Most Recent Posts
- Former UK great Jeff Sheppard excited about recruiting class, but says fans should remember players are young
- Kentucky fans even took time to throw up the “3 goggles” in the Alps
- Signee Marcus Lee says Kentucky “will refuse to lose next year”
- Even UK football coach Mark Stoops did not expect this much fan support at Kentucky
- Video: UK softball coach Rachel Lawson previews the Super Regional clash against Arizona State
- ESPN.com’s Jason King seems to have logical rankings going into next season
- Mark Stoops on John Calipari: “I love being around him”
- UK football coach Mark Stoops understands that hiring Vince Marrow was a home run for Kentucky
By LARRY VAUGHT
LOUISVILLE Ã¢â‚¬â€ Kentucky coach John Calipari didnÃ¢â‚¬â„¢t think his team made enough turnovers.
Ã¢â‚¬Å“No sir, I have never had a coach tell me that. I asked him, Ã¢â‚¬ËœDo you want me to go back to having five turnovers every game?Ã¢â‚¬â„¢Ã¢â‚¬Â said Kentucky freshman John Wall.
The Wildcats had only eight turnovers in a ho-hum 94-57 victory over vastly outmanned UNC Asheville here Monday night that Calipari knows was the final dress rehearsal for UKÃ¢â‚¬â„¢s first major tests.
The Cats will host defending national champion North Carolina Saturday and then play Connecticut in New York and at Indiana next week.
Ã¢â‚¬Å“I didnÃ¢â‚¬â„¢t like effort in the first part of the game but I liked how guys played after halftime. I thought they really tried,Ã¢â‚¬Â said Calipari.
They might have, but they better try a lot harder to beat a bigger, more talented North Carolina. Remember, UNC Asheville lost 124-49 at Tennessee after falling behind 50-8 and lost 79-58 at Georgia.
Ã¢â‚¬Å“We had eight turnovers, which isnÃ¢â‚¬â„¢t enough. If you only have eight turnovers, you are not being aggressive. They laughed when I said we didnÃ¢â‚¬â„¢t have enough turnovers. But when you only have eight, you are not playing aggressively,Ã¢â‚¬Â Calipari said.
Wall certainly did play aggressively, though. The talented freshman had 12 points and 14 assists, one shy of the school record. He also got six steals and four rebounds.
Several of WallÃ¢â‚¬â„¢s assists came on fast breaks after steals when he could easily have scored. Instead, he lobbed passes to Patrick Patterson and DeMarcus Cousins for crowd-pleasing dunks.
Ã¢â‚¬Å“If the big guys are out running the court, you want to get them the ball,Ã¢â‚¬Â Wall said. Ã¢â‚¬Å“I would rather do that than score.Ã¢â‚¬Â
Calipari admits Wall is ahead of any freshman guard heÃ¢â‚¬â„¢s had Ã¢â‚¬â€ and he has two former Memphis point guards playing in the NBA that were high draft picks.
Ã¢â‚¬Å“He is trying to listen to what I say,Ã¢â‚¬Â Calipari said.
The Kentucky coach says his daily report from UKÃ¢â‚¬â„¢s strength coach refers to Wall as an Ã¢â‚¬Å“animalÃ¢â‚¬Â and notes how he tries to get better daily. Tutors tell Calipari how hard Wall is working academically in an attempt to get an A in every class Ã¢â‚¬â€ something no one could have anticipated since he is already projected as a potential No. 1 pick in the 2010 NBA draft.
Ã¢â‚¬Å“Certain kids have that drive to stand out and be the best,Ã¢â‚¬Â Calipari said. Ã¢â‚¬Å“One thing different about him is he is a pleaser. He will try to please teammates and coaches. If I do not tell him he is doing good, he will ask if heÃ¢â‚¬â„¢s doing okay.Ã¢â‚¬Â
From what UNC-Asheville coach Eddie Beidenbach saw, he thought Kentucky did better than okay in this game.
Ã¢â‚¬Å“Kentucky gained a lot in this game,Ã¢â‚¬Â Beidenbach said. Ã¢â‚¬Å“They gained confidence and they didnÃ¢â‚¬â„¢t turn the ball over much. Our pressure wasnÃ¢â‚¬â„¢t all that bad, and Kentucky played better than they had in previous games. They played smarter than they had been playing.Ã¢â‚¬Â
Maybe, but Calipari was not convinced.
Ã¢â‚¬Å“This next 10 days we will find out exactly where we are. It is not bad if we lose all three (games) as long as we learn where we are and what we need to work on,Ã¢â‚¬Â Calipari said.
Calipari said his team had been in Ã¢â‚¬Å“six warsÃ¢â‚¬Â before MondayÃ¢â‚¬â„¢s breather that he hoped built Ã¢â‚¬Å“a little bit of confidenceÃ¢â‚¬Â even though he was not pleased with the defense.
But he knows after two days of practice and a short workout Friday, his team has to get ready to be tested like it has not been yet.
Ã¢â‚¬Å“We have two practice days and a Friday to get ready for a top 10 team and then follow with another top 10 team that is mad as heck cause they lost and then we play at Assembly Hall where they win. That is a big game where they are bringing it. We have our work cut out for us,Ã¢â‚¬Â Calipari said. Ã¢â‚¬Å“You want to keep learning about your team and how we are going to play.
