Each day on this very site you’re inundated with details and goings-on of the University of Kentucky’s most popular two sports: football and basketball. These reports, to tip my hat to my colleagues, are well-researched, spot-on, and deliver a wealth of information upon what we the fans can expect during any given game. These reports detail upcoming match-ups with deft analysis, using phrases like “Look for so-and-so to run all over a weak defense,” and “Expect blah-blah-blah to rise to the challenge when he faces a matchup where he can really shine.”
This is, of course, all fine and good. But if you’re like me, you have other needs which heretofore have not yet been met. I’m talking, of course, about what we can expect from this season in pre-game celebration. Because I’m here for you, and because I’ve got nothing if not your back, Need-to-Know Wednesday is proud to present your official 2007 UK Football Tailgating Preview. Here, you can get a glimpse of the things you’ll see over the next few months’ home games and better know what to expect as football season begins to roll along. Please enjoy.
September 1: Eastern Ky at University of Kentucky
Opening day! Everyone will be very excited as the masses of vehicles begin to congregate on the hallowed grounds of Commonwealth Stadium. You’ll be ready with a hot grill, well-packed and refrigerated meats, and a hearty stockpile of Miller Lite and Maker’s. You’ll enjoy yourself thoroughly though the temperature is still warm (a balmy 86 degrees), though the bourbon will start to hit you about forty-five minutes before kickoff. You’ll pull through like a champ, however, sneaking your flask through security and rooting the Cats to a mighty, if predictable, season-opening victory. Afterward, a few rounds at Two Keys will even out the night and you’ll go home happy, serene, and grateful the day finally arrived after a summer of waiting.
September 8: Kent State at University of Kentucky
You’ll grill brats as everyone reminisces about great times the previous weekend (can you believe Philip put that box on his head and went up to those people? I can’t). Angela will bring jello shots that will be gone in minutes, and Beam and Coke will be the order of the day. Stacey and Brad will look like they might hook up, but you’ll discretely pull him aside and give him the “low-down” (chlamydia, you hear!) while someone keeps climbing into the truck and replaying Kid Rock’s anthemic Cowboy. Lori and Steven stop by for a little while, but Lori doesn’t drink because her dad’s a minister or something. Then it’s off to the game, where UK makes it a heart-thumper before winning by a field goal. McCarthy’s, anyone?
September 15: Louisville at University of Kentucky
Uh-oh! State rivalry! A tough Card team might be the first test of strength for the Cats, but you’ll be oblivious by the time you’ve polished off that six of Budweiser Select and followed it up with most of a flask of Jack. Your friend Charles, whose parents have a lot of money and let him do whatever he wants, will be there and he will tell you he’s taking the rest of the semester off to climb mountains in Peru or something. The tough, handsome guys from the tailgate next to you will threaten to kill your buzz when they tell you and your friends you’re a bunch of losers, then pants you and everyone will laugh. UK loses this one by 7, but it doesn’t stop you from slurring your way through “Easy Lover” at the Chinoe Pub.
September 29: Florida Atlantic
The first cold snap! Great football weather. Everyone is there and burgers are sizzling on the grill! Lori has to leave after her minister dad comes by and sees all the drinking, but the party resumes after the drama passes. The Dean of Students stops by and tells you he’s keeping an eye on you and your friends and warns you that if you try to pull anything, he’ll have you all kicked out of school. He doesn’t say that to the handsome tough guys at the neighboring tailgate, because their leader’s father donates money to the school. All in all, a nice buzz and an easy win — celebrate at Marikka’s!
October 13: LSU at University of Kentucky
Even though everyone is really bummed because John Goodman was killed in a plane crash this week, the liquor flows and the music ROCKS OUT! It’s hotter than usual for this time of year because two days ago scientists announced that the sun may be moving closer to the earth, but cold beer quenches your thirst. You and Brad have a heart to heart about how he hooked up with Stacy anyway and is sorry he did (chlamydia, you hear!) and Lori is nowhere to be found. The handsome tough guys play their music louder than yours and then spin their jeep tires over your space, spewing mud everywhere. You’re loopy on Everclear by the third quarter, however, and later pass out on the floor at the Springs Inn Lounge until the owner kicks you in the head and tells you to get out. Cats lose by 14.
October 20: Florida at University of Kentucky
The Gators arrive in Lexington! But this might be the year! The grass is dying state-wide as the oppressive heat beats down, but upside-down margaritas keep everyone drinking and laughing. Check out Lori — she’s wearing really skimpy clothes! The handsome tough guys plant some weed in your glove compartment and call the Dean of Students. He ruins the party when he shows up and has everyone extracted from campus. You can’t believe it! It looks like the end of your tailgating fun.
October 27: Mississippi State at University of Kentucky
It’s homecoming, but there’s no party for you and your friends. You’re not allowed on campus.
November 24: Tennessee at University of Kentucky
You’re not going to take it anymore! You ignore the rules and come back to campus anyway, music louder than ever. Everyone is sticking it to the man and going crazy when a bicycle messenger comes by and brings the party to silence as he reads a scrawled message from a Peruvian sherpa that Charles has been killed in an avalanche. Dedicating the rest of the tailgate to Hunter, you do some shots of Jaeger and Lori’s minister dad shows up with the church congregation to drag Lori away. She tells him that he can’t control her and you and Lori challenge the handsome tough guys to a dance-off and totally embarrass them. Brad gets a welcome phone call from his doctor (not chlamydia!), the Dean of Students gets an egg broken on his head, everyone laughs, you kiss the handsome tough guy’s girlfriend, and the Wildcats defeat the Volunteers only moments before the sun crashes into the earth, vaporizing it.
There you go, folks. Looks like it’s going to be a great year for tailgating! I know that, like me, you can’t wait, but until then maybe I can tide you over with a little piece of film I have affectionately dubbed “Two drunken foreigners trying to put a tree trunk onto a bicycle.” Until next time, friends.
That is all.