A nonprofit publication of the Kentucky Center for Public Service Journalism

Stoops hopeful Kentucky can ‘put it all together’ against Tennessee in pivotal SEC battle

By Keith Taylor Kentucky Today Mark Stoops is hopeful Kentucky can strike a balance when the Wildcats square off against Tennessee on Saturday in Knoxville. The Wildcats (1-2) used a stellar defensive performance to hold off Mississippi State 24-2 last weekend, picking up the slack from the offense, which managed just 157 yards against the Bulldogs. In a 42-41 overtime loss to Ole Miss the previous...

UK hopes ‘change up’ will bring different result in Knoxville against Volunteers on Saturday

By Tim Letcher University of Kentucky Kentucky has played Tennessee in football more times than any other opponent, with the border rivals having met on 115 occasions. In fact, only two Southeastern Conference rivalries have been played more often: Auburn has played Georgia 124 times, and Ole Miss has squared off against Mississippi State on 116 occasions. Tennessee leads the series with UK by a 81-25-9...

Despite 0-2 start, Stoops working to build on positives as UK prepares for Mississippi State

By Tim Letcher University of Kentucky While an 0-2 start is not what Kentucky head coach Mark Stoops and his team were hoping for, it’s also not as bad as it might seem to those who have only seen the team’s scores without watching the games. Stoops and his staff are not searching for a lot of answers. They feel like the Cats are close and that once they get some things cleaned up, the...

Lack of execution at ‘critical moments’ proves costly for Kentucky during 42-41 overtime loss to Ole Miss

By Keith Taylor Kentucky Today Kentucky ran every which way but loose, but it wasn’t enough to carry the Wildcats to victory Saturday in the home opener against Mississippi. An extra point in overtime was the difference as Ole Miss escaped with a 42-41 win over Kentucky, giving Lane Kiffin his first victory as head coach of the Rebels. The Wildcats fell to 0-2 on the season and will seek their first...

UK’s Gran says short tenure under Kiffin at Tennessee ‘one of the scariest times’ of his life

By Keith Taylor Kentucky Today University of Kentucky offensive coordinator Eddie Gran doesn’t remember much about his one-year tenure at Tennessee. Following 14 years on Tommy Tuberville’s staff at Auburn, Gran spent one season at Tennessee, a brief stint, that turned out to be “one of the scariest times” of his life. “I didn’t know anybody real well on that staff.” said Gran, who...

UK faces big challenge of stopping high-powered Ole Miss offense on Saturday in home opener

By Tim Letcher University of Kentucky A week after encountering the fast-paced Auburn offense, Kentucky faces another challenge this Saturday as the Wildcats meet Ole Miss and its high-powered attack in the home opener at 4 p.m. Ole Miss head coach Lane Kiffin and his offenses have always been able to put up big numbers, and that doesn’t look to change as he takes over in Oxford. In Saturday’s...

Stoops: UK mistakes in loss at Auburn ‘very noticeable,’ but correctable as Ole Miss is next

By Keith Taylor Kentucky Today Kentucky doesn’t have much time to dwell on what went wrong in the season opener last weekend at Auburn. After reviewing film from a 29-13 loss to Auburn, UK head coach Mark Stoops said the team’s two turnovers — an interception and a fumble — were “very noticeable” and added “we have to get that corrected” going into Saturday’s home opener against Mississippi. Stoops...

Keith Taylor: Football is back, and it looks like a break-even season for UK against tough SEC

Kentucky will step into unchartered water and right into Southeastern Conference play when the season kicks off this Saturday at Auburn. After weeks and months of debate, the Wildcats will join the rest of the league and provide a dose of normalcy as the nation recovers from a pandemic that has crippled sports and society as a whole since March. What remains to be seen is if the conference can complete...

Jamie Vaught: Let’s try this fearless forecast again — with a revised SEC schedule looming for UK football

More than two months ago, I predicted the University of Kentucky would have a nice football team. I wrote that head coach Mark Stoops’ UK team, with several preseason All-Americans, would be respectable, finishing with a 7-5 mark in a 12-game schedule — and the Wildcats would be making their fifth straight bowl trip. Not bad, but could be better. Well, as you know, COVID-19 pandemic has forced...

UK season opener at Auburn set for noon kickoff on Sept. 26; Wildcats meet Ole Miss at home on Oct. 3

By Keith Taylor Kentucky Today The game times for three of Kentucky’s first four football games have been set. The Wildcats will kick off the season at noon on Sept. 26 at Auburn and will be televised on the SEC Network. Kentucky’s home opener against Ole Miss on Oct. 3 is set for 4 p.m. and also will be televised on the SEC Network. Kentucky’s players are looking forward to the delayed season...

