The University of Kentucky Wildcats are 6 and 2 and going to a Bowl Game for the second straight year.
The had to fight against a Tennessee Team that is still looking for their first win in the SEC. This is a rivalry game and can not be taken for granted. The Vols came in ready to play and showed it on the first play of the game by delivering a shot on Benny Snell that caused a fumble and game them the ball on the UK 15. Thats when the Wildcat Defense stepped up and held TN to 3 yards and a FG. Tennessee took an early 3 - 0 lead.
The opening 1:43 were a battle and it set the tone for the rest of the night. UK did not help themselves out by turning the ball over 4 times but the defense stepped up and held TN to 9 points on those 4 turnovers.
Offensively Benny had the breakout game everyone has been looking for from him. He rushed 27 times for a total of 180 yards and 3 touchdowns. We talked about how this needed to be a old school SEC game, one that featured a solid run game. UK gained 289 on the ground compared to 82 yards in the air. almost half of those passing yards (36 yds) came from #1 Lynn Bowden on a pass play out of the wildcat.
The #1 Key to the game today was our defense. We struggled at times to make tackles, lots of times but they did their job when it counted most. The kept the Tennessee Offense out of the end zone after we turned it over. They were also aggressive in the passing game by earning 8 sacks for negative 60 yards and 4 more tackles for a loss bringing the total lost yards by Tennessee to 69 yds.
The #1A Key to tonight for me was the pay of Stephen Johnson. He left in the second half after taking a hard hit on a long run. He was taken to the locker room with a left shoulder injury and Barker replaced him in the backfield. On his second play of the game Barker ran around the right side for some good yardage but fumbled on the play. After 3 plays of the next offensive drive SJ returned to the game to a loud ovation from BBN. He came back and sparked the offense to game winning drive in the fourth quarter with a 11 yard run capped off wit ha diving leap into the end zone. The Wildcats go for two on the conversion and line up in he wildcat formation, SJ takes what looks to be a reverse and throws a nice pass to Benny Snell for the 2 point conversion and a 3 point lead wit h:33 on the clock.
The Defense has one more stop to make and almost forced the Vols to turn the ball over on downs but they convert a 4th and 24 for a first down. Tennessee takes the next play for 13 yards on a roll out by Guarantano , who gets out of bounds setting up one final play from Tennessee 49 yards line. Guarantano throws a Hail Mary that was caught by J. George but he caught it 3 yards short of the end zone. KENTUCKY WINS!
The wildcats did a great job over coming the turn overs, missed tackles and tough physical play to earn the victory and become bowl eligible.
Stay tuned for post game interviews from players and coaches. We will upload them tomorrow morning for you to view. Have any questions for the BBN Chalk Talk Guys? Hit us up tomorrow on Twitter @bbnchaltalk and we will answer them on our podcast and bring them up on the Cameron Mills Show on Sunday night at 7:30pm.
It's a great night to be a Wildcat!