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Kentucky Wildcat Football – Know Your Enemy: Louisville Cardinals



SEPTEMBER 17, 2011, 7:00 PM






9/4/2010:  KENTUCKY  23  Louisville 16

9/19/2009:  KENTUCKY  31  Louisville 27

8/31/2008:  KENTUCKY  27  Louisville 2

09/15/2007:  KENTUCKY  40  Louisville  34

09/3/2006:  Louisville  59  KENTUCKY  28

The Cats will face off against the UL Cardinals this weekend in their annual in-state rivalry game. The
Cats have won four straight in the series and will look to extend that streak but will have to come out
stronger than they have the first two games, which saw them fall behind inferior opponents in Western
Kentucky and Central Michigan. UL will be a step up from these two teams even though they are
coming off a loss to Florida International. Here are some offensive stats for both teams through their
first two games:

Total defense – 35th (308.5 ypg)
Yards per play allowed – 22nd (4.2 ypp)
Turnovers forced – 11th (6)
Total offense – 110th (267 ypg)
Yards per play – 87th (5.0 ypp)
Turnovers lost – 98th (5)

Player Stats – QB Morgan Newton ranks 67th in TD passes (2), 90th in yards per attempt (5.9). Does
not rank in the top 100 in yards per game (105.5), completion percentage (44.4), interceptions (4) or
QB rating (89.78).

LB Danny Trevathan ranks fourth in tackles (26) and 24th in tackles for loss (3.5). LB/S Winston Guy
ranks second in interceptions (2), 10th in tackles (23) and 73rd in tackles for loss (2.5). DE Collins
Ukwu ranks 39th in tackles for loss (3).

WR La’Rod King ranks 20th in TD catches (20) and 72nd in receiving yards (142). RB Josh Clemons
ranks 47th in rushing yards (165), 48th in rushing TD (2) and 53rd in yards per carry (6.6). He ranks
fourth among freshman running backs in yardage.

P Ryan Tydlacka ranks 10th in average (47.8 ypp). K Joe Mansour ranks 13th in kickoff touchback
percentage (44.4 percent)

Total defense – 33rd (292.0 ypg)
Yards per play allowed – 29th (4.5 ypp)
Turnovers forced – 52nd (3)
Total offense – 48th (415.5 ypg)
Yards per play – 75th (5.3 ypp)
Turnovers lost – 109th (6)

Player Stats– QB Will Stein ranks 17th in yards per game (287.5), 32nd in TD passes (4), 46th in
yards per attempt (7.7), 48th in QB rating (142.0), 50th in completion percentage (62.7).

LB Dexter Heyman ranks 24th in tackles for loss (3.5) and 48th in tackles (18).

TE Josh Chichester ranks 55th in yards per catch (18.75) and 65th in receiving yards (150).

WR Michaelee Harris ranks 85th in yards per catch (16.57).

K Chris Philpott ranks 15th in kickoff touchback percentage (42.86 percent). WR Scott Radcliff ranks
30th in punt return average (10.33 ypr).

RB’s Victor Anderson and Jeremy Wright have split carries to combine for 175 yards on 3.5 ypc. Don’t let those numbers deceive you, as both of these backs are capable of breaking of long runs when given proper blocking and do a good job of carrying piles forward when gang tackled. UK will have to wrap up well to contain them.

QB Will Stein leads the Cardinals’ passing game, which ranks 22nd in the nation with 294 ypg. He is
deadly when given time, but against pressure makes bad throws, but never seems to lose confidence. Is
a threat to run. He’s one of 75 QBs who’ve thrown one or fewer interceptions, so again, he’ll pick UK
apart if given time. His primary target is TE Josh Chichester, but freshman WR Michaelee Harris has
emerged as a legitimate threat after posting 6 catches for 79 yards and a TD against FIU last week.

Players to watch on defense: MLB Dextar Heyman

UL uses its blitz schemes well to free up MLB Dexter Heyman so he can bring pressure up the middle.
If UK starting center Max Smith is out again, Heyman may be in Newton’s face all game long. He also
covers the field well.

Players to watch on offense: QB Will Stein
The former walk-on has been an efficient passer when given protection and time to throw. Does very
good at finding the open receiver when given chance to read the defense, but when faced with pressure, will try to force throws and make bad decisions. Stein is tough and when things are going bad, he never loses confidence. He’s one of 75 QBs who’ve thrown one or fewer interceptions, so again, he’ll pick UK apart if given time. He is also a threat to run the ball and has descent speed. The key to the game will be how much pressure UK can get on Stein. Last week against CM, the Cats were unable to consistently pressure QB Ryan Radcliffe and Stein is a better QB.

Other Notable Stats

Louisville is allowing 16.5 points per game, but against the only division I school they’ve played (FIU), they allowed 27 points.

Louisville has allowed opponents to convert 15-34 3rd plays for 44%.

Biggest weakness: Offensive line- UL’s o-line has been inept through their first two games. They are
breaking in five new starters, so experience is not something the Cards have in this position. They
will commit a lot of penalties and their center has issues snapping the ball low. They are also poorly
conditioned and by the 4th quarter against FIU, unblocked defenders were getting to Stein on almost

on their defensive line and should be able to tee-off on Stein in the fourth quarter when UL’s lack of
depth really comes into play.

Other Notable Weaknesses:

In their first two games, Louisville has sacked opponents 3 times. UK’s battered o-line should be able
to find some consistency against UL’s undersized d-line.  This team is also very young and their football IQ is very low. They are prone to mistakes, whether they be penalties, or fielding a punt on their own 1-yard line.

Overall, this team has a good QB, decent WR corps, a good pair of RB’s, and a decent defense. O-line
is a horrible weakness on this team which makes this team an under .500 team in the Big East.

Prediction:The scariest part of this game might be that UK hosts SEC rival Florida next week, and in this exact
situation 2 years ago, UK took a vastly undermanned UL team lightly, and barely pulled out a 31-27
win. I believe UK will come out focused, but if they don’t, they’ll be in for a long day of Stein picking
them apar and Heyman blowing up plays in the backfield. I predict UK will control UL with their
running game and contain UL’s offense enough to grind out a defensive win, 27-21.

Paul Jordan:  I have to disagree a bit with Jason.  I think UK will come out focused and ready to prove that the last two weeks were in part, a fluke.  Even wihout Raymond Sanders, Kentucky will establish the running game early with Josh Clemons.  I also look for UK to be very aggressive on offense and defense from the start.  Look for Newton to test UL’s secondary deep several times and for UK to attack that Cardinal offensive line.  While Louisville has talenat, it is very young and has not been on the road yet.  And for a rivalry game, Commonwealth can be an imposing venue.  I think that Kentucky will redeem itself for the first two weeks with a 28-14 victory. 

Great job to Jason Marcum as he did 99.99999% of this preview. 

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