Alabama, Ole Miss fill out UK’s 10-game football schedule; SEC sends Wildcats to Tuscaloosa

By Keith Taylor Kentucky Today The Southeastern Conference has announced the remainder of its football schedule, and Kentucky will visit Alabama and also play host to Ole Miss as part of a 10-game slate this season. The season will begin on Sept. 26 and teams will play 10 games in a 11-week period through Dec. 5. “The two SEC announcements today – the medical protocols and the addition of two...

Cayman Islands Classic relocates to Florida due to pandemic; WKU part of eight-team tournament field

The fourth annual Cayman Islands Classic, which includes Western Kentucky University, has been relocated to Niceville, Fla., in the wake of the COVID-19 pandemic. The tournament will be held Nov. 23-25 at Raider Arena on the campus of Northwest Florida State College. Teams participating in the tournament with Western Kentucky are Kansas State, La Salle, Ole Miss, Miami (Fla.), Nevada, Northern Iowa...

Jamie Vaught: Nearly 35 years later, Cotton Nash still gets autograph requests for Sports Illustrated cover

(Editor’s Note: For the next few months during our national crisis, longtime sports columnist Jamie H. Vaught will be writing about the ex-Wildcats who were featured in one of his first four books on UK basketball, using excerpts that were published in his out-of-print volumes. His latest book – fifth one in a series – was released in late February 2020.) Cotton Nash, a three-time All-American...

Cats set to face surging Ole Miss as they return to Rupp for first weekend home game in four weeks

By Keith Taylor Kentucky Today Kentucky will be spending the weekend at home for the first time in more than a month. Coming off a 78-64 win at Vanderbilt earlier this week, the Wildcats carry a three-game winning streak into Saturday’s game, the team’s first weekend home game since a 76-67 win over Alabama on Jan. 11. Kentucky played its previous four Saturday games on the road and compiled a...

Wildcats learned from loss to Vols, remain confident; setting sights on Tuesday matchup with Ole Miss

By Keith Taylor Kentucky Today Kentucky hasn’t lost its swagger and is moving full speed ahead following a 71-52 loss to Tennessee last weekend in Knoxville. “We’re still confident,” Kentucky freshman guard Keldon Johnson said. “It’s one game — one loss. We will learn from it and we move on to the next game. That next game is at Mississippi Tuesday night, followed by a home...

Calipari doesn’t want Wildcats to revert, overlook Ole Miss in home finale

Shai Gilgeous-Alexander and the Kentucky Wildcats will conclude the home schedule against Ole Miss Wednesday night at Rupp Arena. (Tammie Brown/Kentucky Today) By Keith Taylor Kentucky Today John Calipari doesn’t want his team to get too overconfident going into his team’s home finale against Ole Miss Wednesday night. “(Ole Miss) is good enough to beat us,” Calipari said. “They beat Missouri...

John Robic pre-Ole Miss quotes

Assistant coach John Robic was available for interviews in UK’s typical pre-game presser Monday, this time in preview of Tuesday’s trip to Ole Miss. Questions are in italics and paraphrased for clarity. ** Opening statement: Just to let you know, obviously coming off the game on Saturday night, yesterday was a really, really good day for us as a program. Everybody from the players to the...

No. 18 Kentucky's offensive balance boosting its efficiency through nine league games

Kentucky has found a balance on offense that has made them one of the most efficient offensive teams in the country. (Photo by James Pennington)   As Kentucky’s defense continues to develop, its offense seems to be a mature product halfway in to its conference schedule. The Wildcats’ offense ranks fifth in Division I with a 119.2 adjusted offensive efficiency, according to KenPom.com—which...

No. 18 Kentucky’s offensive balance boosting its efficiency through nine league games

Kentucky has found a balance on offense that has made them one of the most efficient offensive teams in the country. (Photo by James Pennington)   As Kentucky’s defense continues to develop, its offense seems to be a mature product halfway in to its conference schedule. The Wildcats’ offense ranks fifth in Division I with a 119.2 adjusted offensive efficiency, according to KenPom.com—which...

Orlando Antigua quotes: pre-Ole Miss

Orlando Antigua filled in for John Calipari in Monday’s pre-Ole Miss media opportunity. Plenty was said about Kentucky’s struggles in transition defense and the challenge in stopping Marshall Henderson, who the Wildcats see Tuesday at 7 on ESPNU. Questions are in italics and paraphrased for clarity. *** On the defensive problems and what they can do to get better: We’ve been concentrating...