Big Blue Den's
The Den's sideline spies report the horde of police officers on hand for security weren't expecting those kind of doughnuts from the UK offense. The numbers tell the whole story: 15 of 37, 155 yards, 0 TDs, 2 INTs, 2 fumbles lost. Chapter I of the two-headed Lorenzen-Boyd quarterback was memorable for all the wrong reasons. In defense of Lo-Bo, it was running for its life the whole game, and may have seen better route-running from the postman.
We didn't hear the UK band trumpeting Jackson Browne's "Running on Empty," but the thought probably crossed their minds. The running backs entered the game hoping to take advantage of Louisville's sieve-like rush defense, but managed only 55 net yards on 17 carries, an average of 3.2 per attempt. Chad Scott failed to get on track, and Artose Pinner didn't get enough opportunities (6 carries) to make something happen.
This is a hard category to gauge without film review --- and still difficult for the casual fan --- but the offensive totals speak volumes. This line was truly offensive. No running game and quarterbacks flushed out of the pocket with regularity means you had problems up front. Kentucky coach Guy Morriss labled the O-Line's performance as one of the most disappointing on the day. These players are much better than they displayed.
What can be said here? If all you had from the game was a boxscore, it would be hard to tell UK had receivers on the field -- seven receptions for 70 yards from the entire unit. And that's counting Dougie Allen's meaningless 32-yard catch with under two minutes left in the contest. JUCO transfer Aaron Boone, being counted on to shore up the receiving corps this season, failed to record a catch. By contrast, Louisville's Zek Parker had six receptions for 184 yards.
Tight end Derek Smith looked good on the plays he made (three catches for 37 yards), but didn't have his number called often enough. You've got to find a few more ways to get the ball to your All-American candidate.
Alll these years and we never knew it --- UK is allowed to have a defensive line??? An encouraging performance from the unit many expects to be a strength of the UK defense this season. As expected, sophomore defensive tackle Dewayne Robertson was a terror with six tackles, two for losses. Ends Dennis Johnson and Chris Demaree each had six tackles as well, and spent a lot of time pressuring Ragone when he wasn't in a three-step drop. The Louisville quarterback commented afterward about how aggressive the UK defensive front was, recording several hurries and knockdowns throughout the game.
Another difficult category to gauge based on the suspension to Jamal White and the injury to Ronnie Riley. For most of the game, the linebackers appeared to do their part. Riley had eight tackles prior to suffering his fourth-quarter knee injury. Chris Gayton recorded seven tackles and a sack in the place of White. True freshman Dustin Williams received his trial by fire, and was picked on by Ragone for a late TD to Ronnie Ghent. He did, however, show signs of promise for the future.
Decent, if unspectacular. Patrick Wiggins made a huge play when he sacked Dave Rogone and forced a fumble when the Cards' were marching deep into the red zone. Octavius Bond and David Johnson did not stand out, combining for only three tackles.
Old habits are hard to break. All offseason we've heard about how
the cornerbacks would not be left on the proverbial island, and that they'd get their
heads turned in a position to make a play on the ball. So what happened on the second play
from scrimmage? An 82-yard bomb from Dave Ragone to Zek Parker as Jeremy Bowie was