Ã¢â‚¬Å“We have one month and some change to get ready for league games. I have not panicked yet. I have one foot and my hands on the panic button, but we have time.Ã¢â‚¬Â
Or at least he hopes so depending on what happens the next three games.
Snapshot of the UK Season
Kentucky Football Notebook
LEXINGTON, Ky. Ã¢â‚¬â€œ With the regular season concluded, hereÃ¢â‚¬â„¢s a quick overview of the 2009 Kentucky football team.Ã‚Â A more extensive notes package will be sent on Tuesday.
- Kentucky finished the regular season with a 7-5 overall record.
- Kentucky has earned at least seven wins in four consecutive seasons for the first time in nearly a century, since 1909-12.
- Kentucky extended its school-record non-conference winning streak to 18 games.Ã‚Â ItÃ¢â‚¬â„¢s the nationÃ¢â‚¬â„¢s second-longest current streak.
- Kentucky went 3-5 in the Southeastern Conference, tying for fourth place in the Eastern Division.
- ItÃ¢â‚¬â„¢s interesting to note that Kentucky exceeded the expectation of every preseason prediction of the national magazines and websites we saw.Ã‚Â UK finished tied for fourth in league play, but was projected fifth or sixth by all national predictors.
- Kentucky notched three SEC road wins Ã¢â‚¬â€œ at Auburn, Vanderbilt and Georgia Ã¢â‚¬â€œ for the first time in 32 years, since 1977.
- Kentucky defeated Auburn for the first time in 43 years, since 1966.
- Kentucky won at Georgia for the first time in 32 years, since 1977.
- KentuckyÃ¢â‚¬â„¢s 42-0 win over Miami (Ohio) was the WildcatsÃ¢â‚¬â„¢ first shutout in 13 years.
- KentuckyÃ¢â‚¬â„¢s win over Louisville was the third year in a row against the in-state rival.
- Three come-from-behind wins in the fourth quarter (Louisville, Auburn, Georgia), giving the Wildcats 12 such wins over the last four seasons.
- For the third-straight year, Kentucky fans broke the school record for average attendance at 69,594 per game.
- Kentucky will play in a bowl game for a school-record fourth-consecutive season.
By LARRY VAUGHT
WouldÃ‚Â you go back to the Music City Bowl to see Kentucky play an Atlantic Coast Conference team?
ThatÃ¢â‚¬â„¢s a question Music City Bowl officials are pondering today as they try to sort out the various bowl possibilities for Southeastern Conference teams.
Kentucky took huge crowds to the Music City Bowl in 2006 and 2007 and fans got to see the Cats beat Clemson and Florida State. Kentucky fans also turned out in force a few weeks ago to watch KentuckyÃ¢â‚¬â„¢s win at Vanderbilt.
However, many fans Ã¢â‚¬â€ and players Ã¢â‚¬â€ were hoping UK would play in the Outback Bowl or Chick-fil-A Bowl this year, especially after the Cats won at Georgia. Then South Carolina upset Clemson, Georgia beat Georgia Tech, Auburn almost beat Alabama, Arkansas almost beat LSU and Kentucky lost to Tennessee. Now there are six 7-5 teams vying for bowl berths..
Since the Outback and Chick-fil-A likely are going different directions now, it seems the Music City Bowl on Dec. 27 is the best option for Kentucky for many reasons.
One, itÃ¢â‚¬â„¢s a closer drive than going to Memphis, Birmingham or Shreveport, La.
Two, the Music City Bowl still is a more prestigious bowl in the minds of almost everyone than bowls in those three cities.
Three, it is the only game on Dec. 27 and will get valuable national exposure, something Kentucky can always use.
To me, thereÃ¢â‚¬â„¢s no reason to feel down about a trip to the Music City Bowl. Music City Bowl officials know they need a fan base that can travel easily after Christmas to see the game and Nashville has been good to the Cats.
It seems like a win-win for Kentucky and the Music City Bowl after all that happened last Saturday.
What do you think? Post your thoughts here and let Music City Bowl officials see that UK fans would be excited about a return trip and would turn out for the game. Or let me know if I am wrong and you would rather go to Memphis, Birmingham or Shreveport.
By LARRY VAUGHT
Patrick Patterson knows Kentucky has not played a ranked team yet this season, but the junior still likes where the Wildcats are going into tonightÃ¢â‚¬â„¢s game in Louisville against North Carolina-Asheville.
Ã¢â‚¬Å“WeÃ¢â‚¬â„¢re a real tough team right now. We went back and got to work in the gym right after the Cancun trip,Ã¢â‚¬Â he said Sunday. Ã¢â‚¬Å“We almost had a heartbreaker (against Stanford) out there in Cancun. Luckily we were fortunate enough to come out with a win at the end.
Ã¢â‚¬Å“WeÃ¢â‚¬â„¢re working hard day in and day out in practice and just improving in all the areas we need. We have a lot of talent, we have a lot of heart and we have the will to win. We never give up. We never surrender out there on the court. I think my teammates are a tough group of guys.Ã¢â‚¬Â
Yet Patterson says it is not hard for him to see areas where the team has room for major improvement.
