Kentucky-Tennessee: Cats Look To End Skid Against Volunteers

Nathan TowlesCorrespondent INovember 27, 2008

It has been a long time since Kentucky has beat Tennessee. Matter of fact it has been 24 long, enduring years since Kentucky has won.

A lot has changed since Kentucky beat Tennessee in 1984. That is Kentucky having losing seasons in most and being put on probation by the NCAA.

Tennessee was up for most of the past 24 years, including winning a National Championship, but has been down recently. They will miss a bowl game for the second time in four years and the worst season since 1977. The season has been so bad for Tennessee that they have already fired coach Phillip Fulmer.

For Kentucky, it has been a up and down season. After starting 4-0, Kentucky has lost five out of the last seven games. The injuries finally took a toll on the cats. One goal, before the season started, was to reach six wins and get to a third straight bowl. That goal was a success.

This game Saturday will be a bowl game for Tennessee. They will have more to play for. They are hoping to send coach Fulmer out with a win, and keep the streak alive.

The University of Tennessee offense depth chart:

  • TE: Luke Stocker (6'6", 245, So.), Jeff Cottam (6'8", 260, Jr.)
  • LT: Chris Scott (6'5", 310, Jr.), Ramone Johnson (6'5", 315, So.)
  • LG: Vladimir Richard (6'4", 300, Jr.), Jarrod Shaw (6'4", 330, So.)
  • C: Josh McNeil (6'4", 280, Jr.), Cody Sullins (6'1", 285, Jr.)
  • RG: Anthony Parker (6'3", 300, Sr.), Jacques McClendon (6'3", 320, Jr.)
  • RT: Ramon Foster (6'6", 325, Sr.), Jarrod Shaw (6'4", 330, So.)
  • WR: Austin Rogers (6'2", 185, Jr.), Josh Briscoe (6'3", 183, Jr.)
  • WR: Gerald Jones (6'0", 185, So.), Quintin Hancock (6'3", 200, Jr.)
  • WR: Lucas Taylor (6'0" 185, Sr.), Denarius Moore (6'1", 185, Jr.)
  • QB: B.J. Coleman (6'3", 210, Fr.), Jonathan Crompton (6'4", 220, Jr.)
  • TB: Arian Foster (6'1", 215, Sr.), Montario Hardesty (6'0", 210, Jr.)
  • FB: Kevin Cooper (6'0", 240, So.), Austin Johnson (6'2", 242, Fr.)

University of Tennessee defense depth chart:

  • LE: Wes Brown (6'4", 256, Jr.), Chris Walker (6'3", 230, So.)
  • LT: Demonte Bolden (6'6", 290, Sr.), Walter Fisher (6'3", 275, Sr.)
  • RT: Dan Williams (6'3", 310, Jr.), Walter Fisher (6'3", 275, Sr.)
  • RE: Robert Ayers (6'3", 270, Sr.), Ben Martin (6'3", 240, So.)
  • SLB: Nevin McKenzie (6'2", 215, Sr.), Adam Myers-White (6'2", 215, Sr.)
  • MLB: Ellix Wilson (5'10", 225, Sr.), Nick Reveiz (5'10", 225, So.)
  • WLB: Rico McCoy (6'1", 215, Jr.), Savion Frazier (6'2", 210, So.)
  • LCB: DeAngelo Willingham (6'0", 200, Sr.), Brent Vinson (6'0", 190, So.)
  • RCB: Dennis Rogan (5'10", 185, So.), Marcalous Johnson (5'9", 180, Jr.)
  • FS: Demetrice Morley (6'2", 195, Jr.), Prentiss Waggner (6'2", 170, Fr.)
  • SS: Eric Berry (5'11", 195, So.), Anthony Anderson (6'1", 180, Fr.)

University of Tennessee special teams:

  • PR: Gerald Jones (6'0", 185, So.)
  • KR: Dennis Rogan (5'10", 185, So.), Lennon Creer (6'1", 210, So.)
  • P: Britton Colquitt (6'3", 205, Sr.), Chad Cunningham (6'3", 210, So.)
  • PK: Daniel Lincoln (6'0", 204, So.)
  • SN: Morgan Cox (6'4", 225, Jr.)
  • HOL: Bram Cannon (6'2", 185, Jr.)

Volunteers to watch:

  • Arian Foster was probably the second best back in the SEC going into this season. Foster has had a slow year due to the lack of offense for Tennessee and his fumbling issues.
  • Eric Berry has had a excellent year for a down Tennessee team. He has 11 career interceptions. He is a dangerous defensive player. He will also play on the offense side of the ball, either as a receiver or the quarterback.
  • Rico McCoy has had a down year on defense if you compare it to his totals last year. He does have the experience to be a play maker.
  • Robert Ayers can get some pressure on the quarterback, but not as much as Tennessee was hoping for this season.

Some of the talk this week has been about the streak, but most of the talk has been about current Kentucky wildcat, Randall Cobb. Cobb is a Tennessee native that was not recruited by his state school until the last minute.

Cobb is talking and acting like a senior in a true freshman body. He doesn't hold that against Tennessee. "It's time to let that recruiting stuff go," Cobb said to the Herald-Leader. "We're too far into it to start talking about recruiting. That's nothing to me anymore. I'm a Kentucky Wildcat. Once I signed those papers, it was over. There are no hard feelings."

His teammates think different. "I think he wants to go down there, end the streak and score three touchdowns," Alfonso Smith said to the Herald-Leader. "I don't think all that talk is real. He wants this game. I can see it in his eyes in practice. It seems like he's focused, and he's ready."

Coach Rich Brooks and company knows that this game will be won in the first half. Both teams have started the games very poorly this year. Tennessee has yet to score on its opening drive and Kentucky has only got a field goal on there opening drive.

Kentucky must get back to how they played against Georgia on Nov. 8. They will need to bring out the pony package and run all over the Tennessee defense. Force them to stop them. Keep them honest by throwing the ball.

Kentucky's quarterback situation is not a situation. Cobb has proved that he is the man. Tennessee, on the other hand, has had a horrible quarterback situation. They have yet to settle on just one. They have used many players in one spot, including safety Eric Berry in the last game.

Last week against Vanderbilt, Tennessee only throw the ball nine times for 27 yards. They will probably throw the ball more and keep the running game going strong yet again. They man handled Vanderbilt on both offense and defense.

Kentucky was off last week and is rested. They will be again without some of the main players on defense. The most notable is Jeremy Jarmon. The reserves must come in and play as if he was alongside them.

Tennessee will be playing very hard for the coach that was forced out. It will be hard for Kentucky to go to Neyland Stadium and win. It can be done. Wyoming went there and won on Nov. 8.

Throw out any predictions for this game. It will be hard to choose who will win this game. It will be Kentucky versus a streak and a tearful goodbye. Over 100,000 strong will be up and rowdy for the burnt orange.


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