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BTI’s Rants and Ramblings: They are who we thought they were!

The first 3 games of this season for Kentucky have really been quite amazing.  The dismal performance against WKU left fans already wondering what might follow this season.  Then a complete 180 against Miami (OH) flipped the fan emotions once again towards potential with this team.  Then a Louisville game that saw flashes of real hope, but in the end showed the Cats are still a ways away to compete with a Top 25 team.  Depth on the lines, dropped passes, inconsistent QB play all led to the Cats dropping the game to Louisville.  But, after 3 weeks of varying results, I think we can come to 1 conclusion:

The Cats are who we thought they were going to be.

Clearly, the talent level has increased overall on the team.  The young wide receivers have shown flashes of brilliance, some of the young defensive players have been spectacular.  The team is giving a significantly higher level of effort.  Mark Stoops and Neal Brown appear to be much better at game planning, but more importantly, at IN-GAME ADJUSTMENTS.  We’ve seen the passing game expand some from last year.  And the defensive line (sans WKU) has been the strong unit on the team.

But, we’ve also seen the negative side of this team.  Those same talented wideouts have shown the ability to drop a few passes, often stalling drives.  The running game has been solid, but not consistent.  And quarterback play has been wildly inconsistent with both Smith and Whitlow showing good drives and bad drives.  But that inconsistent play has led to UK rarely able to sustain long drives.  On the defensive end, Kentucky has been able to stop the run at times.  But injury and fatigue seem to plague the Cats as both Western and UL were able to run the ball well against UK in the 2nd half.  And the defensive secondary has been barely noticeable on the field, yet to record an interception.  While they haven’t been torched as many thought they would, they have been playing very conservative to avoid the big play, often leaving the shorter passes open.

But again, none of these things surprise me.  Nothing has happened this season where I thought “boy, I didn’t see that coming.”  But what about you?  What things have surprised you, disappointed you, or been exactly what you expected through 3 games this season?

Article written by Bryan the Intern

19 Comments for BTI’s Rants and Ramblings: They are who we thought they were!



  1. dude
    9:06 am September 19, 2013 Permalink

    surprised that Whitlow started against WKU…disappointed he played THREE quarters thereafter



  2. NotSatire
    9:13 am September 19, 2013 Permalink

    Surprised that the Defense is coming on…UF will be a good test. Disappointed in dropped balls and
    other Offensive mishaps (double entendre intended).



  3. rick
    9:18 am September 19, 2013 Permalink

    Disappointed that the coaches started Whitlow in the Western game, if Smith had started that would have been a win. Not surprised that Smith is doing a good job , he has always been a good quarterback untill he got hurt.



  4. UK Terry
    9:19 am September 19, 2013 Permalink

    Run blocking is atrocious. Injury nicks are exposing lack of depth. Give the team a C so far. Not good. Not terrible. Believe strongly in coaching staff.



  5. asdf
    9:22 am September 19, 2013 Permalink

    Smith could be a really good QB if he were so darn fragile. That’s just frustrating.



  6. NL
    9:22 am September 19, 2013 Permalink

    I think we will be surprised by and disappointed with everyone at different points in the season. Consistency only comes with repetition of good habits. And our players have a lot of bad habits thanks to the former coaching staff that was sub-par. You can’t really evaluate the staff very well this year because it takes time to correct ingrained mistakes. Next year the expectations will increase some



  7. niaps
    9:27 am September 19, 2013 Permalink

    Really disappointed in the quarterback play especially Whitlow who by the way is no quarterback. Surprised by how well the defense has come on. Believe we have a chance against the gayturds if we contain their running game well. Still gotta score pts. against that tuff defense of theirs so dropped passes are not an option.



  8. claiborne_field
    9:41 am September 19, 2013 Permalink

    Disappointed the staff seems to have a bit of that old school “seniority” mentality. Why has it taken 3 games to figure out Kemp is the better option as opposed to Sanders/George. I take talent over seniority every time.



  9. BluKudzu
    9:47 am September 19, 2013 Permalink

    It is, what it is. With Smith coming off an ankle injury, and rehabbing his shoulder, we should only expect what we have gotten from him at QB. Mobility and accuracy, as well as, ability to put zip on the ball are questionable. I am not seeing the 300+ yards per game QB from last year prior to his injuries. Not really surprised by his effort to compete, the guy has heart. Whitlow is a bit of a surprise for me. Taking an Athlete that played his butt off last year on an extremely simple offense, now having the deer in the headlights look on the field. But, he was an athlete coming out of HS, not a BCS QB.
    Backs are performing well, but the line play, both sides of the ball, is like Dirt in a Dyson, kind of all over the board and very, very inconsistent. Unfortunately, the line is where every game is won or lost.
    Defensively, not as bad as I had been lead to believe. Although not stout by anyone’s definition, thus far has shown it was not nearly as bad as last season. It really only had one direction to go. Special teams seems a bit shaky at times, but I am hoping hey will become a bit more solid. Overall, given what the new coaching staff had to work with, there is no denying the team is performing a bit better, and will remain a work in progress throughout the season. I think they may win 2 more games and have a chance at an upset, should they get the entire team performing at its best. Three games in about where an undermanned team with a new coaching staff would be, there is much potential to do much better. Better than last year, but what would not be? Somewhere between a C and a C-? Check again at the halfway point.



