Smiting the Gators: An Anatomy

We’ve been close. I was there in 2003, sitting in the student section at Commonwealth Stadium, when Jared Lorenzen temporarily lost his mind and threw that ridiculous interception that sealed our doom. Commonwealth went from




In the post below I showed you what I think beating Florida would feel like. Now I intend to show you what it’ll look like. If it’s going to happen, there are things I have to see from Kentucky. I’m not talking about the things empty suits like Mark May or Jesse Palmer say before every game (“The blitzes have to get home, Reese.” “Kentucky has to value the football, Reese.” “Patrick Towles has got to have time to throw the football, Reese.” “Tie knots equal Twitter followers, Reese.”)

Okay, yeah. The blitzes have to get home. We can’t turn the ball over. Pony in his boots (especially). But I’m talking about the things I literally want to see. In my lifetime, I can only remember one Kentucky team taking the field against Florida with the body language of a team who looked like they expected to win. The 2007 team, fresh off a landmark 3OT victory over top-ranked LSU, welcomed both College Gameday and the Florida Gators to Commonwealth Stadium, and despite clearly not playing with a full tank of gas, the Cats outgained and outworked the Gators, but big plays from Tebow and Co. proved too much to overcome.

Comparing this Kentucky team to that 2007 team is admittedly a stretch, but it’s not a bigger stretch than comparing this Florida team to the one Urban Meyer and Tim Tebow brought to Lexington in 2007.

Mark Stoops today said he was “furious” and "outraged" over Jojo Kemp’s guarantee of a Cats victory Saturday.

Guess who wasn’t “furious” or “outraged.” Me. I’m “furious” and “outraged” that this GD streak has lasted 27 f#cking years.

POWER STANCE: Jojo Kemp is right, and I love the confidence—as long as he backs it up in the Swamp Saturday. It’s the only way. I want to see a Kentucky team walk into the Swamp, look Florida in the eye, and throw the first punch. And I don’t want to see them stop swinging until the plane taking them back to Lexington flies over Keeneland. Because I’ve never seen a Kentucky team hit Florida first, and I want to see how Florida will respond to a team they rightly count as a win every year walking in and sticking them on the chin. I just want to see it.

I want to see Kentucky take the field one of two ways: out of their GD minds or with the thousand-yard stare Michael Kidd-Gilchrist had after losing to Vanderbilt in the 2012 SEC Championship game.

This is what I imagine an axe murder looks like pre-spree.

OK, now that Kentucky has taken the field like a tribe of wild-eyed conquering visigoths wielding big f#cking clubs and hand plucked sabertooth tiger fangs, I want to see Kentucky bump noses with Florida. I want to hear them growl. And I want to see how hard they hit.

Florida has played one game this year—against Eastern Michigan who, trust me, is dreadful. Offensively bad, and I’m not talking about the kind of offense with quarterbacks and wide receivers. I’m talking about it offends me how bad Eastern Michigan is, and Florida isn’t going to be ready for the physicality of this Kentucky team. This Kentucky defense, through two games, is unlike any Kentucky defense I’ve ever seen. They swarm. They play angry. When they hit someone, that someone stops. I want to see that not only continue, but also intensify. A couple unnecessary roughness penalties won’t ruin my day. I’m not talking about injuring someone. I’m talking about hurting them just enough to where they have to stay in the game—even though they don’t want to.

On offense, I want to see the Air Raid stay on the runway for a little bit. I want to see Kentucky push Florida off the line of scrimmage. I want to see Braylon Heard hit the second level of Florida’s undeniably ferocious defense. I want to see Kentucky match that ferocity with speed, with piss, and with vinegar.

That’s it, those are things I want to see: a Kentucky team that takes the field with the body language of a team who expects to win, the anger of a team who gives zero effs about the cursive on Florida’s helmets, the scowl of their insane head coach.

It’s time this sh!t ended. I’m sick of it, and I know you are, too. So let’s be angry together. #ConqerTheSwamp #YearOfTheWildcat