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BTI’s Rants and Ramblings: What If This Play Didn’t Happen?

One half of football: 11-19, 287 yards, 4 TD, 0 INT
1st Play of 2nd Half: 32-yard completion

At that point in the Southern Miss game last year, Drew Barker was 12-20 for 319 yards and 4 touchdowns.  And then this play happened:

From that moment Barker attempted to make something out of nothing, he went 6 for 16 for 15 yards, 0 touchdowns and 5 interceptions over the next 2+ games.

That play above led to Southern Miss coming back and stunning Kentucky, a deflated UK team heading to Florida and getting trounced (with Barker getting hurt) and then Barker trying to make it work in the New Mexico State game before throwing an early interception and getting pulled.  We haven’t seen him since.

Now, Stephen Johnson emerged as a great leader, winning 7 games and 4 SEC games and in absolutely the starter coming into this year.  But you have to wonder if that play doesn’t happen and UK scores on that drive, probably wins that game, what kind of season happens last year?  Do you think that UK wins the same amount of games or maybe more?  Maybe less?  Barker’s injury and UK moving to a run-based offense led to the emergence of Benny Snell.  But Johnson didn’t have any half of football anywhere close to Barker’s, even in his great Louisville performance.

Drew Barker’s first half was probably better than any half we’ve seen since Tim Couch.  That seems ridiculous but there have not been many 300 yard, 4 touchdown halves by UK quarterbacks since Couch, including Lorenzen and Woodson.

So my question is if the program is in a better, worse, or same place right now if Barker doesn’t fumble that ball away against Southern Miss (and then doesn’t get hurt against Florida).  The answer might bring you closer to a decision on how short a leash Stephen Johnson gets this season.

Article written by Bryan the Intern

13 Comments for BTI’s Rants and Ramblings: What If This Play Didn’t Happen?

  1. Stephen
    10:15 am August 24, 2017 Permalink


    Let’s continue to put that bug in the ear of the fans! It has always been so great when a portion of our fans are screaming for a quarterback change the moment things get a little tense!

    Woohoo!!! Who needs anyone else to sink our ship!!! Let’s do it to ourselves!!!

  2. Sentient Third Eye
    10:18 am August 24, 2017 Permalink

    The O-line would still have developed into a beast, so our offense would have been fine regardless of the QB. Barker would have thrown for a ton of yards, and several receivers would have double the stats. That would have been great. We don’t know how Barker would have been in the clutch (where Johnson excelled), but he would have scored enough from anywhere on the field that it probably wouldn’t have mattered as much.

    But on the other side, a less-emphasized run game would have probably focused on one key back, which would have been Boom. Snell would have never been given a chance to blossom, a chance born by the team’s necessity to create offense while they were trying to quickly refomulate the offense. With a lesser run game to contend with, opponents would have been free to focus on our passing game, changing the entire focus of how we were defended last season.

    I’d say those positives and negatives are a wash, overall.

  3. UKrailbird
    10:29 am August 24, 2017 Permalink

    Another stupid question from BTI based on a hypothetical premise of what “might” have occurred in the past. Can we please move forward positively with where we are in the present?

  4. That video is of the ENTIRE game. Can we narrow it down to the play in question?

    • Mathlete
      12:58 pm August 24, 2017 Permalink

      Nope, you just have to guess.

    • Mathlete
      1:05 pm August 24, 2017 Permalink

      Seriously though, I think he’s talking about 1:43:50 when he gets stripped and SMU recovers

  5. 3Goggles
    10:45 am August 24, 2017 Permalink

    BTI consistently writes the worst articles for this site.

  6. RackEmWillie
    11:02 am August 24, 2017 Permalink

    Or, the defense could have played even remotely decent, UK holds on to win one at the end, Barker still looks like hot garbage against Florida, gets injured against New Mexico State, and Johnson comes in and we win 8 games instead of 7.

    Problem solved.

  7. nunya
    11:38 am August 24, 2017 Permalink

    Barker actually was hurt last summer, reinjured himself against SMU and tried to fight through it the next two games but was ineffective. It’s easy to see why the staff stuck with him as SJ was truly awful against anyone other than NMSU early on but improved dramatically throughout the season before throwing in a clunker against Georgia Tech. SJ has looked great in fall camp though.

    There’s no way to know how Barker staying healthy might have changed the season. Let’s just be glad that UK has two, or even three, QBs who are good enough to play SEC level football this year.

  8. za
    11:48 am August 24, 2017 Permalink

    JD Harmon made some outstanding individual plays in this game.

  9. RealCatsFan
    12:15 pm August 24, 2017 Permalink

    I just recall that the aftermath of this game was the lowest point for UK Football since the Vandy game just before Joker got fired. Hard to believe that the season turned out the way it did when you look at it at this particular point in time.

  10. 2Dogs
    3:02 pm August 24, 2017 Permalink

    Unless Barker was also a beast on defense it wouldn’t have mattered in the Southern Miss game. He would have had to pass for 1200 yards to make up for our defense in that game.

  11. stoopstroops
    3:28 pm August 24, 2017 Permalink

    Is it possible for me to block all of BTI posts??
    It’s one thing to play devils advocate but this dudes just a complete joke!