UK Welcomes No. 7 Louisville to Commonwealth
Sept. 12, 2013
Coming off a 41-7 victory over Miami (Ohio), which gave the Wildcats their first win of the season and first under new head coach Mark Stoops, Kentucky will host in-state rivals and the seventh-ranked Louisville Cardinals on Saturday in Commonwealth Stadium.
Kentucky leads the all-time series, which has been played every year since 1994 after a 70-year hiatus, 14-11 and 8-7 in Lexington. Louisville has won the contest each of the past two seasons after Kentucky claimed the four previous meetings. Fourteen of Kentucky’s 39 all-time wins against ranked opponents have come against top-10 teams.
The Wildcats bounced back from a tough start to the season with a tremendous offensive output as Kentucky amassed 675 yards vs. Miami, the program’s third-most total offensive output in school history, and the most in 15 years.
Both Maxwell Smith and Jalen Whitlow saw significant playing time last week against Miami as both topped 100 yards passing. Smith threw for three touchdowns and Whitlow ran for a score. The UK defense allowed no scores on the day holding Miami to just 122 yards of total offense and only 1-of-16 on third downs. The 122 yards allowed is the fourth-lowest offensive output by a UK opponent in the last 25 years.
Cat Scratches: U of L the first of many big games of Stoops era
It took until the final question of his introductory press conference for Mark Stoops to get a question about his new archrival.
Even then - hours after arriving in Lexington on an early-morning flight- Stoops didn't try to downplay the annual showdown with Louisville as just another game on Kentucky's schedule.
"Oh, I know it's a good rivalry," Stoops said in December. "We're going to embrace that rivalry. Really looking forward to it."
Nine months later, the wait is almost over ... read the full preview
Louisville enters Saturday’s game with a No. 7 ranking in both the Associated Press Top 25 and USA Today/ESPN Coaches Poll after defeating Ohio 49-7 in its season opener and EKU 44-7 last weekend. The Cardinals are in their fourth season under head coach Charlie Strong, who has a 27-14 career record. Strong and Co. are coming off a 11-2 season in 2012 that included a trip to the All-State Sugar Bowl, where they defeated Florida. UofL returns 18 starters from last year’’s squad.
Louisville is scoring 46.5 points per game this season while averaging 138.5 yards per game on the ground and 406.5 yards per game in the air. Quarterback Teddy Bridgewater is building off his strong season last year with solid numbers in the first two games on 2013. The junior quarterback has completed 46-of-60 passes this season for 752 yards and nine touchdowns. Senior running back Senorise Perry has 26 rushing attempts for 94 yards and a touchdown, while junior Michael Dyer has 11 rushing attempts for 70 yards and a touchdown. Bridgewater’s leading receivers this year are junior DeVante Parker, who has nine catches for 207 yards and three touchdowns, and senior Damian Copeland, who also has nine catches for 130 yards and three touchdowns.
Defensively, the Cardinals are allowing only 7 points per game, while limiting opponents to 94 rushing yards per game and 145.5 passing yards per game. Senior linebacker Preston Brown leads the team in tackles with 17, including three tackles for loss, two sacks and three quarterback hurries, while sophomore linebacker James Burgess has 15 tackles, two tackles for loss and two pass breakups. Senior safety Hakeem Smith and junior safety Calvin Pryor each have an interception this season, while senior tackle Brandon Dunn is tied for the team lead with three tackles for loss.