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Charleston Southern Buccaneers @ Kentucky Wildcats: Open Game Thread

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The Kentucky Wildcats enter the home stretch of their season today versus the Charleston Southern Buccaneers.  With three quarters of the season gone, the Wildcats are still two wins away from bowl eligibility and three away from a sure thing.  That’s not a nice place to be with only three games left.

Game particulars are as follows, courtesy of

Charleston Southern @ Kentucky
Game Notes UK Notes Get Acrobat Reader | UK Depth Chart Get Acrobat Reader
CSU Notes Get Acrobat Reader
Date & Time Saturday, Nov. 6
12:30 p.m
Coverage TV: BBSN
Radio: BBSN
Online Audio listen
Online Video via ESPN3 (subject to blackout)
Location Commonwealth Stadium
Lexington, Ky.
Gameday Information

This game represents an actual must-win for Kentucky.  Charleston Southern is an FCS school, and it would be a major upset if they were to come into Commonwealth Stadium and knock off Kentucky.

Late breaking bad news is that Derrick Locke will not be playing today, although he will be dressing.  It is very important that we get him back for the final two games of the season — Vanderbilt at home in Commonwealth, and Tennessee on the road in Knoxville — and we can only hope that this is his last game of the season on the bench.

Scheduling FCS school games are a sore spot with many fans of FBS schools, but they are found in almost every SEC schedule each and every year.  They obviously represent “guaranteed” wins (I use the parenthesis in memory of the 2007 Appalachian State upset of the Michigan Wolverines in the Big House), but they can also represent opportunities for younger players to improve and gain confidence.  Let’s hope that’s what happens today, particularly defensively, because the Wildcats need some improvement and confidence there.

Some interesting subplots also exist in this game:

  • Randall Cobb has an opportunity to use this game as a springboard to put him in position to break Tim Tebow’s SEC record for touchdowns scored if he chooses to return next year;
  • Mike Hartline having a big day here (400 yards) would keep him right in it for the #1 passer in the SEC.  Mallett Currently leads by 47 yards, but in 1 fewer game.
  • Danny Travathan currently leads the SEC in tackles with 10.8 per game.  He could solidify his All-SEC season with a big game today.

Finally, Kentucky needs to show it can play a game without turnovers.  Not only that, the Kentucky defense needs to really work hard to get turnovers.  UK started the year with a really positive turnover margin, but the last four games have turned that positive into a giant, hairy negative.

I myself will be doing the Breeder’s Cup thing today, but I’ll be checking in on the game when I get a chance.

Go, ‘Cats!

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Kentucky Wildcats vs. Charleston Southern Buccaneers: Notes on the Bucs and ‘Cats

Content provided by A Sea Of Blue.

Kentucky's Randall Cobb stiff-arming the competition.

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Andy Lyons – Getty Images

Kentucky’s Randall Cobb stiff-arming the competition.

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Find Glenn’s UK versus Dillard basketball game “Postmortem” here.

The Kentucky Wildcats find their ship quickly taking on water.  After a hopeful start to the season, the ‘Cats have dropped five of their last six games, making their record a disappointing 4-5 overall, and 1-4 in the SEC.  The culprit?  Turnovers.  Fifteen of which the boys in blue have committed in the fateful six game stretch (all 15 miscues have been in the five losses).  Proving UK’s offense, while good, is not good enough to overcome defensive deficiencies and an abundance of turnovers.

Today, though, offers the Cats an opportunity to end the 2010 season on a high note, for FCS opponent Charleston Southern arrives in Lexington, leading off a three-game slate of contests the ‘Cats should be favored to win.  And with running back Derrick Locke‘s return – albeit, in a supporting role — which should aid an ailing Wildcat running game, the time is now for the ‘Cats to put past failures in the rear-view mirror, and focus on valuing the ball, and again, learning how to win.

For a look at the Buccaneers, as well as how some individual ‘Cats rank in the SEC, and other stats and stuff, follow me after the jump:

Charleston Southern Personnel

Quarterback Andrew Trudnowski: 6-4, 212 lb senior — Trudnowski is 75-144 (52.1%) through the air for 875 yards, six touchdowns and six interceptions.

Trudnowski took over the starting signal-caller spot for senior A.J. Toscano after Toscano tore his ACL in the Buc’s game with Gardner-Webb on October 9. 

