“You can say all you want about UK defense, but their offense couldn’t have done what they are doing now against a high school team last year.” –@StraitPinkie
Yeah, I quoted myself via Twitter to start the recap. Get over it.
Max Smith impressed again, UK’s wide receivers looked more than competent and after a slow start the ground game made some big plays to really inflate their numbers. Still, the story was Max Smith, Aaron Boyd and the rest of the receiving core. Smith was nearly perfect, completing 30-of-39 passes for 354 yards and four touchdowns. Flawless. Boyd built off of his performance last week when he reminded UK fans that he does actually exist. He finished with a career-high 11 catches for an even 100 yards and his first career touchdown. He was a huge part of the offense.
La’Rod King caught five balls for 53 yards and touchdown, making a few really good catches. Gene McCaskill had 35 yards on three catches and made the catch of the day in the end zone for a touchdown. DeMarcus Sweat impressed with his 56-yard touchdown pass. All-in-all Smith hit ten different receivers and that includes Daryl Collins going catch-less a week after emerging against U of L.
The ground game got off to a slow start. At the end of the first quarter they had zero yards and Raymond Sanders was at minus-2 yards. You never felt like they could get two or three yards whenever they wanted and that was exhibited when the Cats couldn’t score when they had three tries from the one yard line in the third quarter following a fumble recovery. But, they were able to gash the Golden Flashes with big gains. Sanders had a 67-yard touchdown and Jonathan George had a 38-yard scamper of his own. Sanders finished with his first 100-yard rushing game of his career with 115 yards on 13 carries. George had 52 on six carries. It was Dyshawn Mobley who got the ball at the one yard line and failed to punch it in after complaining about a lack of touches via twitter. Quit talking and let your actions do the talking.
Defensively, there wasn’t much to take away from this game. Kent State averaged nearly six yards a play and had over 100 rushing yards in the first half. This a week after they managed just 101 rushing yards against almighty Towson. Dri Archer appeared to be one of the best and quickest backs in the NCAA at times and you heard his name on the loud speaker at Commonwealth Stadium over and over again.
The defense did nut up a little in the second half. They followed the goal line stand with a safety after Dri Archer tripped in the end zone and Martavius Neloms’ hit to cause a fumble was definitely the defensive play of the game. Still, if UK allows teams to run the ball as easily as Kent State did, it is going to be tough for them to win games. They have to get better.
Kentucky needed to win this game definitively and they did just that with a 47-14 whomping. After two games I really believe that this offense can score against anyone they play and that is something you definitely could not say a year ago. But, the defense has a ways to go if they want to compete in the SEC and even approach bowl eligibility.
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