  10. theWilkman
    9:54 am September 19, 2013 Permalink

    BTI’s writing challenge of the day:

    How many sentences can you start with a coordinating conjunction?



  11. O T I S
    9:58 am September 19, 2013 Permalink

    Future looks bright. That said, it looks like another year of 2-10 for the Cats



  12. Woohop
    10:33 am September 19, 2013 Permalink

    BTI. It seems that you used over- exaggerated adjectives way too much when describing some of the points in your article. Phrases like “solid but inconsistent” running game(which one is it, or is it more consistent? More: “wildly” inconsistent QB play…….good drives /bad drives……really? Nothing in between……like “as planned”? More: Stopping the run “at times……..really? Seems like the run defense was a strong asset, until end of game. Where is the credit for this? More: The defensive secondary being “barely noticeable”……are your serious?
    Point is, this style of “journalism”(??) is sensational, and extreme. Where is the Fact-Based aspect that avoids extremes and validates a point? Seems as if your perspective is either a glass full or a glass empty……nothing in between. Yes, this team hasn’t hit on all cylinders in the first three games, but IMO they have shown soooooo much more than last year’s team and have exceeded overall the expectations to date this year. What I see is a “glass three-quarters full” and I focus on the good…..not the bad



  13. jpg
    11:23 am September 19, 2013 Permalink

    There is little that I am surprised about at this time….Maybe the dropped passes. We are looking at a team that has little depth, and a ton of youth. They are learning a new system, have a tough schedule to experience these growing pains, and are experiencing the injury portion of football.

    What many do not recognize is that these 3 games are the first times that UK’s new staff has had to actually see their team perform in their new offense and defense. Before the season started, the staff had to determine the depth chart by practice alone. In practice, Whitlow might have been the best option, but when the season started his nerves showed through. Same thing for Jo-Jo Kemp. Kemp has played very well in his appearances for UK, but the coaching staff had to go off of practices to decide the pecking order prior to the season (which is why he was behind others).

    All I am saying is that, those people that keep on criticizing the staff for playing this guy or not playing that guy have to remember that this is the first 3 games they have been able to evaluate their players in actual game environments within their schemes.



  14. jpg
    11:28 am September 19, 2013 Permalink

    Wow..I need to start re-reading my post for obvious grammatical/structure errors.



  15. twistedmike
    11:33 am September 19, 2013 Permalink

    I like what I see so far yes they are making mistakes but they have improved every game so far. That is a lot better than previous staff. Plus when the defense has gotten beat in the last game it was because they were tired in the second half but at least they were in position and we are actually tackling now.



  16. Biglaw Dawgin'
    1:34 pm September 19, 2013 Permalink

    This post is spot-on. The Cats are who we (at least most of us) thought they were. Well, technically a little worse because of the loss to WKU, but no one expected them to win more than 4 games, right? Put your hand down Kige Ramsey. Anyways, enough of this pigskin stuff, let’s get to what matters around here: Hoops.



  17. The Air Raid
    1:39 pm September 19, 2013 Permalink

    Besides the game against Miami OH, which i think Trinity HS could actually beat, the passing game looks eerily similar to the offense that Joker used, which everyone hated. Screen passes, 3-5 yard underneath routes, etc. And Max reverting back to throwing to his 1st read. I won’t give up on it this year, because to run that type of offense, you have to have athletes(speed) to make those plays. I do love the commitment to a traditional running game and hope we don’t abandon that because you can’t win in the SEC without a running game. But my concern is that we will never have the athletes to run the Air Raid and be successful against the top 5-6 teams cause they will always have better athletes. There is a reason that no team in the sec runs it. Teams figured how to stop it 10 years ago which is why teams from other conferences who avg 50 points a game play a top 5-6 sec team, they score 17 points. I hope it is successful, but if not, i hope Brown has a back up scheme in mind. What i have seen from the defense the 1st 3 weeks, i have no doubt that Stoops and Elliot know what there doing and will have the def at the highest level it can be. More than anything i believe 100% in Stoops and the decisions he is going to make, so if he thinks Brown and the Air Raid can get the job done, then i will believe the same thing. GO BIG BLUE!!!!!!



  18. Hey UK Terry
    1:46 pm September 19, 2013 Permalink

    You might wanna actually start watching the games. “Run Blocking is atrocious”? That has been the consistent good spot of the 3 games thus far. UK is averaging 213 yds rushing per game. Any team in college football would take those numbers in a heartbeat. That has never happened since i have been alive. 36 years old.



  19. Hey woohop
    1:52 pm September 19, 2013 Permalink

    This is not the NY times or Boston globe, this is a fan blog!! Get a life and go critique people who actually want to be known as journalist. The KSR motto is ” University of Kentucky Basketball, Football, and Recruiting news brought to you in the most ridiculous manner possible.” Can you read that last part? “The most ridiculous manner possible.” Please call 911 if somebody is holding a gun to your head and making you log on to your cpu, click on this website, and making you read it.