Most Recent Posts
- 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
- Video: Larry hears cowbells, makes a chocolate cow and soaks up the culture in Switzerland
- Video: UK offensive coordinator Neal Brown talks about recruiting the home state of Kentucky
- What role did Drew Barker’s mother play in his athletic development?
- Calipari will be keynote speaker at Iba Awards June 3 in Tulsa
VaughtÃ¢â‚¬â„¢s note: David Hopewell, a starting center on UKÃ¢â‚¬â„¢s 1976-78 teams, offers his insights on SaturdayÃ¢â‚¬â„¢s game at Mississippi. He also joins me each Thursday from 6:30-7:30 p.m. on our radio show at Eddie MontgomeryÃ¢â‚¬â„¢s Steakhouse in Harrodsburg on WHIR (1230 AM) and WHBN (1420 AM). You can also hear and see the show live here thanks to Gary MoyerÃ¢â‚¬â„¢s live stream from the restaurant.
By DAVID HOPEWELL
Before I begin, letÃ¢â‚¬â„¢s pause for a moment of silence for UK & NFL great George Blanda. He passed away 9/27/2010 at the age of 83. He started his NFL career in 1949 and ended it in 1975. WOW!Ã‚Â What a stretch.
I saw George Blanda come in as a back-up QB when he was well into his 40s (he was primarily the placekicker then but they had everybody get hurt) and he completed passes and won games!Ã‚Â He will always be remembered as a UK great.Ã‚Â And to all my Alabama friends…he played at UK for Ã¢â‚¬Å“The BearÃ¢â‚¬Â!
Here we are again. Last time we won at Ole Miss was the last time I played in a game there Ã¢â‚¬â€ 1978.Ã‚Â I really do hate that.Ã‚Â Yes I am glad we won down there but itÃ¢â‚¬â„¢s sad we have that kind of track record on SEC away games…that is a long time. (We have played them in Oxford/Jackson 5 times since 1978)
And for all you blog readers out there, beating Ole Miss will mean we HAVE beaten someone.Ã‚Â Ole Miss is not the pushover folks lead you to believe and they may have just had their coming out party this past weekend against a pretty good team in Fresno State.
Remember who the head coach was that beat Kentucky in the NCAA record 7 overtimes (70-63) at Commonwealth Stadium in 2003?Ã‚Â Houston Nutt.Ã‚Â HeÃ¢â‚¬â„¢s a pretty good coach/motivator.
What should the UK mindset be this week?Ã‚Â Like Drew Brees said during the Super Bowl Ã¢â‚¬Å“Play one play at a time and the next play is the most important.Ã¢â‚¬ÂÃ‚Â This is a big game but you can only play one play at a time.
Ole Miss has a big run stopper in Jerrell Powe (NT) 6-2,320. He is on Outland, Naguruski and Lombardi Trophy watch lists.Ã‚Â Jonathan Cornell (MLB) 6-1, 235 is their leading tackler and will be big for them. Ole Miss loses DE Kentrell Lockett 6-5, 260 for season with knee injury.Ã‚Â Lockett was on watch list for the Hendricks Award, the best DE in nation.
Their defense may be weakest against the passing game.Ã‚Â They rank 79th in NCAA in pass defense allowing 233 yards/game.Ã‚Â Our passing game is above average and ranked 35th in NCAA, gaining 254 yards/game.Ã‚Â We need Mike Hartline and our receiving corps to really produce this week. Ole Miss is 56th in NCAA & 8th in SEC in total defense.Ã‚Â In total offenseÃ‚Â they are 25th in NCAA & 5th in SEC.
UK must outscore this bunch and do it early to take the crowd out of the game.Ã‚Â I think our balanced offensive attack will be a big benefit this week and then we have to hammer home what is working the best during the game whether itÃ¢â‚¬â„¢s passing or running.Ã‚Â Getting our speed on the corner could help.Ã‚Â After all, they are now missing a star DE they lost to injury last week.
Our vulnerability will be us facing another solid running attack.Ã‚Â UK’s run defense still looked weak against Florida but most teams will!Ã‚Â Hey, they are a top 10 team, remember, and may well finish above that!Ã‚Â This weekend will determine more on that for Florida.
Ole MissÃ¢â‚¬â„¢ Brandon Bolden (5-11, 215) is coming off a 220-plus yard game and they had 400-plus yards on the ground last week.Ã‚Â ThatÃ¢â‚¬â„¢s why we need to get ahead early and stay there, this team will grind it out on you and run the clock.
The much talked about transfer QB, Jeremiah Masoli, will be their second leading rusher.Ã‚Â When he throws he is effective, completing 48 of 77 passes.Ã‚Â ThatÃ¢â‚¬â„¢s 62 percent with 3 touchdowns.Ã‚Â Their big receiver is Markeith Summers with 10 receptions averaging 23 yards/catch, leading the SEC.Ã‚Â Summers did not have a catch last week though.Ã‚Â They only throw about 33 percent of the time.
Did I mention something about not having poor tackling last week?Ã‚Â Well this week … you know.
Our secondary may have some shots at Masoli as he has had five picks!Ã‚Â Nathan Stanley is his solid backup and many in Mississippi would love for him to have the QB job.Ã‚Â If he comes in he is a better passer.
The OL is big up front at 6-6, 6-5, 6-4, 6-8, 6-7 and averaging 310 pounds.Ã‚Â Did I say something about stopping the run?
Ole Miss has a big scoring first half then settles in.Ã‚Â They average 22.25 points in 1st half.Ã‚Â We can not let them score early on us and we need to keep their offense off the field the 1st half.
Keys to victory:
- Stop Ole Miss running attack.
- Special teams come through with a big play or two.
- UK passing attack comes up big.
I believe the early bird gets the worm this week and whoever scores early will hang on for the victory.Ã‚Â Both of these teams have a lot of similarities statistically.Ã‚Â Defense will win this one in the end, but the defense will win it early … does that make sense to you it does to me.
UK 27, Ole Miss 24