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Scoping out the 2010 Kentucky football schedule


By Kyle

Kentucky released it’s official 2010 football schedule, and here’s a quick breakdown for you on a cold, lazy Lexington Sunday.

September 4 – @ Louisville
This should be a Kentucky win. Louisville is well stocked at skill positions, but the offensive and defensive line units are extremely thin. Kentucky should be able to take advantage of a younger team in a new system and spoil Charlie Strong’s first game. This game is extremely important for in-state recruiting.

September 11 – Western Kentucky
This game should be an easy win for the Cats, but it would be unwise to underestimate the Hilltoppers. WKU will have nothing to lose and should be a big underdog against a team that could provide them with a program changing win. Kentucky should still be favored heavily and needs to use this game as an opportunity to get some of the younger players some repetitions before a brutal upcoming stretch.

September 18 – Akron
The Zips will provide another dangerous opportunity for Kentucky to overlook an opponent. The Cats should have an advantage at every position, but the MAC has given them problems in the past. If the defensive backs can protect against big plays, Kentucky’s run game should overpower a smaller Akron team.

September 25 – @ Florida
Kentucky typically struggles in the Swamp, but this year they will get one of the weakest and youngest Florida teams in a long time. The Gators will have to replace several draft picks and will also be adjusting their offense around John Brantley’s abilities after it has revolved around Tebow’s for the last three years. With only Miami(OH), USF, and Tennessee coming up before Kentucky, the Wildcats could be the toughest test at that point in the season. The Cats could also catch Florida looking ahead to the next two weeks when they will play @ Alabama followed by a home game against LSU.

October 2 – @ Ole Miss
Ole Miss could give Kentucky some trouble, or could be an easy win. It will depend on how they progress through their season. A lot of the top players they’ve had in years past are gone and they will be completely restocking the offensive skill positions this year. This should be a pretty evenly matched team and the deciding factor could end up being that it will be a home game for the Rebels.

October 9 – Auburn
Kentucky stunned the Tigers on their home field last year and Auburn may be looking for some revenge. They’ll be replacing Chris Todd with former Florida QB Cam Newton who will be more of a running threat to defenses. This has historically given Kentucky problems, but the increased team speed on the defensive side of the ball should help offset Newton’s abilities. This contest will likely come down to the Kentucky defenses ability to slow down the Auburn rushing attack.

October 16 – South Carolina
None of the losing streaks Kentucky currently has puzzles me more than the losses to South Carolina. The Wildcats have just found ways to lose this game and one has to think that eventually the chips will fall in Kentucky’s favor. This should be one of the tougher South Carolina teams UK has seen in a while and the Gamecocks should be in contention for the SEC east for the first time in Steve Spurrier’s tenure. I think Joker gets it done at home against a team he’s extremely familiar with.

October 23 – Georgia
This game will be the last of a three week home stand for Kentucky. Like Auburn, the Bulldogs will be looking for revenge after Kentucky beat them at home last season. If Georgia is struggling with their transition to a 3-4 defense, Kentucky’s running game could take advantage and have a big night. There’s an outside chance that, if the season is not going well for Georgia at this point, Mark Richt may be under fire and hoping to save his job. This is probably the single biggest game on the schedule for recruiting purposes.

October 30 – @ Mississippi State
The Bulldogs managed to come the Lexington and ruin homecoming for Kentucky last year, but will be without star running back Anthony Dixon this time around. This should be a close game and the deciding factor for the Wildcats might be how far the down-field passing game has developed through the season. The Bulldogs will field an athletic, but young and inexperienced defensive line that could struggle to pressure Kentucky’s QB.

November 6 – Charleston Southern
This will be an important game for Kentucky to heal up some of their starters after the most brutal part of the schedule and get some experience for some younger players. Barring a total melt-down, this should be a game that Kentucky can roll through.

November 13 – Vanderbilt
After a closer than expected game last year, the Commodores should be improved for the 2010 season. A good recruiting class will be added to a roster full of talented but young athletes and Vandy could give some teams some trouble. Kentucky needs to take them seriously and have a good outing to head to their bye week on a good note.

November 27 – @ Tennessee
The streak weighs heavily on most UK football fan’s minds. This might be the best opportunity for Kentucky to break the streak since, well….Last year. With another new coach and several players transferring or bolting for the NFL, The Volunteers will be as vulnerable as they’ve been in a while.

Happy Mother’s day to all.

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