By now you've gotten the most comprehensive coverage of our..."/>

By now you've gotten the most comprehensive coverage of our..."/>

Kentucky Wildcat Football: Zach's 2011 Season Prediction


By now you’ve gotten the most comprehensive coverage of our beloved football team’s ranks and have seen what we look like individually, but what about as a unit? Everyone knows that in order for a team to be effective, all the pieces must come together to form a cohesive unit. So how will this team, and by extension this season, do when they run out onto the field this Thursday?

Sept. 1- Western Kentucky University Hilltoppers (N)
First game of the year, playing on a neutral field, against one of the more electrifying football players in this state. RB Bobby Rainey will undoubtedly be the focal point and their key to staying in this game, but this will be a good game for the defense to test their new look at a game speed as they only need to contain one player. QB Kawaun Jakes returns but playmakers are thin in Bowling Green, KY. Cats take this one easy with a less-than-expected crowd in LP field.
UK- 42 WKU-24

Sept. 10- Central Michigan Chippewas (H)
The school that produced first round tackle Joe Staley and QB Dan LeFevour comes down to the Bluegrass in what will be the first Saturday unveiling of the new video boards and the first home football game of the season. Despite producing the two previously mentioned football players the offensive will be largely one-dimensional, but the retooled secondary should get their first real test here with QB Ryan Radcliff coming into Commonwealth after throwing for more than 3300 yards last season. Still, one dimension won’t cut it against an SEC opponent.
UK- 35 CMU- 10

Sept. 17- Louisville Cardinals (H)
In Joker’s first tone setting game of the season, both he and Strong must avoid the label of the sophomore slump, and Strong has to do it in unfriendly territory. Leading rusher Bilal Powell has gone to the NFL but RB Victor Anderson now has the reins and will try to recapture the excitement that surrounded him when he walked on campus four years ago. This rivalry has cooled in recent years because of the one-sided nature of the scores, but this game has rarely been easy for the Cats and you can expect some resistance from the Dirty River Birds. You can also expect some urban acting douches in the parking lot.
UK-28 UL-20

Sept. 24- Florida Gators (H)
Yes, they have a new coach. They don’t have the usually “so deep it’s stupid” roster. But they still have some serious skill. World class burner Jeff Demps came back for another season, but there are question marks that lurk underneath many of their positions. Despite Janoris Jenkins leaving the team before the season after deciding that smoking a blunt of weed in a park was a good option, the secondary still has players that can make incredible plays. On the offensive side of the ball, QB John Brantley might finally have a playbook that isn’t designed around Tim Tebow and has game experience under his belt. Part of me feels like we just don’t have the firepower to keep up, but only by a hair
UK-28 UF- 31

Oct. 1- Louisiana State Tigers (A)
Despite looking like a special on an episode of Campus Cops, LSU is still a dangerous team. The dark horse national champion contender has had a string of arrests this off season and will assuredly deplete their ranks a bit, but their talent will allow them to compete with anyone. Still, Kentucky rests in the third week of a brutal stretch in which they are only one of three unranked teams they play in the first nine weeks. (Northwestern State and Tennessee are the other two). What if LSU looked over the Cats in such a way that we could pull off a win in Death Valley? The Cats are always good for one conference road win a year and with all the turmoil on that team mixed up with a nasty schedule, it would make this season an instant success for Joker.
UK-34- LSU-31

Oct. 8- South Carolina Gamecocks (A)
In making my bold upset of the year prediction, I also acknowledge that there will be some disappointments this season. There is no more Randall Cobb to magic us through another miracle win against the Fightin’ Visors, and two of the most exciting players in the SEC are another year older and stronger. Alshon Jeffery will pluck at least one incredible catch out of the sky and if the defensive line isn’t up to top-notch form by then, Marcus Lattimore will run roughshod all over us again.
UK- 17 USC- 28

Oct. 22- Jacksonville State Gamecocks (H)
In a name-rematch game, the second set of Gamecocks will be much easier to defeat than the first. The OVC team will put up as much of a fight as they can, but it’s not SEC talent and the Cats should roll through with ease.
UK- 49 JSU-16

Oct. 29- Mississippi St. Bulldogs (H)
When you have QB Chris Relph and all-star RB Vick Ballard in the backfield, there will some excitement for the Maroon. That’s the bad news. The good news is they’re replacing three starting linebackers and we have one of the best lines in the conference. If we can get the running game going against the bulldogs from the west, there will be very good results against a team that the Cats have traditionally had trouble against at home. If not, then we have another game that should have been pulled out.
UK- 38 MSU-42

Nov. 5- Ole Miss Black Bears Rebels (H)
This was a bad one last year. I’m not going to mention any more of that because my head started hurting writing about, but this is not the team we played last year. Former convict turned SEC quarterback Jeremiah Masoli is gone, but RB Brandon Bolden almost rushed for 1000 yards last season and returns looking to break that mark. Still, there wont be enough on the bus coming from Oxford
UK-28 Miss-21

Nov. 12- Vanderbilt Commodores (A)
In what is tradition the battle for the bottom of the barrel in the SEC East, the Cats have maintained their dominance over the nerdy brother in the SEC. Still, this game should be considered an automatic by this point and given all of the coaching changes in Nashville, it will be hard to say that Vandy will put up a fight. Warren Norman will be a bright spot in their offense, but that spot ain’t too bright.
UK-41 Vandy- 17

Nov. 19- Georgia Bulldogs (A)
One of the most embattled teams in the SEC over the offseason, questions of whether or not Mark Richt is on the hot seat have been raised several times since the last horn of the 2010 was blown. Richt responded by bringing in another top recruiting class and deciding to wear the most godawful Nike combat uniforms on opening day. Still, I don’t see another crazy upset happening like it did two years ago.
UK-13 UGA- 24

Nov. 26- Tennessee Volunteers (H)
I’m swallowing bile as I write this. This is Armageddon. D-day. Another year approaches and the thought of losing to those people down south makes me sick. Derek Dooley enters his sophomore year as well and his team seems to slowly be improving but weaknesses are still there due to the football teams cooperation with local law enforcement in their “host a football player in jail” promotion. I have to hope, pray, that this streak will end. For everyone in my family’s sake and the sake of alcohol supplies this Thanksgiving, we need this one
UK- 31 UT-21

Final Season record: 8-4

Keep following www. for the best in Kentucky basketball and football news, rumors, and opinions. By Kentucky fans for Kentucky fans