Kentucky vs. Florida
Saturday, 12:21 p.m. ET
Ben Hill Griffin Stadium, Gainesville, Fla.
Record: 1-2, 0-0 SEC
Ranking: Not ranked
Last game: L, 31-32 vs. Western Kentucky (H)
Coach: Joker Phillips (Kentucky, 1986)
Record: 12-16 (Third season)
at UK: 12-16 (Third season)
vs. UF: 0-2
Series Record vs. Florida:
Overall: UF leads 45-17
in Gainesville: UF leads 25-4
Record: 3-0, 2-0 SEC
Ranking: No. 14 AP / No. 14 ESPN/USA Today
Last game: W, 37-20 at #23 Tennessee (A)
Coach: Will Muschamp (Georgia, 1994)
Record: 10-6 (Second season)
at UF: Same
vs. UK 1-0
UK's last win over Florida: 1986 (10-3)
UK's last win in Gainesville: 1979 (31-3)
9/02 at #25 Louisville (ESPN) L, 14-32
9/08 Kent State (CSS) W, 47-14
9/15 WESTERN KENTUCKY (ESPNU) L, 31-32
9/01 Bowling Green W, 27-14
9/08 at Texas A&M W, 20-17
9/15 at Tennessee W, 37-20
TV • SEC NETWORK
Play-by-Play Dave Neal
Analyst Andre Ware
Sideline Cara Capuano
RADIO • UK IMG SPORTS NETWORK
Play-by-Play Tom Leach
Analyst Jeff Piecoro
Sideline Dick Gabriel
Channel 136 – Sirius
Channel 199 – XM
INTERNET/RADIO • www.UKathletics.com
KEYS TO THE GAME:
WHEN KENTUCKY HAS THE BALL… The Wildcats' no-huddle offense needs to dictate tempo and execute long drives against the Gators. They want to cap those drives with points, but even on occasions when they can't do that, it's important to win possession battle and keep the struggling UK defense off the field. Maxwell Smith has to bounce back mentally from his four-interception game against Western Kentucky and help the Cats "play clean," as the UK staff likes to say. The Cats are 9-1 under Joker Phillips when they have fewer turnovers than the opponent. Kentucky's offensive line has been a strength this season, and the Gators have recorded only five sacks through three games, so Smith and the receiver corps should have opportunities to make plays.
WHEN FLORIDA HAS THE BALL… The Cats simply must do a better job in the front seven of getting off blocks and wrapping up ball-carriers. If they don't, the Gators will run wild in this one. Florida is coming off an impressive 336-yard rushing effort against Tennessee. Mike Gillislee (5-11, 209) leads the SEC and ranks 20th nationally at 115.3 rushing yards per game. The dynamic senior is averaging 6.1 yards per carry. The Cats must be good against the Gators on first down in order to put Florida quarterback Jeff Driskel in more passing situations.
• Senior wide receiver La'Rod King has 1,432 career receiving yards and needs 51 more to tie Tom Hutchinson for ninth place on the UK career list. He has 15 touchdowns and needs one more to move into sole possession of sixth place on UK's career TD list.
• This marks the fourth straight year UK has met the Gators in its SEC opener. UF has won 25 consecutive games against the Wildcats dating back to the 1987 season. UK's last win over Florida was a 10-3 victory in Lexington in 1986.
• Kentucky ranks in the top 40 of three national statistical categories, including 13th in passing offense (322), 20th in kickoff returns (27.70) and 38th in sacks allowed (1.33).
• The Wildcats are looking for their first win over a ranked opponent since upsetting No. 10 South Carolina in 2010 in Commonwealth Stadium, 31-28. UK's last win over a ranked Florida team was a 28-9 decision in 1976. The Gators were ranked No. 15.
• Senior defensive linebacker/end Taylor Wyndham and junior tailback Jonathan George will be game captains on Saturday. Wyndham had a career-high seven tackles for UK last weekend, while also recording a sack, two tackles for loss and a pass breakup. George led Kentucky offensively in the game with three touchdowns – two rushing and one receiving. They will join permanent game captains Matt Smith and Collins Ukwu at the pregame coin toss.
Both sides are doing their best not to think about the 25-game winning streak Florida has over…