Kentucky Football: Cardiac Cats remain unbeaten with spectacular defense

Kentucky Wildcats celebrate after a Matt Ruffalo kick. (Credit: Jeff Blake-USA TODAY Sports)
Kentucky Wildcats celebrate after a Matt Ruffalo kick. (Credit: Jeff Blake-USA TODAY Sports) /
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Watching Kentucky football is never easy for Big Blue Nation to sit through and it’s apparent this will be the year of the Cardiac Cats who survived, advanced, and remain undefeated after a hard-fought 16-10 win at South Carolina.

Kentucky’s offense may have turned it over four times in the game, but the Wildcat defense would not allow the Gamecocks to capitalize on any of the miscues allowing zero points.

When coach Mark Stoops pulled off his headphones and tossed them away he knew he had just survived and sets up an undefeated battle in Lexington next Saturday against Florida.

Kentucky football undefeated behind a stellar defense that came to play

Make no mistake the hero of this game was the Big Blue Defense. Had it not been for them rising to the magnitude of this game the outcome would have been much different.

That’s because the offense did everything it could to give the game away. Literally.

When you have kicker Matt Ruffolo putting more points on the board than the rest of the offense it has to be a concern. The fifth-year senior alone was responsible for 10 of the Wildcat points by being perfect on one extra point and three field goals of 43, 21, and 27 yards.

But the win is another trophy to put on Stoops mantle of ways he has drastically improved the program since he arrived in 2013, particularly over the past four seasons. The Wildcats are a perfect 8-0 in the Stoops era in road games with at least a 10-point lead at halftime. Kentucky led 10-0 at the break.

Kentucky also showed they continue to have the Gamecocks number now winning seven of the past eight meetings.

Let’s look at the three things that jumped out from the win.