Ã¢â‚¬Å“Defense, limiting our turnovers, rebounding and blocking out, finishing on the inside,Ã¢â‚¬Â he said.
With games looming against North Carolina, Connecticut and Louisville Ã¢â‚¬â€ all nationally ranked Ã¢â‚¬â€ Patterson knows his younger teammates will be more severely tested.
Ã¢â‚¬Å“We have a lot of freshmen. We have a lot of people that havenÃ¢â‚¬â„¢t played in big-time situations,Ã¢â‚¬Â the junior said. Ã¢â‚¬Å“WeÃ¢â‚¬â„¢re not trying to make excuses for ourselves.
Ã¢â‚¬Å“We have highly ranked recruits who have played in tough games. John (Wall), Eric (Bledsoe), DeMarcus (Cousins) and Daniel (Orton), we know theyÃ¢â‚¬â„¢ve been in tough games in their career and it can transfer over to the college level. They just have to tweak it a little bit and listen to Coach a lot more and do what coach wants us to do.Ã¢â‚¬Â
ThatÃ¢â‚¬â„¢s the same thing Kentucky coach John Calipari has been saying for weeks even though his team is unbeaten in six games.
Ã¢â‚¬Å“We were just trying to keep playing basketball games and try to learn about our team,Ã¢â‚¬Â Calipari said of last weekÃ¢â‚¬â„¢s trip to Cancun. Ã¢â‚¬Å“One of the things I talked about to our team is we have so many young guys that they donÃ¢â‚¬â„¢t understand the ecstasy of winning a championship yet. They just know how they feel when they play well and play bad and thatÃ¢â‚¬â„¢s the thing IÃ¢â‚¬â„¢m zeroing in on now.
Ã¢â‚¬Å“I want players mad when they donÃ¢â‚¬â„¢t play because that means that they have the mindset they should be playing. If a guyÃ¢â‚¬â„¢s not mad when he doesnÃ¢â‚¬â„¢t play, then he probably canÃ¢â‚¬â„¢t play. I want guys angry at themselves when they donÃ¢â‚¬â„¢t play well, when they know theyÃ¢â‚¬â„¢re better than that. But that never supersedes the ecstasy of winning.Ã¢â‚¬Â
Calipari admits he sometimes has to remind himself just how young his team is.
Ã¢â‚¬Å“We are so young. IÃ¢â‚¬â„¢d like to know what other team is starting three freshmen, and their sixth man is a freshman. And then weÃ¢â‚¬â„¢re playing two sophomores, one that never played division one basketball and one that barely played a year ago. Basically thatÃ¢â‚¬â„¢s our team,Ã¢â‚¬Â the Kentucky coach said.
Ã¢â‚¬Å“This next two-week period, coming away from home and playing like this, is good for us. Seeing the support of our crazy fans (in Louisville, theyÃ¢â‚¬â„¢re nuts and I love it, puts the pressure on us to prepare, not to win, but to prepare.Ã¢â‚¬Â
By LARRY VAUGHT
Morgan Newton didnÃ¢â‚¬â„¢t mince words about his feelings.
Ã¢â‚¬Å“You feel like you let a lot of people down. You let the senior class down. There was a great turnout of UK fans, and you feel like you let them down. ItÃ¢â‚¬â„¢s just tough to lose like that,Ã¢â‚¬Â said the Kentucky freshman quarterback after SaturdayÃ¢â‚¬â„¢s 30-24 overtime loss to Tennessee.
Ã¢â‚¬Å“There are a lot of guys down, especially the senior. I can tell you every senior fought to build this program. They affected me as a person and made me better, but I let them down.Ã¢â‚¬Â
Newton was 10-for-22 passing for only 69 yards in the loss to Tennessee that cost UK a chance to finish second in the Southeastern Conference Eastern Division to one of six SEC teams with 7-5 records vying for bowl berths.
He also lost a fumble and was stopped on a third-down run in the final minute that forced UK to settle for a field goal to tie the game rather than a touchdown that would have ended a 24-game losing streak to the Vols.
Ã¢â‚¬Å“They had a great defense, but I think tonight I played like a freshman and hurt my team,Ã¢â‚¬Â Newton said. Ã¢â‚¬Å“I made key mistakes. I fumbled. I overthrew receivers.
Ã¢â‚¬Å“I cannot blame anybody but myself for the mistakes I made out there. I did not understand what the players were talking about when it came to this game. I didnÃ¢â‚¬â„¢t get what playing Tennessee was like until the game started.Ã¢â‚¬Â
Newton part of being a teamÃ¢â‚¬â„¢s quarterback is accepting responsibility for losses like this one and the 31-24 loss to Mississippi State when the Cats couldnÃ¢â‚¬â„¢t score late to tie the game.
Ã¢â‚¬Å“I have to look at myself first. There were a lot of things I could have done to won this game,Ã¢â‚¬Â he said. Ã¢â‚¬Å“That rollout (on third down), IÃ¢â‚¬â„¢ve got to get the first down or get in the end zone.
