by quarter breaks down like this:

    CMU UK
    1st 228 42
    2nd 14 81
    3rd 82 132
    4th 58 105

    Kentucky got destroyed in the opening period. After that the cats outgained Central Michigan 318-154. Central Michigan’s possessions after 1st quarter:

    Loss on downs
    Game over

    They just can’t start like that.

  39. wildcat_marine
    7:42 pm September 10, 2011 Permalink

    Cats win. Respectively

  40. MikeinLexington
    7:49 pm September 10, 2011 Permalink

    The Rod King is the only one that can catch, thats why he trust him. Newton looked except 2 passes, but the receivers couldve made him look great. Clemons is a BEAST!!!

  41. MikeinLexington
    7:49 pm September 10, 2011 Permalink

    The Rod King is the only one that can catch, thats why he trust him. Newton looked good except 2 passes, but the receivers couldve made him look great. Clemons is a BEAST!!!

  42. mike
    8:01 pm September 10, 2011 Permalink

    We also have not been able to get any pressure on the opposing quarterbacks in either game. That will hurt in SEC play.

  43. BigBrother
    8:04 pm September 10, 2011 Permalink

    Sorry folks, I hate no program more than I do U of Smell but after watching both UL and UK for two games, UL has way more talent and speed at the skill positions. Not to mention Stein looks more polished at QB. We can make fun of UL all we want for losing last night but I can assure you, that FL Inter team would have walked all over us. Hate to say it, but UL wins next week and this UK team will not win a single SEC game. They are terrible with a capital T. The truth hurts, but Joker is a Joke and he is a sinking ship that is taking on water fast.

    And for the same group of feel sorry for our coach fans, and a win is a win fans, and the same group that supported that Drunk Billy Clyde, take your give Joker some time somewhere else because if you cant see the writing on the wall, and the lack of people in the stands, and the lousy product on the field then you are seriously clueless. Two terrible non conference teams have played us close and that is TERRIBLE.

    Joker, I welcome you as a recruiter, I think, but ya gotta go as a head coach.

  44. barn
    8:06 pm September 10, 2011 Permalink

    tinasee already marking a ‘w’ on 11/26/11.

  45. Holden McGroin
    8:32 pm September 10, 2011 Permalink

    quit yer bitchin. we won, and we looked better than last week. bitches.
    Did any of you watch the UL game? They suck. UK will beat the dirty cards next week. I just hate it i can’t get to the game. bitches.

  46. Robukpt
    8:56 pm September 10, 2011 Permalink

    I think roark’s special teams tackle shows he can catch things over four feet long. So is Morgan newtons “big arm” big enough to throw Emanuel Lewis to the end zone?

  47. Holden McGroin
    9:02 pm September 10, 2011 Permalink

    38. i agree

  48. Robukpt
    9:10 pm September 10, 2011 Permalink

    Roark showed on special teams he can catch something over 4 ft long. So is newtons “big arm” big enough to throw Gary Coleman to the end zone? Wait, what?

  49. mashburnfan1
    9:16 pm September 10, 2011 Permalink

    FWIW Navy is blasting western ky 33-7 in 3rd qtr at wku. We are just not that good, in my opinion based on the 2 games I have seen. Will root for our guys still but not having high expectations may help my frustrations.

  50. Jim Dinkle
    9:32 pm September 10, 2011 Permalink

    Susan Lax is hot!

  51. SeoulCat
    12:22 am September 11, 2011 Permalink

    This program will not get any better under Joker’s watch. It just won’t. Some things are easy to forecast, and 5-7/4-8 seasons over the next few years (with the occasional “good year” of 6-6) under Joker is one of those things.

  52. Robshairgel
    2:05 am September 11, 2011 Permalink

    This is supposed to be a pro UK site, but yet you blast a current player in Roark! You wouldn’t talk about a basketball player like this so what makes it easier to attack a football player? You guys are right when you say in the most ridiculous manner possible, the only thing missing is a cartoon sketch clowns! Way to support all UK athletes that pay basketball only.Sometimes, no yet all the time your football coverage is a joke! Congrats on being on par with the Leo jack assess!

  53. Holden McGroin
    7:19 am September 11, 2011 Permalink

    we won

  54. gcat4496
    9:38 am September 11, 2011 Permalink

    The one thing I have noticed about Joker’s teams is that they seem to always start sluggish. Why can’t they get it going earlier. Same thing as last year, a bad first half followed by a better 2nd. But we won and 2-0 is better than 0-2. Josh Clemons is going to be special. The D & Special teams are solid. But, in order for this team to have success this year, they had better step it up on offense.

  55. jbgibs2
    11:33 am September 11, 2011 Permalink

    UL looks better than us? Are you kidding? What games have you been watching? They never had a chance at home against FIU but they’ll just waltz into Commonwealth and beat us. That’s priceless. We haven’t looked great by any stretch but if our D plays like it did the last 3 quarters, the dirty birds will be lucky to score 10 points. Also, anyone who says they will quit going to games and stop supporting our team when we’re UNDEFEATED is retarded.

  56. Well Well Well
    2:01 pm September 11, 2011 Permalink

    #27 – UK has LOTS of empty seats at Rupp for games. You don’t know what you’re talking about.