We are now more than halfway through the 2013 college football season, and I have to say that this rebuilding year thing is getting a bit old.
Remember earlier in the season when I was all hopeful that University of Kentucky was going to turn its luck around with a new coaching staff, a new year and a new season outlook? Well, my optimism is dwindling.
In the last five consecutive games, the Wildcats have had the losing end of the stick…not too different from previous seasons. And with an all-Southeastern conference line-up to round out the rest of the regular season, the cards continue to be stacked against my alma mater.
Of course, I do have to give the team some credit. The Oct. 24 game at Mississippi State was the closest thing to a win that I’ve seen since the non-conference match-up against Miami of Ohio on Sept. 7, when Kentucky took away its sole win so far this season. Against the Bulldogs, the Wildcats had a chance to come back in the final quarter, when the score was 19-28. Kentucky scored three points when Joe Mansour made a 44-yard field goal, which brought the team within six points. Close, but no cigar.
Three of this season’s losses thus far have been lost by more than 10 points (27-13 against in-state rival University of Louisville on Sept. 14, 24-7 against Florida on Sept. 28 and 48-7 against Alabama on Oct. 12), but other than that, Kentucky hasn’t lost by much margin. Nonconference opponent Western Kentucky University won by 9 points in the first game of the season, on Aug. 31. Kentucky lost to South Carolina by 7, with a final score of 35-28, on Oct. 5. As I said already, Mississippi State squeaked out a 6-point lead against the Wildcats to win 28-22.
Granted, a loss is a loss. I don’t count those games as “wins” by any measure of the word.
Why have the Wildcats had such a winning drought? And will they have any more wins this season? The answers to these questions remain to be seen. With the exception of about a third of the season, there has been some degree of effort to counter the losing season fate. The toughness of the Kentucky schedule has been well-documented, and I don’t discount that.
Ask me those questions again after they have another win. In the meantime, though, we Wildcats fans will wade through the remainder of a so-so season.
UK Athletics, “Scoring Summary,” ukathletics.com
UK Athletics, “2013 Schedule,” ukathletics.com