Kentucky Wildcats vs. Louisville Cardinals
It’s the battle of the Bluegrass State as the Kentucky Wildcats host the Louisville Cardinals in Lexington. The Wildcats are -7 point favorites over the Cardinals with an over/under point total set at 52.
The Kentucky Wildcats haven’t looked solid yet this season yet as they head into week three Joker Phillips’ team is undefeated. Morgan Newton has struggled running the offense completing just 16 passes for 211 yards with two touchdowns and four interceptions. Running back Josh Clemmons has rushed for 165 yards and two touchdowns and Raymond Sanders has rushed for 97 yards. When Newton does complete a pass his likely target is La’Rod King who has seven catches for 142 yards and two touchdowns. After allowing just three points their first game Kentucky trailed by seven at the half but the Cats shut down CMU and held them scoreless in the second half to get the win. The competition level steps up again in this emotional battle but with a win UK can be half way to bowl eligibility.
It’s year two of Charlie Strong’s tenure as Head Coach of the Louisville Cardinals and while the team made big strides last season it is already apparent that there are going to be some harsh growing pains along the way. After beating Murray state 21-9 in week one the Cardinals were beaten on National TV by and upstart FIU team that exposed some big holes on Louisville. QB Will Stein completed 30 of 43 passes for 349 yards with two touchdowns and an interception but he still looked lost at times and Teddy Bridgewater came in to relieve him but while Bridgewater is highly touted it’s clear he is way too raw to contribute now. Jeremy Wright and Victor Anderson split time in the backfield with Wright gaining 54 yards and Anderson gaining 29. John Cichester caught six passes for 111 yards and Michaelee Harris caught six for 79 with each of them grabbing a touchdown but Louisville was playing from behind most of the night. While Strong is regarded as one of the best defensive minds in the game he defense was gouged for long passing plays where players were out of position and mismatches were exploited where linebackers were covering number one wide receivers. While Louisville will be looking at the tape the question remains of do they have the talent to fix the problems.
Kentucky is 2-6 against the spread in their last eight games overall, 6-2 against the spread in their last eight games as a favorite, and 1-3-1 against the spread in their last five home games as a favorite of 3.5 to 10 points. Louisville is 7-1 against the spread in their last eight road games, 31-12 against the spread in their last 43 non-conference games, and 2-5 against the spread in their last seven games as an underdog.
Laying seven points with a team whose offense is as unreliable as Kentucky’s isn’t a great option but Louisville has some real issues and I can see Kentucky’s defense wreaking havoc.
Kentucky Wildcats -7 Louisville Cardinals