TAYLOR: What UK must to do beat FSU

Dean Hood hasn't paid much attention to Kentucky, but knows what the Wildcats must do to beat Florida State in the Music City Bowl. Hood should know. The former Eastern Kentucky University assistant coach has spent the past five seasons preparing for the Seminoles on a yearly basis as defensive coordinator at Wake Forest.

"Stopping the run is the key," Hood said. "That's the key against anybody. If you stop the run, you've got a chance to win the football game. That's the key to beating anybody in football."

The Demon Deacons had success against Florida State on Oct. 11, handing the Seminoles a 24-21 setback in Winston-Salem. Hood said the team's instability at the quarterback position played a role in the win.

"When we played them, they had not settled on a quarterback," Hood said. "That's been a problem (for them). That helped us. They've just been inconsistent on settling on a quarterback. That has been their Achilles Heel."

Hood said a big concern is the team's wide receivers, including Greg Carr.

"He's huge," Hood said. "He's a big concern."

Hood added that Preston Parker, a wide receiver and running back Antone Smith are equally explosive.

"They are very talented skill-wise," Hood said.

As for the Seminoles' tradition and legendary coach Bobby Bowden, Hood said the Bowden was "cream of the crop."

"He's what you aspire to be," Hood said. Hood is also impressed with offensive coordinator Jimbo Fisher, Bowden's designated replacement once he decides to retire. Hood said the Seminoles' offense will be one to reckon with in the future.

"I think he (Fisher) has one of the best offensive minds in the game today," Hood said. "It's a perfect situation for them. I think they're on the upswing and definitely a team on the rise."

Like Kentucky, Wake Forest is making its second consecutive bowl appearance and will take on Connecticut in the Meineke Car Care Bowl on Dec. 29 in Charlotte. Hood said playing in two straight postseason appearances will help to some degree when it comes to recruiting.

"It helps to an extent," Hood said. "We're looking for a certain kind of kid. We look at character first and that makes recruiting like a puddle to start with."

Hood admits that he hasn't kept up with the Wildcats, but said a bowl berth is a strong indicator of the team's ability.

"I don't know a whole lot about them, because I didn't get a chance to watch them," he said. "I know they're going to a bowl game. They must be really good."

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