Ã¢â‚¬Å“Anytime yo lose at home, or lose period, it is tough. There is no doubt this game was different from any other game we played al year because of what it means to players and fans. You hear about it all week. The Cat Walk (before the game) was great. This is a special game and I just didnÃ¢â‚¬â„¢t play very well and make enough plays to help my team win.Ã¢â‚¬Â
Newton was so shaken after the game that he said he couldnÃ¢â‚¬â„¢t Ã¢â‚¬Å“look at the seniorsÃ¢â‚¬Â or remember what defensive tackle Corey Peters said to him as they walked off the field together.
Ã¢â‚¬Å“This is tough on me. I am supposed to be the team leader and I let them down,Ã¢â‚¬Â Newton said. Ã¢â‚¬Å“We were not able to seize a huge opportunity in front of us and it was my fault.Ã¢â‚¬Â
He said not to blame running back Derrick Locke for not sustaining his block long enough on the crucial third down run even though Joker Phillips, UKÃ¢â‚¬â„¢s head coach of the offense, said Locke didnÃ¢â‚¬â„¢t execute the block as he should have.
Ã¢â‚¬Å“In hindsight, I would love to have that play over to see what more I could have done,Ã¢â‚¬Â Newton said. Ã¢â‚¬Å“The coaches made the call and had faith in me to get the job done. ThatÃ¢â‚¬â„¢s my fault for not doing it.Ã¢â‚¬Â
Phillips said he admired Cobb for being so hard on himself, but didnÃ¢â‚¬â„¢t want him to feel like it was his fault UK lost.
Ã¢â‚¬Å“I like the fact he is hard on himself, but I donÃ¢â‚¬â„¢t want him to beat himself up,Ã¢â‚¬Â Phillips said. Ã¢â‚¬Å“Our kids all played hard. HeÃ¢â‚¬â„¢s 18 and playing in his sixth college game. He gave his all. HeÃ¢â‚¬â„¢s done all we have asked of him. HeÃ¢â‚¬â„¢s matured and improved. HeÃ¢â‚¬â„¢s going to be fine.Ã¢â‚¬Â
Randall Cobb, UKÃ¢â‚¬â„¢s most versatile playmaker, consoled Newton after the Mississippi State loss. He planned to do the same thing again, especially since he also lost a fumble and couldnÃ¢â‚¬â„¢t get the ball in the end zone when he had chances on the final drive in regulation.
Ã¢â‚¬Å“Morgan has to refocus and get ready to play in a bowl game now. It was a bad loss for all of us, but he has to move on and not look back,Ã¢â‚¬Â Cobb said.
For Newton, thatÃ¢â‚¬â„¢s not easy to do.
Ã¢â‚¬Å“I did not come here to place blame on anybody else,Ã¢â‚¬Â Newton said. Ã¢â‚¬Å“I look at myself and know there are a lot of things I could have done to win this game. ThatÃ¢â‚¬â„¢s why thereÃ¢â‚¬â„¢s no way for me not to blame myself for the loss.Ã¢â‚¬Â
By LARRY VAUGHT
By KEITH TAYLOR
LEXINGTON Ã¢â‚¬â€ Randall Cobb wanted to beat Tennessee.
Although defeating the Volunteers would have given him bragging rights for the next 12 months, Cobb, a graduate of Alcoa High School near Knoxville, wanted nothing more than to carry the Wildcats to a second-place finish in the Eastern division of the Southeastern Conference.
Cobb said ending the teamÃ¢â‚¬â„¢s 24-game losing streak to the Volunteers was a concern, but not a priority.
Ã¢â‚¬Å“That didnÃ¢â‚¬â„¢t mean anything to me throughout the game,Ã¢â‚¬Â he said. Ã¢â‚¬Å“We wanted to go out there and play for our seniors tonight. We went out there and gave it all we had. We just have to make sure we eliminate those turnovers.Ã¢â‚¬Â
Cobb shouldered part of the blame following the WildcatsÃ¢â‚¬â„¢ heartbreaking 30-24 overtime loss to Tennessee in the regular season finale for both teams Saturday night at Commonwealth Stadium.
KentuckyÃ¢â‚¬â„¢s sensational playmaker led the team with 101 yards rushing, and a touchdown and finished with 186 all-purpose yards. But a fumble by Cobb in the third quarter on KentuckyÃ¢â‚¬â„¢s second possession of the second half led to a go-ahead 30-yard field goal, giving the Volunteers a 24-21 advantage.
The turnover resulted in a momentum shift that tiled in TennesseeÃ¢â‚¬â„¢s favor.
Ã¢â‚¬Å“(My turnover) was big in the second half and that set them up for a field goal,Ã¢â‚¬Â Cobb said. Ã¢â‚¬Å“ThatÃ¢â‚¬â„¢s the one thing we have eliminated in (the) close games the past month.Ã¢â‚¬Â
The miscue by Cobb came after Tennessee tied the score at 21-21 on Luke StockerÃ¢â‚¬â„¢s 16-yard touchdown pass from Jonathan Crompton with 3:28 left in the third quarter.
