Kentucky football game Saturday: Kentucky vs. Miami odds and prediction for Week 1 game

Kentucky Wildcats quarterback Will Levis (Credit: Jordan Prather-USA TODAY Sports)
Kentucky Wildcats quarterback Will Levis (Credit: Jordan Prather-USA TODAY Sports) /

Oh, Kentucky football how we have missed you, but now you are back Saturday for the 2022 edition. Big Blue Nation is like a caged animal waiting for Saturday night’s kickoff against Miami Univesity (Ohio).

Ok that might be a bit extreme but the reality is the calendar has turned to September and tailgating, the Cat Walk, and Kroger Field all come to life Saturday at 7 pm for kickoff.

Expectations are incredibly high for the Wildcat team but don’t take the opening opponent too lightly because the Miami team out of the MAC Conference is coming to play and not for a paycheck.

It’s week No. 1 and nobody can predict how things will go, but one thing is for sure: Mark Stoops’ Kentucky team cannot afford to struggle anywhere on the playing field because ironing them out before a Week 2 game at Florida won’t be easy.

Turn on the lights, lace them up and Kentucky football needs to impress

The No. 21 (Coaches) and No. 20 (Associated Press) ranked Wildcats have two 10-win campaigns in the past four seasons, been to six straight bowl games, and won four straight, and now are looking for an even bigger year and prize trophy.

So why not get this party started by playing a season opener under the Kroger Field lights for the first time in 6 years – I see a little irony there.

Stoops talked about the opening game to the media and his confidence in the team.

"“First games are always unique because you have a pretty good idea of what you have but you don’t know until you go play a football game. I have confidence in this team, I have confidence in the leadership, I have confidence in the preparation that we’ve done to this point. Now, it’s time to go put it on the field. Block out everything, really concentrate, and have great attention to detail this week, great focus this week, and go take it one day at a time.”"

Quarterback Will Levis will lead the offense and De’Andre Square the defense into battle and I think this will be a fun one to watch.

Miami coach Chuck Martin (39-52) and Stoops (59-53) both have taken programs from the depths of despair and built them into winners in nine and 10 seasons respectively.

The Cats finished 2021, 10-3 winning the Citrus Bowl over Iowa while the Redhawks went 7-6 and won the Frisco Classic over North Texas.

Both teams have solid quarterbacks in Heisman Trophy possible candidate Levis while Miami is led by veteran Brett Gabbert. Both like to sit back and scan for options to throw to, but neither is afraid to tuck it and run much to the angst of both coaches.

Levis completed 233 of 353 passes for 2,827 yards and 24 touchdowns last year but was picked off 13 times as Kentucky averaged 32.3 points a game

Miami scored 30 points a game last season as four of their six losses last season came by less than nine points. Gabbert completed 178 of 299 for 2,698  yards and just 6 picks.

Each has a solid core of running backs who can do multiple things spreading out both have solid tightened targets.

Kentucky is planning to run it by committee with diverse and very talented backs like Kavosiey Smoke, Ramone Jefferson, and JuThan McClain who will all be counted on till Chris Rodriguez returns from his suspension.

Ultimately it will come down to both teams picking on unknown secondaries of their opponents. Kentucky must do better in the category and needs takeaways this season. They went from the top of the SEC to the bottom last year.

Shore that up, get some more turnovers to go our way and it will make it much easier for the offense to move the ball, keep the defense fresh and off the field, and more importantly tilt the score in UK’s favor.

Kentucky vs Miami Odds Week 1

Kentucky is 8-4-1 all-time against Miami, with Stoops getting his first win at Kentucky back in 2013 when he beat the RedHawks 41-7

The average Week 1 betting odds across most betting sites currently have Kentucky as the favorite by 16 points or so.  When Rodriguez was officially ruled out of the game the odds moved just slightly.

Bear in mind these odds and betting spreads are averages looking at multiple betting sites.

The under/over currently fluctuates around 52 points. As for the Moneyline Kentucky averages minus -850 while Miami is plus +550.

Kentucky vs Miami Predictions Week 1

Kentucky is looking for a magical season where Stoops will become the all-time winningest coach at Kentucky with just two more wins and hopes to lead the Wildcats to an SEC East title and appearance in the SEC Championship.

To do so it starts with game No. 1 taking care of business but they need to be more impressive in victories, step on the gas, and put teams away to get those skeptics to start believing in Kentucky football.

When Stoops unveiled his first depth chart of the 2022 season on Monday, you can’t help but notice that there are seven true freshmen on the two-deep, and eight redshirt freshmen. Five freshmen will be starting on Saturday.

Ultimately I feel Kentucky can and will accomplish this in Week 1 but it won’t be smooth sailing. The Red Hawks will get their points but its how the Kentucky football team reacts while controlling the rest of the game

I’ll take Kentucky for the win 35-17.

Next. Kentucky running back by committee for now. dark