Welcome back friends. We’re glad that you’ve made it here for another round of This Week in Wildcat History!
Most likely, you’re here because you are a University of Kentucky Wildcat football fan. By virtue of that, it should come as no surprise that, much like some of the streaks that we’ve talked about during the past few weeks, there are certain ghosts in Kentucky’s football closet that we just aren’t particularly proud of. You know, kind of like that crazy cousin that you have.
In a lot of ways, the 5th game of Kentucky’s football season is very similar to that crazy cousin you’re thinking of. You know it’s going to find a way to show up every year, yet no matter what colors it disguises itself in this time around, and no matter where the meeting takes place, you can almost always count on leaving with a sour taste in your mouth each and every time you’re together.
Well folks, it looks like the holidays are upon us.
As you well know by now, the 5th game of the 2010 Kentucky football season will commence on Saturday shortly after 11:00 in the fine southern town of Oxford, Mississippi, when the University of Mississippi Rebels play host to our heroes in blue. The Cats enter Saturday’s contest having lost the 5th game on their schedule during both of the previous two seasons. Those two losses, on the road in both Tuscaloosa and Columbia, came by a combined 5 points.
On top of that, Kentucky enters Satuday’s SEC showdown having lost the 5th game on their schedule during 15 of their previous 20 seasons. Needless to say, game number five is another trend we’d all love to see reversed with regard to Kentucky football.
The 5th game of the 1997 season, however, brought tears to the eyes of Kentucky fans for a far different reason than those referenced above. It was during that game – on October 4, 1997 – that Tim Couch found Craig Yeast down the left hashes for a 40-34 overtime victory over the Alabama Crimson Tide. The game marked only the second victory in Kentucky’s history over the Tide and the first time in the history of Commonwealth Stadium that the home crowd had the pleasure of removing the goalposts from the air above the endzones.
During the last 50 years, Kentucky has played on October 2nd on eight different occasions, splitting those contests with four wins and four losses. For those of you keeping score at home, the only 10/2 matchup in the past half century between the Cats and the Rebels from Oxford was a 1993 tilt that saw Kentucky emerge victorious by a final score of 21-0. So, we’ve got that going for us, which is nice.
That 1993 matchup was one of 20 times that Kentucky and Ole Miss have met on the gridiron since 1964. During that span, the Rebels hold a slight advantage over the Cats, having won 12 times to Kentucky’s 8.
In recent years, the great state of Mississippi and its lovely residents have been very good to this guy, and I hope that – beginning next week – the season finds a way to turn itself around for the good people in Oxford. On Saturday, however, I’d love nothing more than for Kentucky to roll in and out of town like that crazy cousin, leaving behind the sourest of tastes for the home team and its fans.
Until next week.