Monday, September 15, 2008

Wildcat WrapUp: MTSU

Alright, alright, alright. I blew it. On this very webpage last week I predicted an assbeating of epic proportions. A thrashing from pillar to post of the MTSU Blue Raiders by Kentucky, the likes of which would force all the MTSU fans to crawl back into the Tennessee holes from whence they came. I'll have my crow medium well with a side of cole slaw.

There really isn't much good to take away, aside from getting the 20-14 win, and though happy about that, here's what troubles me:
  • The O-line looked awful. Miserable. Dreadful. Insert other negative adjective here. Simply unacceptable, and with play like that in SEC competition, we're going to get beat often and badly. It's got to improve.
  • Injuries to key players like Randall Cobb, Micah Johnson, TC Drake, and Ricky Lumpkin. The whole purpose of playing payday games like this is to get the W, get out uninjured, and go on to the next week. Epic fail on the injury-free front, and a nearly epic fail on the W front.
  • I realize we don't have sure-handed big play guys like Stevie Johnson, Keenan Burton, and Jacob Tamme anymore, but there were multiple drops by almost everyone. It's unacceptable as well, and again, if that continues during SEC play, we're screwed.
  • Hey, Lonas Seiber, if you don't want to be a kicker, that's fine. Just turn in your pads and quit. But your effort on Saturday was a joke. With an offense that has the propensity to sputter at times, you've got to make field goals. Anything over 40, I'll somewhat forgive, but the short misses are ridiculous.
    I'd give you a different finger, Lonas
Of course, all this sounds very Chicken Little-ish, and I suppose to a certain extent, it shouldn't be. The second half was clearly dominated statistically by Kentucky. There were key injuries which resulted in depth issues, mismatches, and a lack of momentum and energy on the Kentucky sideline. I get it. But the blocked field goal and hail mary was reminiscent of the Kentucky teams I've been suffering through before the last several years.

Even with all that, which is troubling and hurts Kentucky, let's keep something in perspective... we were basically one yard away from being a joke on Sportscenter. Other than the win, which I'm thankful for, there is virtually nothing to be thankful for on this Monday morning as a UK fan. As bad as this team played, we deserved to lose. And any team worth a damn would have beaten us.

The injuries are troubling and could have serious ramifications, and to be frank, another mediocre performance against WKU in two weeks and I'll have some serious reservations about the potential of this team. Thank God for the bye week, folks. Rich Brooks said mid-week that this was a team that lacked focus and effort, and it certainly showed on Saturday. We play like that against any SEC team and we're getting pummeled.

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