So close, yet so far. The hangover from what almost was hit me like a ton of bricks this morning. Trust me, going in I was as un-optimistic as the next guy, but after seeing that Kentucky football team play in the first half against South Carolina — with a sense of passion and intensity we haven’t seen in a long time — I was just about ready to call the upset complete with well over 30 minutes left in the game.
Then, perhaps as a bit of foreshadowing of what was to come, pitiful clock management and a freshman showing his youth closed out the half missing out on points. Kentucky was inside the ten-yard line with under a minute to play, and were knocking on the door of a 24-7 halftime lead. Not so fast, as a fumble led to the clock expiring.
South Carolina remembered they were the No. 6 team in the nation and the rest is history.
— Joker Phillips was proud of his team and the effort they showed, “The thing we did was play with total focus.”
— With a strong first-half showing against South Carolina, is the only thing now lacking from the program fan support?
— Attendance at the game was 49,810. The second lowest total of the season, topped only by the Kent State game which drew a little over 48,000. The decline on fan numbers gets steeper.
— Southern Mississippi is winless and statistically among the worst teams in college football. Louisville needed a heroic effort late in the game to win, 21-17. When Western Kentucky played the same Southern Miss team and blew the Golden Eagles out, 42-17. Are the Hilltoppers the best team in the state? You could make an argument now.
— The Kentucky volleyball team is fresh off its upset of No. 25 Tennessee in Memorial Coliseum last week. They will return to action today against Auburn seeking a third consecutive conference victory.
— The men’s soccer team is riding its longest winning streak in four years as they open up Conference USA play (that’s right, men’s soccer plays in C-USA), hosting Memphis this afternoon. The four-game win streak is the longest since 2009.