SHANE SHACKLEFORD: More Pigskin Discussion About Kentucky Wildcats & Others
After a semi-eventful Week 1 of college football which saw either good football (if you’re a fan of most any college football team) or awful football (if you’re a UK football fan), let’s look at five good takeaways to look forward to for the coming week. I will try to be positive for us Wildcat fans.
1. I know the Wildcat faithful are demanding drastic changes with the football program, and absolutely they’re right. But there are some big roadblocks. The buyout of Coach Mark Stoops and staff are near 18 million dollars. With the upgrade of facilities that must be paid for, among other things, I just don’t see it happening this year. However, I do see changes coming, especially internally among the coaching staff. It has been announced coach Stoops will have “an expanded role on defense” i.e. defensive coordinator DJ Eliot could be on the move. It will also be interesting how the offense morphs with coordinator Eddie Gran. I expect more commitment to the ground game with Boom Williams, Jojo Kent, and Ben Snell with a lot of tight end CJ Conrad in the passing game, especially off play action. This should help settle down young QB Drew Barker and the offense.
2. The powers that be should step in and award Oklahoma State the win over Central Michigan. The officials absolutely screwed up the final play which resulted in the Chippewas "Hail Mary" final play that beat the Cowboys. The rules plainly say the game ended on the final play and that’s the way it is. NCAA, do what’s right.
3. National Game of the Week: No. 2 Florida State at No. 10 Louisville. Simple question; can Louisville high octane offense score against the uber-quick Noles defense? If they can, they can pull off the upset.
4. SEC Upset Alert: As bad as I want to write UK, it’s really South Carolina. East Carolina is a solid team and can walk out of Columbia with the upset win. By the way, I do think the Cats pick up their first win at Commonwealth Saturday. If not, I can’t imagine the repercussions. Seriously.
5. Predictions! I was barely above mediocre last week. Here’s hoping I improve some (winners in bold):
Last Week: 7-5 overall
New Mexico State @ KENTUCKY
Ohio @ 15 Tennessee
Vanderbilt @ Georgia Tech
1 Alabama @ 19 Ole Miss
East Carolina @ South Carolina
17 Texas A&M @ Auburn
Mississippi State @ 20 LSU
Texas State @ 24 Arkansas
North Texas @ 23 Florida
16 Georgia @ Missouri