Saturday brought new life into Mark Stoops and the Cats football team after they defeated South Carolina 17-10, getting them back to 2-2 on the year. The defense showed a side not yet seen this year and Benny Snell cemented himself as UK’s next up and coming stud ball carrier. Sure, we were playing a team coached by the same guy who led Florida to its first eight loss season in thirty-four years, but we’re not very good either so who cares. The win was enough to lift the spirits of the players, coaches, and a majority of the Big Blue Nation, helping us hold onto hope for another week.
Now, we have to go to Tuscaloosa and play freakin’ Alabama. We will not be playing a football team on Saturday, we will be playing a machine. Let me clarify what I mean when I say “machine.” Alabama is not a 21st century computing machine designed to cater to the needs of the operator. They are an Industrial Revolution age coal crusher that, with no remorse, will grind a human body into pieces with one false step. Much like a coal crusher, the Bama machine possesses no feelings and merely has but one function and that is to crush the opponent and produce efficiently burning victories.
The almighty football deities were very cruel for inserting such a game dead smack in the middle of Kentucky’s four most important games of the season. For the Cats to continue the slight upward trend they are on, they will need to escape Saturday with all of their limbs intact. I will not sugar coat it. Alabama is deeper, stronger, meaner and faster than Kentucky on virtually all fronts. Our players will become fatigued, thus injury prone much sooner than theirs. Our offense which relies heavily on the legs of a second string quarterback and a tandem of running backs (arguably our two most valuable players), cannot afford a single injury to either of those positions if we want to have a prayer of winning the following three games.
So let’s just not play Alabama. No seriously, concede the victory. I do not want to play Alabama because it is extremely high risk and little to no reward. Sure, it offers our players more opportunities to get reps in a real game situation but more reps also equals more opportunities for our key players to get hurt/injured. Alabama is big and mean and I am scared of them.
Is this the cowardly way out? Yes, absolutely. Somebody once told me that if you haven’t gotten your ass beat a few times then you aren’t fighting enough. I found that to be the stupidest bit of advice I’ve ever heard and decided from then on to use my brain and simple logic when picking my fights (this only applies to verbal arguments I’ve been in, because I’m a sissy and a fist fight is an instant death wish for me). Everyone remembers the loss to Florida a few games ago. That was a drunken one on one bare knuckle brawl outside the local watering hole which resulted in some minor cuts and bruising. Sure it hurt but it wasn’t anything a little ibuprofen and ice couldn’t heal. However, as stated earlier, Alabama is a machine optimized and manufactured to deliver 200 “butt kickings” in the amount of time the average wage worker can deliver one, capable of working longer hours without any family obligations to hinder its production. They could instantly paralyze any of the team’s progress in one play. We simply do not have the personnel to match up with them.
I know, ultimately, there is zero chance Stoops and the players will choose to forfeit a loss to the Crimson Tide on Saturday. There is a lot of pride that comes along with playing the game of football and I understand that. I don’t play football. So, being on the outside looking in I see a very dangerous match up and this is why I think choosing not play Saturday is a very reasonable strategy. A sport I do play is golf (LOL go figure!), and if there’s one thing I’ve learned from golf it is that the result is the only thing that matters. It makes no difference how you arrive at the result, whatsoever. Stoops still has a shot to get back to six wins but it will be nearly impossible if the roster becomes any more depleted than it already is. 6-6 is 6-6. That’s the only thing that matters and at the end of the year when we’re going wild with our Wildcat Friends at the Liberty Bowl, a forfeit to Alabama will be merely a distant memory. I’m not sayin’, I’m just sayin’.