Although playing a lower-ranked opponent in the season-opener, the Wildcats displayed a well-balanced display of offense against Eastern Kentucky, an attack sparked by a solid core of ground troops and an impressive aerial display led by Andre Woodson.
The final tally was 50 points and more than 500 yards worth of total offense. It was an impressive opener to say the least.
However, Kentucky knows the schedule will only get tougher and more work needs to be done before a final judgment is cast on this crew. Receiver Dicky Lyons said offensive coordinator Joker Phillips isn't taking a laid-back approach just because he knows he has all the proper tools in place to compete against the elite players in the Southeastern Conference.
"He always says he's never going to get fat and happy," Lyons said earlier this week. "He's not fat and happy so we need to keep on working."
Offensive lineman Zipp Duncan didn't make a final determination on the line's performance in the opener, but didn't like the fact that the team surrendered a pair of sacks.
"We need to work on our pass protection," he said. "We have a solid running game, but there are always some things you can work on."
Another issue is the fact that Kentucky had 28 missed assignments on offense.
"I think that the 28 missed assignments in that game are a little high, but when you look at the amount of people that played, and the inexperience, than there's a reason for it being high," Kentucky coach Rich Brooks said. "I think we played 72 players in the game, which is very high for any game."
Brooks liked the way his team ran the ball, but said he doesn't want to get too excited about the team's performance in the backfield.
"We'd like to continue to have it go the same way it did the other night, but again, the competition is going to get more difficult, so therefore you aren't going to be able to see it be as successful," he said. "Let's hope that we don't have the door slammed in our face this week on our running game. Let's see if we can put some games back-to-back and than back-to-back-to-back, which will really determine if we're improving on something. A spurt on something doesn't mean that you've solved the problem."
True, but Brooks also knows that it's a little easier to prepare for the next opponent coming off a win, rather than a loss to Louisville, which is what has happened in the first four years of his regime in Lexington.
"It's a heck of a lot easier building off of a win than off of a loss. I don't think it makes much difference who the win is against," he said. "You see the things you're doing well, the things you're doing okay and the things that you still need to correct. So I don't think it makes any difference on what game we're coming off of."
Taylor's Thoughts: Kentucky is going to score
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