The stakes have escalated dramatically since the Gators’ side unexpectedly knocked out seventh-seeded Utah last Saturday.
Now, Billy Napier is getting the nation’s attention after just four quarters of his tenure as head coach.
Saturday’s Cats vs the Gators game will be featured at 7:00 p.m. on ESPN.
From a high-level perspective, Georgia is often used as a measuring stick, but it’s important to remember that winning the SEC East generally comes at the cost of beating the Gators as well.
With the UF likely still on the cusp of their thrilling 29-26 victory over Utah, the Cats on the other hand will be traveling to Gainesville looking to add some juice compared to what they showed off in week one.
I’m using the word juice because in my opinion, it’s not really fair to classify the UK’s 24 point win as less than acceptable.
Certainly, much remains to be desired, especially on the offensive side of the ball.
But all things considered, Will Levis still passed for over 300 yards and the newly added weapons around him showed what they can bring to the table.
It’s also important to keep in mind that first-year offensive coordinator Rich Scangarillo deliberately kept the vanilla approach to ensuring that Florida would have to do some guesswork Saturday night when trying to defend their attack.
One thing the Gators will know for sure is that Kentucky is now weak in the back-running position.
It will primarily be up to the tandem of Kavosiey Smoke and La’Vell Wright to handle all the transfers after the injuries of Ramon Jefferson and Jutahn McClain in Week 1.
Running cats weren’t there against Miami (Ohio) and that would have to change if the UK had a chance as the underdogs in the swamp. I was expecting a more focused effort to run the ball in Gainesville.
Instructors have been impressed by Louisville’s Laville Wright since starting camp this fall. He will now have the opportunity to show me what he can do behind a recently changing offensive line who is also looking to correct some of the shortcomings from last week.
Defensively, Kentucky will see a heavy dose of dynamic Anthony Richardson, who became a household name overnight after his electric performance against Utes.
The 6-foot-4, 232-pound quarterback stunned the crowd by rushing over 100 yards and three runs. But it was his play during the last minutes of the match that will be remembered.
If the UK can’t stifle Richardson by keeping him in the pocket, it will be a long night to defend Brad White.
If Richardson somehow manages to replicate a similar performance during another prime-time game, he’ll wake up on Sunday morning as the legitimate Heisman candidate to watch out for.
The UK will also have to come up with a game plan for another sophomore, running back Montreal Johnson Jr., who carried the ball 12 times against Utah and earned 75 yards and touched.
Kentucky must be aware of the real new student Trevor Etienne, younger brother of former Clemson star Travis Etienne. In the first week, Trevor burned Utah for 64 yards on just five buggies while catching two balls for nine yards.
As for Richardson’s most important goals, Arizona The Ricky Pearsall transfer was the talk of the fall camp, and he did well in the first week with four grabs for 67 yards. The junior wide had 48 grabs for 580 yards and four pitches in 2021 with the Sun Devils.
Fellow rookie, Justin Schurter, had two fists for 25 yards, while Xavier Henderson had six passes for 41 yards.
Needless to say, Kentucky’s strategy would be to keep Anthony Richardson in the pocket and force him to hit them with his arm.
Make sure you do all the housework early Saturday, because there are some big SEC football players out there who will be playing with big ramifications on the streak.
Follow A Sea of Blue for all the updates throughout the weekend.
game time: 7 PM ET on September 10, 2022
Site: Ben Hill Griffin Stadium – Gainesville, Florida
TV channel: ESPN
radio: Tom Leach and Jeff Pekoro will have a UK Radio Network call at 6:30 AM, 98.1 FM in Lexington, and on UK Sports Network.
replay: WatchESPN and SEC network (check local listings for restart schedule).
weather: Scattered thunder showers in the evening. Partly cloudy sky at night. 73F is low. The wind is light and variable. 50% chance of rain Per Weather.com.