You’re probably thinking it, this team already knows it. The Kentucky Wildcats versus the Georgia Bulldogs in Sanford Stadium is going to be a “HUGE game” as Coach Smart said in an interview yesterday. Mark Stoops and his team have been getting fired up over the past couple weeks and the college football world saw it come together when they lit up the Florida Gators last week running for over 300 yards, beating them 33 to 14, and sending Napier and his team home with some ugly film to study on the ride back. If you thought South Carolina was bad or Auburn was tough, Kentucky is going to be a completely different level of painful– literally.
Smart says his players are the most sore after Kentucky games because of their physical identity. It’s always a tough matchup because both teams, Georgia and Kentucky alike, pride themselves on being physical. It’s all Smart talks about whenever Kentucky is brought up.
“Every time we play these guys they’re physical,” he said yesterday.
Two places where you can see this physicality lived out are: 1. their running game and 2. their defense.
Bringing up the fact that Kentucky’s Ray Davis ran for 280 last week, Smart made sure to give him his credit saying:
“He’s an exceptional back. As good a back as I’ve seen in a long time. Explosive… He’s aggressive in the way he runs. It reminds me of Swift. He’s just a little bigger.”
To add, Smart didn’t forget to give Davis’ offensive line their flowers saying they had “tremendous blocking” up front. Something the Dawgs lacked in their bout against Auburn last week.
With injuries on the offensive line, some of the performance– or lack thereof rather– is excusable, but Georgia just couldn’t get the job done against Auburn’s defensive front. And because of that thinking about going against Kentucky’s shouldn’t get anyone all that excited. The Cats let up an average of about 75 yards a game, and you can attribute that to the physicality, size, and variety of their defense.
Kentucky will by no means be an easy opponent. Outsiders are going to think that Georgia will steamroll Stoops and his guys this coming weekend. If you’ve paid any attention to the recent history of these two teams over the past three years, that’s simply not the case. The Dawgs are going to have to suit up and play some tough ball, and only then will we be able to see if they got what it takes.