Mark Zerof-USA TODAY Sports

Complete SEC Preview: Kentucky Will Double Their Win Total in 2013


Written by: Austen Tealer and Ross Brown

 

 

Intro

With the way last season went for the Kentucky Wildcats, Lexington is ready for a new beginning. The wildcats finished 2012 with an atrocious record of 2-10, 0-8 in SEC play. Their only wins of the season came against Kent State and Samford. However, things are looking up for the wildcats. The Cats have brought in first year coach, Mark Stoops, to make some changes to their struggling team. Stoops has his work cut out for him as Kentucky plays one of the toughest schedules in the nation. Kentucky will have to battle through the SEC East, and they play Mississippi State and Alabama, from the West. The Wildcats are also faced with a tough non conference game against Louisville.

Key Departures

  • Collins Ukwu (Defensive End)
  • Taylor Wyndham (Defensive End)

Key Returns

  • Maxwell Smith (Quarterback)
  • Avery Williamson (Middle Linebacker)
  • Bud Dupree (Defensive End)

Offense

Grade: F-

The return of QB Maxwell Smith should be beneficial to this year’s offense. However, with the lack of talent surrounding him, don’t expect the Wildcats offensive to improve much from 2012, where they were ranked 13th in the SEC.

Defense

Grade: D-

Kentucky is down to five starters, from 2012. They lost many key pieces to a defense that was better than three teams in the SEC. The returning starters just don’t have the talent to pick up the slack, and the defense will decline.

Special Teams

Grade: D

Landon Foster has solidified his position as the starting punter, but that is the only thing set in stone for the Wildcat’s special teams in 2013. Foster was fifth among freshman punters averaging 42.9 yards a punt. The place kicker could be true freshman Austin MacGinnis. Macginnis had a great high school career but that doesn’t always translate to collegiate success. Demarco Robinson and Demarcus Sweat are the best options for returns.

Overall

Grade: F

Kentucky will be much improved with coach Mark Stoops at the helm. Unfortunately for Wildcat fans, this is Kentucky football. Expect them to win four games this year, doubling last year’s total.

 

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Tags: Football Kentucky Wildcats LSU Tigers Mark Stoops