Although Kentucky booted a field goal that sent the game to overtime, the Cats failed to gain a lengthy dose of momentum.
Like Cobb, Kentucky quarterback Morgan Newton shared the blame for teamÃ¢â‚¬â„¢s fifth setback of the season and second loss in the past seven games.
Ã¢â‚¬Å“ThatÃ¢â‚¬â„¢s what true competitors do,Ã¢â‚¬Â Cobb said of Newton. Ã¢â‚¬Å“I blame myself. If I hadnÃ¢â‚¬â„¢t given them the ball that allowed them to kick the field goal – who knows where the game would have been. Morgan is just like me, he is hard on himself.Ã¢â‚¬Â
Cobb cramped up following the first half and had an IV treatment at the break. Brooks said Cobb Ã¢â‚¬Å“was pretty worn outÃ¢â‚¬Â as the game progressed.
As for his lack of production down the stretch, Cobb said a big reason for the teamÃ¢â‚¬â„¢s lack of execution and failed to blame it on lack of conditioning.
Ã¢â‚¬Å“You have to execute the play that is called,Ã¢â‚¬Â he said. Ã¢â‚¬Å“We didnÃ¢â‚¬â„¢t do that. The only people you blame are the people on the field. Coach makes the call that he believes will work and it should work if you execute it.Ã¢â‚¬Â
Although the Cats held a 21-14 advantage at the break, Cobb said the Cats Ã¢â‚¬Å“chokedÃ¢â‚¬Â in the last two quarters that led to the VolsÃ¢â‚¬â„¢ successful finish.
Ã¢â‚¬Å“They came out energized and ready, and we didnÃ¢â‚¬â„¢t,Ã¢â‚¬Â he said. Ã¢â‚¬Å“We werenÃ¢â‚¬â„¢t focused.Ã¢â‚¬Â
Brooks said Cobb would have liked nothing more than a win over his home state team, but said CobbÃ¢â‚¬â„¢s contributions throughout the season put Kentucky to compete in the postseason for the fourth straight year.
Ã¢â‚¬Å“IÃ¢â‚¬â„¢m sure he was disappointed as we all are,Ã¢â‚¬Â he said. Ã¢â‚¬Å“He had a major impact getting us into the position that we were in going into this game. He made a lot of plays throughout the season in key situations to get us here.Ã¢â‚¬Â
In a season that could have ended in a low note, Cobb carried the Cats in desperate times that led to memorable wins at Auburn, Vanderbilt and Georgia, putting a premium on the teamÃ¢â‚¬â„¢s home finale.
Ã¢â‚¬Å“RandallÃ¢â‚¬â„¢s just been unbelievable,Ã¢â‚¬Â Brooks said. Ã¢â‚¬Å“HeÃ¢â‚¬â„¢s made play after play after play.Ã¢â‚¬Â
But the Cats came up one play short in a game that would have made a difference in the teamÃ¢â‚¬â„¢s climb up the bowl ladder.
KENTUCKY POSTGAME NOTES
Final Score: Tennessee 30, Kentucky 24 (OT)
November 28, 2009 * Commonwealth Stadium, Lexington, Ky.
Team Records and Series Notes
- Kentucky is 7-5 overall, 3-5 in the Southeastern Conference.Ã‚Â Tennessee is 7-5 overall, 4-4 in league play.
- Tennessee leads the series, 73-23-9.Ã‚Â The Volunteers have won 25 in a row.
- UK is now 2-4 all-time in overtime games; 2-3 in overtime games at Commonwealth Stadium.
- The last overtime game UK played was two years ago in Lexington (11/24/07), also against Tennessee. The Volunteers won the game in four overtimes 52-50.
- Attendance for tonightÃ¢â‚¬â„¢s game was 70,981, the sixth-largest crowd in Commonwealth Stadium history.
- Kentucky set the season attendance record for the third-consecutive year.Ã‚Â UK averaged 69,594 per game.Ã‚Â The previous record was 69,434 fans per game in 2008.
- Senior Day ceremonies were held before the game, honoring 27 Wildcats.
- Next for Kentucky: the Wildcats await a bowl bid, which would be a school-record fourth-consecutive bowl game.
UK Team Notes
- Kentucky has a 15-10 record in the last 25 games decided by 10 points or less.
- The last Kentucky player to return an interception for a TD prior to Sam MaxwellÃ¢â‚¬â„¢s 56-yarder was Randall Burden vs. ULM on Oct. 24, 2009 earlier this season.
- Kentucky has returned three Ã¢â‚¬Å“picks for sixÃ¢â‚¬Â this season which is the most since returning three interceptions for TDs in 1974.
- UK has intercepted a pass in eight straight games and 10 of 12 contests this season.
- Kentucky has scored at least 20 points in 11 of its 12 games this season, matching a mark set in the 1998 season.
- UK went 3-of-3 from the red zone in the game, scoring three touchdowns. On the year, UK has converted 36 of 43 opportunities (83.7 percent) this season for 231 points (31 touchdowns, seven field goals, three missed field goals, three loss on downs, two turnovers one end of half).
