Kentucky Football: Cats back on the field so where do SEC teams stack up

Kentucky running back Chris Rodriguez Jr. (Credit: Dale Zanine-USA TODAY Sports)
Kentucky running back Chris Rodriguez Jr. (Credit: Dale Zanine-USA TODAY Sports) /

The Kentucky football team returns to game week mode this week ready to face Mississippi State as the back end of the schedule gets underway on Saturday in Week No. 9.

Several of the Southeastern Conference teams were also on their bye week but let’s get a better look at where the Wildcats stand along with the rest of the conference, who is heading up, and who is positioned well-making runs at the playoffs and bowls.

Currently, after this week’s polls, were released Kentucky had moved up to No. 12 in each. There are six SEC teams ranked in the Top 25 of both the AP and Coaches Poll. There are as many as 9 teams projected to make post-season bowl games by many sites predictions.

Kentucky football looks to run the table and finish as an elite SEC team

The Kentucky football team has its sights set on making the CFS Playoffs and definitely a New Year’s Six Bowl game and finishing as an elite SEC team. Projections as well as my thoughts will be released later today.

The current SEC standings have Georgia in the East and Alabama leading in the West. No real surprise there but sitting behind them are a pair of surprise teams in Kentucky and Ole Miss. While this is nice the Wildcats need Ole Miss to drop a game to make them the clear No. 3 in the SEC overall.

SEC East

Georgia             7-0    5-0

Kentucky          6-1    4-1

Florida               4-3    2-3

Tennessee         4-4   2-3

South Carolina  4-4   1-4

Missouri              3-4   0-3

Vanderbilt           2-6   0-4

SEC West

Alabama            7-1    4-1

Ole Miss             6-1    3-1

Auburn                5-2   2-1

Texas A&M         6-2   3-2

Mississippi St    4-3   2-2

LSU                       4-4   2-3

Arkansas             5-3   1-3

Obviously for Kentucky to play in the SEC championship game it would need Georgia to drop two games and the probability of that is almost nil. But bragging rights for second in the East and third overall in the conference is a very real possibility.

The Cats have a two-game cushion on Florida whom they beat so a tiebreaker goes to UK. They host the Vols in what should be a wild one in two weeks. If they survive the next two weekends then Big Blue can run the table finishing 11-1.

Breaking down Kentucky and the rest of the contenders remaining schedule

Remaining games:

Kentucky – at Mississippi State, Tennessee, at Vanderbilt, New Mexico State, at Louisville. 

Tennessee – bye this week, at Kentucky, Georgia, South Alabama, and Vandy.

Florida – has already beaten Tennessee and has had their bye. Upcoming Georgia, at South Carolina, Samford, at Missouri, and Florida State.

Alabama – bye this week. LSU, New Mexico State, Arkansas, and at Auburn.

Ole Miss – at Auburn, Liberty, Texas A&M, Vandy, at Mississippi State.

Auburn – Ole Miss, at Texas A&M, Mississippi State, at South Carolina, Alabama.

Alabama has already beaten Ole Miss this year and I would think the Rebels and Tigers each will suffer at least one loss if not two. With Ole Miss and Auburn teeing it up this weekend against each other someone will gain separation in the West.

While Kentucky football fans keep one eye over on the West the team clearly knows what is before them. Run the table and you have positioned yourself the best you possibly can. The next two weeks will show just where we stand among the SEC elite now.

Coach Mark Stoops always focuses on one game at a time and last week kept it simple following Tuesday’s practice and he addressed the media as to the Cat’s preparation for Mississippi State.

"“Working on ourselves this week. Like always in ‘byes’, we will look at all the good things we’ve done, keep trying to continue to get better. Look at the areas where we’re falling short, work on them. Work on different ways to get better and also work on (next opponent) Mississippi State.”"

I have predicted all season that Big Blue would finish an amazing 10-2 losing to Mississippi State but considered flipping that to Tennessee. They have to win at least one of these games and handle the ones they are expected to win.

Come out the victor and that means in successive weeks they beat Florida, LSU, played Georgia tough, beat Mississippi State, and Tennessee.

That would be impressive to anyone.

Next. Kentucky moves to No. 12 in polls. dark