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A letter to Kentucky Football before the Georgia game

Dear Kentucky Football,

It’s me. Your jaded devotee. We both know how challenging it’s been for us. You, my cruel obsession full of empty promises. Me, your naïve enabler full of unfounded optimism.

For as long as I can remember, it’s always been the same.

Section 110, row 7, seat 12 of old-school Commonwealth Stadium. Sitting with my dad on your hard metal bleachers that were blazing hot at the beginning of the season and freezing cold at the end. There was the crazy fan a few rows in front refusing to sit down; the guy to my right with anger management issues; the gentlemen in front of me with his hidden flask of bourbon; the kind old couple next to me who always had to leave early. I remember them all. Our little community of misery persevering together through endless “that’s so KY football” moments.

You’d think I would give up by now, but we both know I can’t.

So here I am. And once again, I find my imaginations impossible to contain. Once again, I find my heart precariously exposed to the possibility of something special. I know I should know better. But I just can’t help myself.

Especially this year.

This time you seem different. No gimmicks. No flukes. Just lining up and beating teams, because you’re actually the better team. And so maybe this Saturday could be different. Maybe, just maybe, this one time you will do for me what you seem never able to do—exceed my expectations.

Listen, even my fanatical idealism has its limits. I’m not asking you to beat Alabama and win the SEC; I’m asking you to beat Georgia and win the East. One time in my lifetime I want to be in Atlanta. And for the first time in my lifetime, it’s right there in front of us. All I’m asking you to do is freaking take it.

None of the experts think it will happen, and Vegas says it shouldn’t happen. Yet I’m choosing to believe. I know I shouldn’t, but I’m going to let myself believe this dream can actually become a reality.

Georgia is amazing, but not without flaws. And their flaws just happen to be where you are strongest. Their offense is good, but their O-line isn’t. And to that I have two words: Josh Allen. Their defense is good, but they have, at times, struggled to stop the run. And to that I have two more words: Benny Snell.

But it just can’t be our stars. Every player is going to have to show up on every play. Every fan is going to have to shout out on every play. And even then, we’re going to need some things to go our way. I’m a pastor. Of all people, I know how problematic it is to pray for things to go my way in a football game, but this week, this game, I just might have to.

Let’s be honest, win or lose this Saturday, we both know I’m not going anywhere. If I was going to leave, I would have done so a long time ago, because, quite frankly, you’re not easy to love. Me perpetually hoping. You frequently failing. And if you fail me again this weekend, I’ll do what I always do, which is get over it and come back next weekend. It is what it is. You’re my team, for better or worse.

But I, your fatigued yet faithful fan, am asking you to be different. One time. One game. Can things go differently for us?

I’ll be honest, you’ve trained me to be a cynic. But I’m choosing not to give in to cynicism. I’m choosing to believe you are going to reward your fanbase for years of long-suffering devotion.

You’re going to beat Georgia. You’re going to play in Atlanta. And you’re going to heal our many painful years together with this one win.

Faithfully Yours,

Robert Cunningham


Article written by Robert Cunningham

18 Comments for A letter to Kentucky Football before the Georgia game

  1. 14195611
    6:18 pm October 30, 2018 Permalink

    Robert Cunningham, you speak for all us jaded, devoted fans of UK football. May your simple wish come true.

    6:18 pm October 30, 2018 Permalink

    Never has a fan base given so much, and been rewarded with so little. One game to wipe out years of unmet expectation and dashed dreams…no pressure.

  3. dcforuk
    6:34 pm October 30, 2018 Permalink

    Now faith is being sure of what you hope for and certain of what you do not see. Stoops and Co. have given us reason to be faithful. Win or lose this has been an awesome season! You are not doing this for the fans. You are doing this for your brothers in battle and your field commander! Now go out and battle and give an accurate account of the one who gave you your ability and all of those who sacrificed in your lives to get you where you are!

  4. KYcats11
    6:39 pm October 30, 2018 Permalink


  5. suppie
    6:46 pm October 30, 2018 Permalink

    “Me perpetually hoping. You frequently failing.”

    so well put.

  6. Lhw
    7:01 pm October 30, 2018 Permalink

    Perfectly said!!!! I feel like you wrote down my thoughts and feeling.

