The Kentucky Wildcats got their SEC season off to the perfect start with a win over Mizzou last weekend. Next up for the 2-0 ‘Cats is the visit of the 1-1 Chattanooga Mocs. Here are the three keys to the UK win.
By Steve Wright
1 – Work on the turnover margin
Kentucky has done plenty right in the 2-0 start but just think how good the Wildcats would be if they weren’t sitting at -4 in the country – which would be next to last – in turnover margin. The Wildcats have picked up just one interception, but they have thrown two picks and fumbled away the ball three times. This is a team with the firepower under quarterback Will Levis to overcome turnover issues, but it would be nice to see Kentucky hold onto the ball for once.
2 – Keep Chris Rodriguez rolling
This is an interesting spot for the Wildcats and running back Chris Rodriguez. The Mocs have enough about them on defense to pose a few problems, but before long the SEC class of Kentucky will show through. Rodriguez had a career-high 206 yards against Mizzou – giving the powerful runner 331 yards in two games – and Kentucky will certainly need his ball-carrying ability in bigger games than this one. Get Rodriguez some touches early to keep him ticking over and build a lead before putting in the backups in the second half.
3 – Get the defense firing
In the opener, the defense was what we have come to expect from a Mark Stoops unit. Against Mizzou, however, there were some perhaps unexpected issues on the defensive side of the ball. This game comes at a great time to work on this against a Chattanooga team that went for just 228 against Austin Peay. Third down should be a particular area of interest and I would like to see Kentucky holding the Mocs below 25% on those occasions.