Enough about you, let’s talk about me. If you’ll notice, I’m not Tyler Thompson. I’m Tyler Montell, the less attractive Tyler. Don’t make that mistake again. This is my first post here on KSR and I’m excited to be on board. You can follow me on Twitter @MontellKSR, so long as you behave yourself.
As for my emotions today, I’m torn. On one hand, we still got Bin Laden, which is nice. On the other hand, Saturday night was miserable. A boozie, portly and mustachioed Cards fan, sitting behind my friends and I, stopped us on the way out of Commonwealth and said, “You just got beat by little old Louisville. Aww that must hurt you so bad. Deep down, this has to hurt.” Truthfully, that was a paraphrase because he was sweating profusely and it was more of a verbal drunk hashtag, but I got the jest. And he’s right too: That loss hurt.
It hurts you too, doesn’t it? Of course it does. We’ve all become accustomed to dominance over the Cards and enjoyed the steady growth of a respectable football program. While we hadn’t won the SEC East title yet, Big Blue was usually in the somewhere in the hunt down the stretch. Our collective Big Blue identity was one of confidence, if not arrogance. Season stumbles were forgiven in the name of long-term program progress. Football mistakes were attributed to players (See Mike Hartline) because the coaching staff had a plan that demonstrated potential. The coaches had the trust of Big Blue Nation, and the future was bright. Well that was fun.
The Big Blue Constituency (When the BBN gets sassy) appears to be turning on this coaching staff, and things only get worse for Joker & Co. from here. Ole Miss looks like the only SEC game where Kentucky may not enter as underdogs, and Jacksonville State? Click here and vomit. But uh, we’ve got weapons; we’ve still got weapons, Bruce. Morgan Newton runs the no huddle offense very well and E.J. Fields proved he could catch the ball and stuff. If Matt Smith and Billy Joe Murphy can get healthy, it is possible that the offensive line could hold off the hoards long enough for Clemons and Williams to get to the line of scrimmage. The defense gave up just over 320 yards, but if Theodore Bridgewater ends up getting racks on racks on racks of yards this season, we won’t feel quite so bad.
Look, I’m not trying to sound like a Drake mixtape and bring everyone down, but the call for a coaching change is building and may very well grow more audible each week. But how much of the current and impending criticism directed at the coaching staff is warranted? Not in terms of philosophy and draw plays, but what levels of success can Kentucky actually achieve? Over the next few weeks, I want to explore this much-debated question: as Kentucky fans, what should our expectations realistically be? Obviously, answering the big question requires addressing several initial questions. So here’s question number one BBN, what collegiate programs should serve as the benchmarks for Kentucky football? Think high school recruiting bases, endowment, conferences, state economic conditions, TV markets etc. Get at me.