UK football: An early preview of the Akron game.


By Kyle

September 18 – Akron

Kentucky will follow up a game against in-state WKU with a second consecutive home game that they should be favored in against Akron. The Wildcats should be coming into the game on a two week winning streak and will have to be ready against the Zips without overlooking them. The MAC has given Kentucky troubles in the past for whatever reason, and the UK defense will be extremely young, but the Cats should still be heavily favored. Last year, Akron took a different approach than many of the other teams Kentucky faced and used a true “running back by committee” approach with no single player rushing over 250 yards for the year. That may change this year though, with Akron grabbing local RB Erick Howard from Canton, OH. Howard is a high level recruit for a school like Akron and at 5’11 and 210 pounds, he should provide an every down option that the Zips were missing last season. Kentucky will have to use this game as an opportunity to tune up for a tough Florida game without looking past a capable Akron team that should have a much better year in 2010 than their 3-9 campaign last season.

Kentucky will lose if…..
The Wildcats don’t take the Zips seriously. While no one should mistake this Akron team with Ohio State or Cincinnati, they are a Division 1 team with talented skill position players that can run. They’re not as fast as Kentucky’s players, but a broken tackle or two can keep them in the game and give them the confidence to make it closer than it should be. Giving up special teams touchdowns will always hurt a team and Kentucky needs to be better in this area than they were over the past few seasons. If the QB, doesn’t establish a passing game to keep the defense honest, the Zips could load up the box to stop the run and keep themselves in the game.

Why Kentucky will win…..
The Wildcats are just plain better than the Zips at Every position. There probably isn’t a player on Akron’s team that would start for Kentucky and when you have that kind of talent gap, you should win every time. The offensive line should be able to overpower the smaller MAC school’s defense, paving the way for UK’s running backs to have a big game on the ground and rack up some big time numbers. The Kentucky defense is bigger, faster, and stronger than the Akron offense and despite lacking experience, should have an easy time stopping a sup-par offensive attack. The defensive backs should have a field day against Akron QB Patrick Nicely unless he shows significant improvement over his freshman performance last year. As a unit, the three primary Quarterbacks used last season threw 11 touchdowns compared to 13 interceptions and took 26 sacks.
Overall, the only way Kentucky looses this game is if the Wildcats beat themselves. The Zips are outmatched in every facet of the game.

For a breakdown of the Louisville game, go HERE.
For a breakdown of the WKU game, go HERE.

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