UK looks to get well against Middle Tennessee

UK looks to get well against Middle Tennessee
Coach Mark Stoops on Saturday will lead his Kentucky Wildcats at Kroger Field for the final time this season.

LEXINGTON, KY (WAVE) - It’s a Saturday in the middle of November, and you know what that means.

It’s the SEC’s annual late-season gimme weekend, when its football teams beat up on weak sisters. Out of the 11 games involving SEC teams Saturday, eight of them are against squads like The Citadel (at Alabama), Liberty (at Auburn) and Chattanooga (at South Carolina).

Kentucky gets a visit from Middle Tennessee, which, truth be told, is a pretty decent team. The Blue Raiders are 7-3 overall and although they toil in Conference USA, they have a chance to win their division and play in the league’s title game on Dec. 1.

UK (7-3, 5-3 SEC) needs some offense. Plain and simple. The Wildcats have averaged 13.4 points per game in their last five outings, and have scored more than 28 points in a game twice this season.

Running back Benny Snell, who was on some Heisman lists through the first month of the season, has faded in the second half, topping the 100-yard mark only one time since he did it Sept. 22. He still has surpassed the 1,000-yard mark for the third straight season.

Kentucky has won games with defense this year, but even that unit has been exposed some in UK’s last two games. An all-the-marbles loss to Georgia two weeks ago may have deflated the Cats, who were aiming to win the SEC East until the Bulldogs handled them in Lexington. Kentucky followed up that 34-17 setback with a lackluster 24-7 loss at Tennessee last week.

Despite consecutive league losses, the Wildcats can still win 10 games this season if it can win out and claim a bowl win.

Middle Tennessee quarterback Brent Stockstill, son of head coach Rick Stockstill, completes nearly 70 percent of his passes and boasts an impressive 21-to-5 touchdown-to-interception ratio. He’s thrown for 580 yards, six touchdowns and no interceptions in his last two games. The Blue Raiders have won four straight.

Middle Tennessee’s seventh road game of the season will be its third at an SEC school; it lost at Vanderbilt in Week 1 and Georgia in Week 3 by a combined scored of 84-14.

Senior Day kickoff is scheduled for noon at Kroger Field.

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