Athlon Sports projects Kentucky football for icky bowl game

Kentucky Head Coach Mark Stoops
Kentucky Head Coach Mark Stoops /

Life after Will Levis leaves Kentucky football in a weird spot, but experts still things they are in line to make a bowl game in 2023.

Despite losing their starting quarterback and running back, the team brings back its top four wide receivers from a year ago. They should also have a competitive defense that ranked third in the SEC in 2022.

The new-look Wildcats are flying a bit under the radar. Transfer Devin Leary figures to be a top QB in the SEC and could wind up passing the 7-win mark posted by Levis last season.

Depending on your taste buds, Kentucky football will either be in for a tangy treat or a gross game in the postseason.

It may still be half a year from now, but Athlon Sports predicts the Wildcats to play in the Mayo Bowl against the Pittsburgh Panthers on Dec. 27. If you’re feeling good about that projection, you might want to book a flight to Charlotte, N.C. as soon as possible.

Of course, the highlight of the Mayo Bowl is the winning head coach getting mayonnaise dumped on them, instead of a refreshing overflow of Gatorade. After all, who wouldn’t want to see Mark Stoops covered in some good Hellmann’s Mayonaise?

It might be a meme of a bowl game, but the Mayo Bowl isn’t some big joke. It’s currently played between the ACC and the SEC and featured No. 23 NC State last postseason. Kentucky football technically played in it in 2019, when it was named the Belk Bowl. The Wildcats held off Virginia Tech, 37-30, with Lynn Bowden being named the game’s MVP.

As the season inches closer, more bowl projections should be announced. The Cats have a fairly easy non-conference slate before SEC play begins. The first game of the season is on Sept. 2 at Noon against Ball State.