- 1st Quarter Summary
- UKÃ¢â‚¬â„¢s Sam Maxwell intercepted UTÃ¢â‚¬â„¢s Jonathan Crompton for a 56-yd TD (10:41);
- It was the sixth interception for Maxwell this season and first TD of his career
- Maxwell now has seven career interceptions, including 4 in the last 5 games. UK 7, UT 0
- UTÃ¢â‚¬â„¢s Jonathan Crompton completed a 30-yd pass to Gerald Jones (10:21)
- UTÃ¢â‚¬â„¢s Denarius Moore rushed for 21 yards (9:45)
- UTÃ¢â‚¬â„¢s Montario Hardesty rushed for a nine yard TD (9:34); UK 7, UT 7
- UKÃ¢â‚¬â„¢s Randall Cobb converted a 4th and 1 at the UT 31 with a 3-yd rush (2:33)
- UKÃ¢â‚¬â„¢s Randall Cobb rushed for a 17-yard TD (0:07); UK 14, UT 7
- It was CobbÃ¢â‚¬â„¢s 10th rushing touchdown this season and 17th of his career
- 2nd Quarter Summary
- UKÃ¢â‚¬â„¢s John Conner rushed for 17 yards to the UK 46 on 3rd and 1 (12:09)
- UKÃ¢â‚¬â„¢s Ryan Tydlacka punted for 46 yards to the UT 4 yard line (11:08)
- UKÃ¢â‚¬â„¢s Randall Cobb completed a 31-yd pass to Chris Matthews (9:13)
- UTÃ¢â‚¬â„¢s Wes Brown caused a fumble by UKÃ¢â‚¬â„¢s Morgan Newton at the UT 34 (7:29)
- UTÃ¢â‚¬â„¢s Jonathan Crompton completed an 18-yd pass to Denarius Moore (5:52)
- UTÃ¢â‚¬â„¢s Montario Hardesty rushed for a 14-yd TD (3:54); UK 14, UT 14
- It was Hardesty Ã¢â‚¬Ëœsecond rushing TD of the game
- UKÃ¢â‚¬â„¢s Randall Cobb returned the kickoff 43 yards to the UT 40
- UKÃ¢â‚¬â„¢s Morgan Newton completed a 15-yd screen pass to Derrick Locke to the UT 7 (1:04)
- UKÃ¢â‚¬â„¢s Derrick Locke rushed for a 1-yd TD (0:39); UK 21, UT 14
- It was the sixth rushing TD of the season for Locke and the 12th of his career
- UTÃ¢â‚¬â„¢s Devin Mathis missed a 49-yard field goal (0:03)
- 3rd Quarter Summary
- UTÃ¢â‚¬â„¢s Jonathan Crompton completed a 39-yd pass to Gerald Jones to the UK 9 (11:48)
- UTÃ¢â‚¬â„¢s Jonathan Crompton was stopped on 4th and goal from the UK 1 (10:11)
- UKÃ¢â‚¬â„¢s Corey Peters made the tackle on the goal-line stop
- UTÃ¢â‚¬â„¢s Jonathan Crompton passed for a 16-yd TD to Luke Stocker (3:40); UK 21, UT 21
- UTÃ¢â‚¬â„¢s Rico McCoy caused a fumble by UKÃ¢â‚¬â„¢s Randall Cobb at the UK 28 (3:21)
- UTÃ¢â‚¬â„¢s Devin Mathis made a 30-yard field goal (0:44); UT 24, UK 21
- 4th Quarter Summary
- UTÃ¢â‚¬â„¢s Janzen Jackson sacked UKÃ¢â‚¬â„¢s Morgan Newton for a loss of 11 (12:38)
- UKÃ¢â‚¬â„¢s Ashton Cobb caused a fumble by UTÃ¢â‚¬â„¢s Luke Stocker which was recovered by UKÃ¢â‚¬â„¢s Taylor Wyndham at the UT 37-yard line (2:21)
- UKÃ¢â‚¬â„¢s Lones Seiber connected on a 23-yard field goal (0:33); UK 24, UT 24
- End of regulation; UK 24, UT 24
- 1st Overtime Summary
- Wildcats started on offense.
- UKÃ¢â‚¬â„¢s Lones Seiber missed a 49-yard field goal wide left.
- UTÃ¢â‚¬â„¢s Montario Hardesty rushed for a 20-yard touchdown. UT 30, UK 24
UK Individual Notes
- Locke gained 22 yards and on the ground and rushed for a touchdown in the game. He now has 1,667 yards in his career and ranks 13th on the all-time rushing list. He needs 20 more to tie Ivy Joe Hunter (1985-88) for 12th place.
- Micah Johnson totaled a career-high 16 tackles, giving him six double-digit performances this season and 10 for his career.
- JohnsonÃ¢â‚¬â„¢s 16-tackle effort is the most by a Wildcat since Wesley Woodyard posted 17 tackles against Arkansas two seasons ago (9/22/07).
- Randall Cobb has scored 15 touchdowns this season and at least one TD in 14 of 22 career games. Cobb has scored a touchdown in the last eight games he has played in this season.
- Cobb rushed for 101 yards on 18 carries to lead the team and ran for a touchdown. It marked his second career game over 100 yards on the ground.
