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Kentucky vs. Louisville Recap

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The Cats and Cards met in Lexington yesterday for the 24th Battle of the Governor’s Cup. In what was an ugly game on both sides, the Cats lost to the Cards 24-17. As I have been writing for weeks, the Cats needed to play a sound football game in order win. At one time, I know I tweeted “The Cats beat UL as long as they don’t fumble the game away.” Well, unfortunately that’s what happened.

The Cats came out a little flat, but Louisville bailed the Cats out on the opening series with a penalty to keep the drive alive. The Cats drove the ball inside Louisville’s 5-yard line and had to settle for a Craig McIntosh field goal. Joker Phillips called this a game of “missed opportunities.” I’ve been saying for a while this team can’t afford to miss opportunities and leave points on the field. This came back to haunt the Cats late in the game.

On Louisville’s first offensive series, the Cats defense forces a three-and-out. Commonwealth stadium is starting to get amped up. On UK’s next offensive series, they show life again. However, Morgan Newton connects with La’Rod King on 3rd down and King fumbles. In my opinion, this is when the game really changed. Not to pour salt on a wound, but this reminded me of the Tennessee game last year when UK should have went up 14-0 and fumbled at the goal line.

Then the game started to get ugly. After punting back and forth to each other, Louisville’s Will Stein connected with Andrell Smith for a touchdown reception. This is where I give the Cards credit, they took shots at the endzone and played aggressive. Then later in the half, after Will Stein was knocked out of the game, Teddy Bridgewater connected with Devante Parker for 25-yard touchdown pass.

After Parker’s touchdown, UK fans started to really get nervous, but not Morgan Newton. He led his team down the field and found La’Rod King in the corner of the endzone for touchdown to cut the Cards lead before halftime. Many felt this could be the turning point of the game for the Cats.

Some coaches say the last five minutes of the first half and the first five minutes of the second half are crucial to the outcome of the game. In this case, it was the latter. Louisville received the ball to start the second half and pretty much ran the ball down UK’s throat until Martavius Neloms but a big hit on Jeremy Wright and forced a fumble. The play was reviewed and determined that Wright’s knee was down. What was initially thought to be a game changer for UK was wiped away. Still, UK’s defense stood tall and held Louisville to a field goal. This was actually a big stop by UK’s defense.

The next offensive series produced nothing for UK. The Cats tried to run Morgan Newton and Josh Clemons and had no success. Louisville struggled on offense too, but managed to win the field position game by downing a punt inside UK’s one-yard line. UK’s offense struggled again. Morgan Newton threw a prayer to E.J. Fields to keep the drive going when the Cats were backed up and got lucky. Still, the Cats couldn’t get anything going after that and were forced to punt.

Louisville missed an opportunity too. Bridgewater threw into the endzone and the receiver dropped the ball. That play should have resulted in a touchdown for Louisville. Still, Bridgewater found Josh Bellamy in the endzone at the start of the 4 QTR to put the Cards up 24-10. Down two scores, UK found a way to drive down the field for a score. After a few throws to Nick Melillo, Morgan Newton hooked up with E.J. Fields for a touchdown pass. On Louisville’s next offensive series, the Cats defense stood tall again and forced the Cards to punt. The Cats marched down the field with an opportunity to tie the game and missed another opportunity. Morgan Newton connected with Demarco Robinson on 3rd down, but Louisville knocked the ball loose and the Cats recovered. Instead of UK having a first down with momentum, the fumble made it fourth down and the rest is history. Remember leaving 4 points on the field during the opening drive? Would you have felt better if Craig McIntosh was running out on 4th down to tie the game instead of Newton having to throw for a first down?

In looking for a few positives from the game, Morgan Newton took another step forward, in my opinion, based on his last two performances. Newton had 27 pass completions. Also, E.J. Fields emerged as a reliable receiver and recorded his first career touchdown. Nick Melillo hauled in a three receptions. Danny Trevathan recorded his 12th consecutive game with double-digit tackles.

I don’t care what anyone says, it was an ugly game. Neither team played great, but the Cards outplayed the Cats in many ways. UK’s offensive line continues to struggle, which impacts both the rushing and passing game. The Cats gave up 6 sacks and only managed 35 rushing yards. That is not acceptable and will be a major problem with the SEC schedule looming. Now is not the time to feel sorry for the Cats. The team needs to get back to work because Florida comes to town next week.

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Article written by Aaron Cordero

24 Comments for Kentucky vs. Louisville Recap



  1. barn
    4:15 pm September 18, 2011 Permalink

    more basketball news please



  2. Larry Terry
    4:28 pm September 18, 2011 Permalink

    We’re gonna die.



  3. Jimmy Buffett
    4:29 pm September 18, 2011 Permalink

    The positive for the game? It’s one game closer to the end of the season.



  4. Maxwell
    4:33 pm September 18, 2011 Permalink

    I feel like everything Rich Brooks has done has been erased in one year. Such a shame.



  5. Beat Tenessee. Now!
    4:33 pm September 18, 2011 Permalink


  6. UK FAN
    4:33 pm September 18, 2011 Permalink

    Bottom line UK got beat by a terrible team. For KSP to do a UL hate day after the games against WKU and CMU was insane. You definitely were setting yourself up for some major crow eating.