Running back DeMarcus Moon: 5-10, 197 lb senior — Moon has carried the ball 95 times or 323 yards (3.4 yards per carry) and six touchdowns.

Running back B.J. Hackworth: 6-0, 240 lb junior — Hackworth has 31 rushing attempts for 151 yards (4.9ypc).

Wide receiver/running back Gerald Stevenson: 5-10, 165 lb senior — Stevenson has caught 43 passes for 643 yards (15.0 yards per reception) and two touchdowns.  The dual-threat has also ran the ball 33 times for 154 yards (4.7 ypc).  Stevenson also returns punts and kick-offs — Nine punt returns for a 10.1 average, and 12 kick returns for an outstanding 38.2 average and three touchdowns.  Stevenson averages 192.3 all-purpose yards per game.

Stevenson is an All-Big South performer and finds himself on not one, but two FCS watch-lists: Wide Receiver of the Year and Kick Returner of the Year.  If ‘Cat fans are looking for the player capable of beating UK, this is the guy.

Wide Receiver Kwame Krakue: 5-10, 178 lb senior — Krakue  has made 29 catches for 400 yards (13.8 ypr) and three touchdowns.

Wide receiver Anthony Chalmers: 6-2, 185 lb junior — Chalmers (no relation to Mario) has caught 20 passes for 258 yards (12.9 ypr) and three touchdowns.

Wide receiver Deon Lee: 6-1, 200 lb senior – Lee has snagged 20 passes for 247 yards (12.4 ypr) and three touchdowns.

Wide receiver James Nunley: 5-10, 178 lb freshman — Nunley has caught 14 passes for 207 yards (14.8 ypr) and two touchdowns.

Linebacker Chris Patrick: 6-0, 218 lb senior — Patrick leads the Bucs with 63 tackles, 7.5 tackles for loss, and 1.0 sacks.

Linebacker Fred Godfrey: 5-11, 225 lb senior — Godfrey has made 50 tackles, 7.5 tackles for loss and 2.0 sacks.

Buccaneer Notes

CSU averages 22.6 points per game, and gives up 37.4 … CSU averages only 89.9 rush yards per game, and gives up an average of 197.9 yards on the ground … CSU opponents are averaging 230.9 yards through the air … CSU averages 338.6 yards of total offense, and gives up 428.8 … The Bucs are a minus-5 in turnover margin … CSU has rushed for 105 yards on 60 attempts (1.7 ypc) over their last two games … CSU’s longest rush of the season is 22 yards by Gerald Stevenson … Stevenson also had 198 receiving yards versus Mars Hill … Defensive back Charles James had three interceptions against Liberty.

Wildcat Particulars

On the year, UK averages 141.1 rushing yards per game … Since Derrick Locke went down three games ago, the ‘Cats have averaged 70.3 rushing yards per game … The ‘Cats average 278.3 passing yards per game … UK is averaging 32.8 points per game … The ‘Cats are giving up 30.8 points per game … Kentucky is piling up the yards, averaging 419.4 total yards per game … They are also giving up the yards, allowing 180.3 rush yards per game … UK’s passing defense is a bit better, giving up only 169.4 yards through the air.

Top Ten ‘Cats

The following Kentucky football players rank in the SEC’s top ten in the noted categories:

Randall Cobb: 1st in receptions per game (6.6); 5th in receiving yards per game (75.8); 6th in points per game (7.1): 6th in punt return average (8.7); 7th in kick return average (23.6); and 2nd in all-purpose yards per game (179.9).  

Mike Hartline: 2nd in passing yards per game (266.9); 2nd in total passing yards (2,402); 3rd in total offense per game (263.1).

Chris Matthews: 5th in receptions per game (4.7); 6th in receiving yards per game (69.2).

Danny Trevathan: 1st in tackles (97, 10.8 pg) — No other Wildcat is in the top 20; 6th in tackles for loss (10.5); t4th in fumbles forced (3).

Ryan Tydlacka: 3rd in punting average (45.4).

Thanks for reading and Go ‘Cats!

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Russell to Start at Tailback Against Charleston Southern

Sophomore tailback Donald Russell will get his third start of the season when the University of Kentucky football team takes on the Charleston Southern Buccaneers at Commonwealth Stadium on Saturday at 12:30 p.m. ET.

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