- Cobb led the Cats in receiving with four catches totaling 24 yards and also completed a 31-yard pass to Chris Matthews in the second quarter.
- Sam MaxwellÃ¢â‚¬â„¢s sixth pick of the season tied him for third all-time for interceptions in a season.
- Trevard Lindley made a season-high seven tackles in his final game at Commonwealth Stadium.
- Taylor Wyndham recovered his first career fumble in the fourth quarter that led to UKÃ¢â‚¬â„¢s game-tying drive.
- DeQuin Evans made two tackles-for-loss tonight, including a sack. Evans leads the team in both categories with six sacks and 12.5 TFL this season.
By LARRY VAUGHT
LEXINGTON Ã¢â‚¬â€ Kentucky was so close to the historic win it desperately wanted.
Given a chance to end a 24-game losing streak to Tennessee, the Wildcats couldnÃ¢â‚¬â„¢t do it. Instead, they settled for a field goal with 33 seconds left here Saturday night that tied the score 24-24 and then, just as every Kentucky-Tennessee game has ended since 1984, the Vols won.
This time it came when Kentucky lost six yards on three plays in overtime and missed a 48-yard field goal and then watched Tennessee overcome a 10-yard holding penalty to score on Montario HardestyÃ¢â‚¬â„¢s 20-yard run and win 30-24.
Instead of a victory, the Cats were left thinking about what might have been as senior linebacker Micah Johnson knelt stunned midfield, senior defensive tackle Corey Peters walked off the field with his arm around freshman quarterback Morgan Newton, and versatile Randall Cobb had to try to stay congenial as he talked to the many, many Tennessee players he knew since he grew up just outside Knoxville.
Ã¢â‚¬Å“We laid down the second half and they came out energized,Ã¢â‚¬Â said Cobb, who ran for 101 yards and had 186 all-purpose yards. Ã¢â‚¬Å“I canÃ¢â‚¬â„¢t say for sure what happened.Ã¢â‚¬Â
Ã¢â‚¬Å“I am just telling you the truth. We came out flat the second halfÃ‚Â and did not match their intensity. We wanted to get off to a fast start. We have been a great second half team, but tonight they dominated us,Ã¢â‚¬Â Cobb said.
The Vols did that and only a gallant goal-line stand in the third quarter kept the game from turning into a rout. Still, Tennessee turned a 21-14 halftime deficit into a 24-21 lead and was set to win the game before tight end Luke Stocker of Berea fumbled after a reception when he was hit by Ashton Cobb.
That gave UK the ball at the Tennessee 37-yard line with 2:21 left. Cobb ran for 13, 9, 2 and 3 yards out of the Wildcat formation to put the ball at the 10-yard line with 1:16 left. A touchdown would have given UK a second-place finish in the Southeastern Conference Eastern Division for the first time with a 4-4 record and likely a berth in the Outback Bowl Jan. 1.
However, UK went back to its traditional offense with Newton at quarterback because coach Rich Brooks says the Cats canÃ¢â‚¬â„¢t manage Ã¢â‚¬Å“a two-minute offenseÃ¢â‚¬Â out of the Wildcat. Derrick Locke gained two yards and then Newton rolled right on the crucial third-and-five play. Locke tried to sustain his block, but couldnÃ¢â‚¬â„¢t and Newton gained only two yards.
Ã¢â‚¬Å“I thought the play was wide open,Ã¢â‚¬Â Joker Phillips, UKÃ¢â‚¬â„¢s head coach of the offense, said. Ã¢â‚¬Å“I thought we would walk in the way they lined up. We just did not execute the block on the perimeter. If Cobb was running and we donÃ¢â‚¬â„¢t sustain it, it might have been different. But that was not the play. We had all the momentum and a chance to win the game and didnÃ¢â‚¬â„¢t.Ã¢â‚¬Â
Rather than gamble on fourth down at the six-yard line, Brooks sent Lones Seiber on to kick the field goal to tie the game.
Brooks admitted he would have liked to have gone for the win, but not from six yards out.
Ã¢â‚¬Å“If it would have been less than a yard (for the first down) maybe, but not three yards. We made it pretty difficult,Ã¢â‚¬Â Brooks said.
They made it even worse by botching their overtime possession. Moncell Allen couldnÃ¢â‚¬â„¢t hold on to NewtonÃ¢â‚¬â„¢s swing pass, Locke was stopped for a 6-yard loss and NewtonÃ¢â‚¬â„¢s third-down pass to Chris Matthews in coverage was incomplete.
Good-bye victory. Good-bye Outback Bowl.
Kentucky was probably lucky to be close and should remember that when it finds out what bowl game it will be in. Tennessee had 17 plays of 10 or more yards. The Cats lost two fumbles Ã¢â‚¬â€ one each by Cobb and Newton. The Cats were penalized six times for 64 yards and lost valuable field position.
Kentucky got one score when linebacker Sam Maxwell returned an interception 56 yards for a score, but had only 261 yards of total offense, including just 74 yards in the second half.