  7. SEC Sports
    4:37 pm September 18, 2011 Permalink

    Aaron- yourself, Messenger, RV, and Mobilcat are coming off as fools as you continue to “spin” the story of UK Football on the “rise”. If you want people to take you seriously, you need to distance yourself from those guys. People are sick of the blue blinders.



  8. Jimmy Buffett
    4:38 pm September 18, 2011 Permalink

    The Gators are probably thinking:

    ‘UK game. It’s easier than practice and we get to wear our nice uniforms.’

    The Gators and the rest of the SEC as well.



  9. bonkrshr
    4:40 pm September 18, 2011 Permalink

    1. CAL took a dump today… a really spectacular one…
    2. It’s a game
    3. Margarita’s are for Louisville fans
    4. Seek a psychiatrist immediately
    5. Amen
    6. KSP loves UL and UK players and will enforce the law for both… crow is good with a nice marinara…

    Some of us love football, Thanks for the info Aaron and Messenger…



  10. Brian
    4:41 pm September 18, 2011 Permalink

    So looks like it’s WVU to the SEC….



  11. Mike Leach
    4:45 pm September 18, 2011 Permalink

    Ask me and I will come.



  12. I Tweet Bombs
    4:51 pm September 18, 2011 Permalink

    Not a fan of writers who start off articles with “As I have been writing for weeks…” (aka told you so)



  13. TheVig
    4:55 pm September 18, 2011 Permalink

    Hey Adam… reading your bold statements I’m glad to see you don’t take any credit for yourself.

    (in your mind place the emoticon for puking on someone else here)



  14. BigBlueLush
    5:03 pm September 18, 2011 Permalink

    I LOVE Joker, but if we want to compete in the SEC we better go find a coach and spend some money. All that money for the new Rupp Areana, forget about it and pump into football. The conference shakeup has started and we don’t want to continue to be the SEC bottomfeeder with new schools coming in. WE SUCK, WE NEED TO GET BETTER.



  15. UKBBALL4LIFE
    5:06 pm September 18, 2011 Permalink

    So I hear Bill Parcells has been seen looking at some horse farms around Lexington! 😉



  16. UKBBALL4LIFE
    5:11 pm September 18, 2011 Permalink

    14. All that money we’ve pumped into the football team, could be used to get a new basketball arena. I say, forget football, and lets be good at what we are good at!



  17. nashvillecatsfan
    5:12 pm September 18, 2011 Permalink

    So, you’ve been saying that “the Cats needed to play a sound football game in order win.” Great insight.



  18. lousyvilleCat
    5:28 pm September 18, 2011 Permalink

    10, i can only hope so. WVU is my “other team”. “Now is not the time to feel sorry for the Cats.” ????? dude i felt sorry for everyone watching that crap fest. not one time did i feel sorry for the cats.



  19. mike
    5:36 pm September 18, 2011 Permalink

    Joker has got to go now since he just lost the FAN BASE….not sure he ever had the players drinking his kool aid either but too much damage done and we don’t have the talent, coaching, or apparently will to WIN to turn this around.



  20. JBR
    8:45 pm September 18, 2011 Permalink

    Exactly #7…maybe Aaron is really Barnhart or something. Our only “dedicated” football site is as clueless as Joker. I started saying this stuff about Joker last year over there, and the red flags that I saw with the emotion, game preparation, attitude, discipline, etc…and was run off of the sight for being too negative and standing up to the autistic bully that is Messenger (Frank). The blue blinders are really showing through now, and this team is horrible for one reason…Joker cannot coach. I have never seen a more pathetic display of football and waste of talent that this team has. Aaron and crew consistently make excuses, and shoot everyone else down who are REALISTS…now, I am a fan that supported Brooks through the bad times (because I saw him doing those intangibles that lead to success), and I supported Hartline, so I am not just a hater. But it has been evident from day 1 that Joker has gotten in WAY above his head. The whiners over at BBK can bitch and moan all they want, but this administration is going to lose A LOT of money next year from people like me not renewing their season tickets. We deserve better than this crap that we are seeing on the field. Look at Boise ST…and I am not starting a “could they win the SEC argument”…but they are a bunch of 2 star white boys that can flat out play football because they are coached well and have heart, discipline and desire. They have a coach that knows how to prepare for a game. We just reclaimed our basement spot in the SEC…congrats Vandy for getting a good coach. Aaron, sorry buddy, you are more reasonable than your pompous Messenger, but you may go the way of Joker very soon with this crap you guys write about this team.



  21. Todd
    9:38 pm September 18, 2011 Permalink

    You could have used a UL-UK photo instead of UT!



  22. Common Sense
    1:31 am September 19, 2011 Permalink

    If you think the “#louisvillehateday” had any outcome on this game, kill yourself, KSR has done that the past 4 years and it obviously didnt effect those games…



  23. cardfan1
    11:05 am September 19, 2011 Permalink

    Dont feel bad big blue bb season is almost hear.Another year of one and dones.Just think you didnt want to play us the first game of the season,it backfired in your arse.Must feel horrible being a football fan right now because it dont get any easier.And if you live in Louisville that makes for along ride home when you loose.



  24. Rich Hadrych
    8:33 pm September 20, 2011 Permalink

    Coaches need to speed up the offense. They’re making average defenses look great. Defense has time to rest and are going balls to the walls on every play!!