In between errands yesterday I tuned into my buddy Nick Coffey’s afternoon radio show where he was playing with a fun summer topic, just from a little different perspective. If you could only win one game this season in the UK/UofL series, would you pick basketball or football?
Most UofL fans sided with football. Their reasoning is what I found to be hilarious — because a loss to Kentucky could knock them out of the College Football Playoff. You can’t say Cards’ fans don’t dream big. Coffey picked the basketball game because he’s tired of watching Calipari dominate Pitino year after year after year after year after year after year after year after year.
For the proper Kentucky perspective, let’s look at the pros and cons of each.
Basketball Win, Football Loss
The status quo is essentially unchanged. Cal has bigger guns than Pitino, guns so big that it doesn’t matter that the game is at the Yum! Center. The football team could still become bowl eligible without a win at Papa John’s, but it would be difficult. It would also extend the Governor’s Cup losing streak to a brutal six. Not quite as bad as Rick is vs. Cal, but it would be another bad demoralizing way to end a football season.
Football Win, Basketball Loss
It would be tough to handle a monumental basketball upset against Louisville. If Onauku leaves, they’ll be leaning on Donavan Mitchell, Deng Adel and VJ King to do all of their heavy lifting. Bam, Monk, Fox, and Briscoe should be able to have a field day, making a loss a tough pill to swallow.
However, a football win would be an even bigger upset. They might have lofty expectations for their team, but that’s not the case with Lamar Jackson. Carving up Kentucky last year was just the beginning for this kid, which makes last year’s loss even more frustrating. They had opportunities two years in a row to get the win, and now the Cats’ window of opportunity is even narrower.
Even though I am a self-proclaimed ‘football guy,’ if I’m forced to choose one it’s a simple choice — you take the win in football. The basketball team could still win a national championship with a loss to Louisville. The football team’s chances of a bowl become slim to none without a win over Louisville.
Would you do the same, or would you rather see Cal continue his dominance over Rick?