Ã¢â‚¬Å“We knew TennesseeÃ¢â‚¬â„¢s defense was good and would give us a variety of looks. Morgan did not throw as well as he has in past games. He overthrew some guys that were open,Ã¢â‚¬Â Brooks said. Ã¢â‚¬Å“We had some breakdowns in pass protection. It makes it very difficult when you canÃ¢â‚¬â„¢t throw it efficiently.
Ã¢â‚¬Å“YouÃ¢â‚¬â„¢ve got to give Tennessee credit. They came out in second half and dominated. They took the fight to us and we did not respond very well. They made plays and we didnÃ¢â‚¬â„¢t.Ã¢â‚¬Â
And thatÃ¢â‚¬â„¢s why as they always do when they play, Tennessee won and Kentucky didnÃ¢â‚¬â„¢t.
Editor’s note: Thought you might enjoy this story about Louisville firing Steve Kragthorpe because who the Cards hire could impact UK’s football fortunes. The more successful Louisville is, the tougher in-state recruiting is for Kentucky and not beating the Cards makes going to a bowl game much, much more difficult.
By WILL GRAVES
AP Sports Writer
LOUISVILLE (AP) Ã¢â‚¬â€ Louisville athletic director Tom Jurich needed less than 48 hours to hire Steve Kragthorpe nearly three years ago, confident the coach who turned around the moribund program at Tulsa could keep the surging Cardinals atop the Big East.
The honeymoon lasted until the fourth quarter of KragthorpeÃ¢â‚¬â„¢s first game.
Three seasons, zero bowl games, 21 losses and thousands of empty seats at Cardinal Stadium later, Jurich knew it was time to move on.
Ã¢â‚¬Å“It just didnÃ¢â‚¬â„¢t seem like the right fit from Day One,Ã¢â‚¬Â Jurich said Saturday, shortly after firing Kragthorpe following a 4-8 season, the programÃ¢â‚¬â„¢s worst in over a decade.
Kragthorpe went 15-21 in three seasons after replacing the massively successful Bobby Petrino in January 2007. He had two years remaining on a contract that paid him about $1.1 annually, and Jurich said Kragthorpe will receive a $2.2 million buyout.
ItÃ¢â‚¬â„¢s an expensive parting gift, but one Jurich felt necessary after watching the Cardinals slip from national title contenders to Big East also-rans. The Cardinals went 5-16 in conference play under Kragthorpe and perhaps even worse, failed to beat rival Kentucky in three attempts.
Ã¢â‚¬Å“I was hoping weÃ¢â‚¬â„¢d get over the hump this year,Ã¢â‚¬Â Jurich said. Ã¢â‚¬Å“I thought we could get through the year and really build some momentum and obviously that didnÃ¢â‚¬â„¢t happen.Ã¢â‚¬Â
Kragthorpe declined comment on Saturday but is expected to speak publicly on Monday.
The search for his replacement will begin immediately. The list of candidates could include Houston coach Kevin Sumlin, Florida defensive coordinator Charlie Strong and former Tennessee coach Phil Fulmer.
Ã¢â‚¬Å“I want to get a great leader of men and somebody that will take us to the heights we want to be at,Ã¢â‚¬Â Jurich said.
Finding someone who can sell tickets wouldnÃ¢â‚¬â„¢t hurt either.
A crowd of 23,422 turned out for a 34-14 loss to Rutgers on Friday. Several fans brought homemade signs voicing their displeasure with the direction of the program while others wore paper bags over their heads.
Even worse were the number of fans who didnÃ¢â‚¬â„¢t show up at all.
Louisville averaged just over 32,000 at the 42,000-seat stadium, down from more than 41,000 during PetrinoÃ¢â‚¬â„¢s last season. With Cardinal Stadium expanding to 55,000 seats in time for the 2010 opener against Kentucky, KragthorpeÃ¢â‚¬â„¢s inability to connect with the Louisville fan base became painfully obvious.
Ã¢â‚¬Å“For everything he did in his life, he got hammered for,Ã¢â‚¬Â Jurich said. Ã¢â‚¬Å“I donÃ¢â‚¬â„¢t think there was anything right he could do.Ã¢â‚¬Â
Despite the outside pressure, Kragthorpe remained popular with his players. Nearly two dozen left or were asked to leave as part of a locker room purge during his first 18 months on the job, which led to better unity on the sidelines, if not between the lines.
Ã¢â‚¬Å“Even though we didnÃ¢â‚¬â„¢t have the wins that we wanted, Coach K was a great coach,Ã¢â‚¬Â said junior wide receiver Doug Beaumont. Ã¢â‚¬Å“He showed us more than just the life of football. He showed us the life outside of football (and) our character off the field.Ã¢â‚¬Â
But he was unable to find any sustained success on it.
His stay began with a top-10 ranking and whispers of a national title shot after Kragthorpe helped persuade star quarterback Brian Brohm to return for his senior season.
By the fourth quarter of his first game against Murray State, fans were already restless. They booed when the Cardinals decided to settle for a field goal while up 70-10 rather than tack on another meaningless touchdown.
Louisville quickly tumbled from the rankings following a last-second loss to Kentucky in his third game on the job and finished 6-6 that season. The Cardinals started 5-2 last year before losing their last five games, including a nationally televised 63-14 loss to Rutgers.