  7. runningunnin.454
    7:05 pm October 30, 2018 Permalink

    Very eloquent; and, I think your words touched most of us. Now let’s beat hell out of Georgia…oops; sorry, Reverend.
    But, freaking? If you’re going to use the F word, go for the gold. Ha ha, just kidding.

  8. SuperTroy18
    7:31 pm October 30, 2018 Permalink

    Fans. Players. Coaches. I think we all know that every one of us is going to give this game everything we’ve got. I’m hoping the moment isn’t too big for our guys. They wanted to be here. They are. Let’s take advantage of it. If we give them everything we have, and they somehow win, then well done guys. We will be there next week and next year and hope for the best. But, if we give it all we have on that field, I don’t think they CAN beat us. I think our best is better than theirs. So let’s get it done.

  9. Jesus H. Chrysler
    7:58 pm October 30, 2018 Permalink

    Do ur part. We’ll do ours.

  10. bigbluejon
    8:19 pm October 30, 2018 Permalink

    Amen Brother

  11. Matt10
    9:26 pm October 30, 2018 Permalink

    Very eloquent but read it from the point of view of a Georgia or Alabama fan. ?

  12. dgtuk
    9:29 pm October 30, 2018 Permalink

    This is a great week. Nothing to lose…so to speak. All I hope is that we are aggressive and play to try and win the game vs conservative and play to keep it close. I don’t care about close…play to win…whatever that means in terms of aggressive offense.!

    Go Cats..Great Season no matter what happens!

  13. Mr. Salton
    9:40 pm October 30, 2018 Permalink

    Great read.

  14. Nice job, and GO CATS!!!

  15. cats646
    9:50 pm October 30, 2018 Permalink

    I know we can do this BBN!!!!!!!!!!
    This one is for everything boys!!
    All the last second losses, all the BS calls, THE CURSE!!!!!!!!!!!! This will officially put all of that behind us!! Idk if any of the players read this stuff, but if you do, believe me when I tell you that it means SO MUCH to us fans!! What do the coal miners and sawmill workers, farmers and factory temps all have to look forward to at the end of the week? It’s KENTUCKY FOOTBALL!!!! It’s getting to see those letters across your chest and feeling proud!! We’ve had to hide when all the other SEC fans talk about football for so long!!!!! They just laugh at the thought of KY actually being good. I’ve already cried once this year after the sweet victory in the swamp. Please for the love of everything make us cry again! Give it your all defense,turn it up one degree!!!!!!! Don’t even let them have a first down!! Offense, you’ve broke out of your slump in the last quarter you played. Now it’s time to show that were more than just the best defense in the nation!!!! We can be the best TEAM in the nation!!!!!!!! Aggressive attitude every play!! No that your better than their defense!!!!!!!!!! Touchdown Terry, show up on Saturday!!!!! Think quick, be quick. The ones who are afraid to fail never succeed!! YOU can do this!! Dorian, two years ago that ball went through your hands in the end zone. GET IT BACK SATURDAY!!!!! You were injured last year and got to be a part of this team this year!! Make it worth it!!!!!! And Benny, I will thank you everytime I think of Kentucky football for the rest of my life for what you’ve done so far. But this Saturday, go out there and lay it all on the line!!!!!!!! You’ve put this team on your back so many times!! BBN will be there to have your back Saturday!!!! No that were behind you and run like you have all 60,000 fans in that stadium right beside you!!!!! There’s not one guy on that defense that can bring you down!! Hell, there’s not 4 guys on that defense that can bring you down!!!!! FIGHT FOR EVERY YARD!! Drag all of dawg nation into the end zone at your feet !! And when you look up at that camera, let them know that there is NO WAY they can stop you and this offense that so many have questioned this year!! It all comes down to Saturday!! I love this team, I love BBN, and I am going to love playing in the SEC championship!!!!! Go out there and prove you’re the best boys!! GO BIG BLUE!!!!!!!!!

  16. Brian in Franklin
    11:05 pm October 31, 2018 Permalink

    This is the best piece i’ve read on this site since Freddie. You’ve summed up BBN football fandom to date. GO CATS!!!!