Little comfort in Louisville’s win over Kentucky

There would be no blowout.

Uncomfortable feeling all game long, with all the enthusiasm on the Kentucky side of the ball, the Wildcats driven by emotion.

Fortunately, the game is 60 minutes.

The adrenaline level of UK’s defensive line, dropping like a lead balloon in the second half. Teddy Bridgewater not letting them off the field, draining them of the extra motivation, exposing their soft spots and flaws, tiring them out.

The adrenaline level of UK's defensive line, dropping like a lead balloon in the second half.

Probably the difference in the University of Louisville’s 27-13 win over Kentucky, those tired defensive linemen and all the passes dropped by the UK receivers, only 17 receptions out of 37 attempts.

Finally getting some rhythm as the third half begins, Bridgewater completing four of five passes, his running backs finally getting some running room, marching 83 in nine plays for a touchdown. Senorise Perry contributing 35 rushing yards and a touchdown.

Settling for a field goal on the second possession, a 21-yarder by John Wallace, after the old reliable Bridgewater to DaVante Parker pass combination falls short for the third or fourth time in the game. But Teddy would find Damian Copeland for 47 and Gerald Christian for 24 while Dominique Brown and Perry were good for 11 each.

The running game was firmly on track the final touchdown drive, all the yards on the ground with Dyer good for 24, Senorise Perry for 36, and Bridgewater himself adding 23 yards in an 83-yard drive.

UK seemed within an onside kick of getting back in the game until the 1:30 mark, threatening on UofL’s 18-yard line. But Lorenzo Mauldin simply wasn’t going to allow that to happen, finally breaking the protection on fourth down to sack Wildcat quarterback for a nine-yard loss.

A solid defensive effort, with UofL holding UK to only 376 yards offensively while forcing three turnovers, including two fumbles and an interception. Preston Brown, James Burgess, Terrell Floyd and Hakeem Smith in on a combined 26 tackles.

Not to be forgotten is that interception by Charles Gaines in the third quarter denying UK a touchdown. Six or seven points at that point could have quickly re-energized a team desperate to pin a loss on the nation’s seventh-ranked team.

Too close to being close.

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Author: Charlie Springer

Charlie Springer is a former Louisville editor and sportswriter, as well as a public affairs consultant, a UofL grad and longtime fan.

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