The game opened with starting quarterback Shane Boyd on the sideline because of a shoulder injury, and then went downhill from there. Two short Kentucky punts and a fumble by quarterback Andre Woodson in his first college start set up No. 3 Auburn at Kentucky's 29, 35 and 19 ... and the Tigers cashed in each for a touchdown. Just 101/2 minutes into the game, the Tigers led 21-0 and the Wildcats looked like deer caught in headlights.
"That was one of the worst starts to a football game that I've ever been around," Kentucky coach Rich Brooks said. "Each week it's a different problem. The offense came out skittish, and the punter just killed us in the first quarter."
During the game Kentucky (1-6, 0-4 SEC) lost two more injured starters, defensive tackle Sweet Pea Burns and tailback Tony Dixon. The Wildcats went on to give up seven sacks, commit 10 penalties for 57 yards, lose two fumbles (including one that was returned for a touchdown) and produce only 110 yards, the lowest output in Kentucky's two seasons under Brooks and offensive coordinator Ron Hudson.
"We just made too many mistakes, too many penalties," Hudson said. "We get something going, we're driving and we just hurt ourselves. You can't do that."
GAME BALL GOES TO: RB Rafael Little -- Little, a true freshman, carried 14 times for 48 yards and a touchdown. That might not seem like much, but it was the first rushing TD allowed by Auburn this season.
KEEP AN EYE ON: P Sevin Sucurovic -- As if the offense and defense didn't struggle enough, Sucurovic also added to the mess with a 15-yard punt that gave Auburn the ball at the Kentucky 29-yard line and then sent another punt 29 yards to Auburn's 25. Auburn scored TDs both times. "Our punter killed us," Kentucky coach Rich Brooks said. "Every week it's a different problem."
QUOTE TO NOTE: "Somebody's trying to get my job, I guess. But the only way they're going to get me out of here is to run my ass out of town." -- Kentucky coach Rich Brooks after ESPN.com reported that Brooks would resign at the end of the season and Louisville defensive coordinator Mike Cassity would become Kentucky's new coach.
STRATEGY AND PERSONNEL
LOOKING GOOD: Redshirt freshman QB Andre Woodson made his first start and completed 14 of 26 passes for 73 yards, but at least he didn't throw any interceptions. He continued to get up after being knocked around for seven sacks. He lost two fumbles and showed he's got a lot to learn, but he also showed some hints of why Kentucky coaches are excited about his future.
STILL NEEDS SOME WORK: The Wildcats don't have a chance if the offense can't give the defense more help. This time the offense allowed seven sacks, hurt itself with penalties, lost two fumbles and gained only 110 yards. ROSTER REPORT: Kentucky can't afford injuries to key players and played Auburn without starting QB Shane Boyd (left shoulder). Then they lost two more starters when DE Sweet Pea Burns and TB Tony Dixon both suffered sprained left ankles that could keep them out of this week's game at Mississippi State.