Tides Are Turning in the Bluegrass

If you would have told me that Kentucky Football was beating LSU, Alabama, Michigan, and even Louisville in recruiting, I would not believe you, not at all. But it’s a different feel in Lexington these days and that is mainly due to Vince Marrow and Mark Stoops. In November 2012, Mark Stoops took over the program and it started off very rocky. In his first year he went 2-10 and then followed it up with two straight 5-7 seasons, barely missing bowl season. Everyone was calling for Mark’s head, including myself but I am forever thankful that Mitch trusts himself more so than the passionate Big Blue Nation.

After his first three years of going a combined 12-24, he started his 2016 season with another disappointing 0-2 before he turned it around. He finished up going up 7-5 defeating Lamar Jackson and the Louisville Cardinals in the best way possible. This was followed by another 7-6 season due to another bowl loss and we all know what happened this past season, 10-3 with a Citrus Bowl victory over Penn State. Stoops has given Kentucky fans a wild ride, but the actual ride is only beginning. Which brings us to yesterday.

COLLEGE FOOTBALL: JAN 01 Citrus Bowl - Kentucky v Penn State

Yesterday, Kentucky Football stole a recruit right from Michigan. In quite possibly one of the deepest, coolest commitment videos of all time, Kalil Branham announced his intentions to join the 2020 squad. Check it out here if you missed it. He said he always felt connected to the Blue, but got it wrong with his first choice and God showed him the way to the Big Blue Nation when everyone, including his coaches, shunned him after deciding Michigan. The four star has drawn comparisons to Lynn Bowden but either way he is a huge get for Kentucky.

We had another Yahtzee yesterday in the form of 4-Star Defensive End Samuel Anaele who was drawing interest from Florida, Georgia, Michigan, and Oregon. Just take that in for a minute…Kentucky is beating out the top teams in recruiting and their doing it while trying to build a program at the same time. A team that is second fiddle to Basketball is soon becoming their equal counterpart and a huge part of it is due to Mark Stoops and Vince Marrow. Kentucky is now ranked 22nd in terms of recruiting for the 2020 class and there are so many more on the way. Let’s keep it moving and let’s prove everyone wrong.

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Kash Daniel Has a Message to the Haters

Disrespect is a key term that will pop up with this Kentucky Football team time and time again. First it was Phil Steele prediciting this team would not make a bowl game, then it was Terry Wilson being ranked last in the SEC by some goof at ESPN, next it was Phil Steele again being an idiot by saing Kentucky will go 5-7, and lastly they have set the over/under for the Football squad at 6 games. Well that is what officially set off Kash Daniel as he was recorded yesterday saying some kind words about their decisions…

Kentucky Football is coming off their best season in years. Their defense may be weaker but it starts with Kash Daniel. The senior linebacker recorded 82 tackles last season (including assist) and a sack. He played through multiple injuries including a broken hand and he has as much passion as anyone who has ever played at Kentucky. Kash will lead this team into the trenches and he strives off of the hate. Kash will lead us above the six wins they say we’ll get and he will lead us right back into the top 25.

Bottom line is that Kentucky, yet again, has been given no respect. Sure, it’s frustrating, but the cats thrive in the underdog role. At least, the last couple of years. Mark Stoops has proven time and time again that BBN is not something to mess with. He has shown that he can make something out of nothing putting 2-star recruits in the NFL. It will be interesting to see what he can do with one of the best recruiting class in UK history.

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Please Keep Hating on the Cats, More Disrespect

As a Kentucky fan, we’re not used to having a talented football team year in and year out. But this is our chance to build Kentucky football into a respectful and dangerous team, especially coming off a 10-3 season and a Citrus Bowl victory. On the offensive end, Kentucky lost essentially Benny but they placed him with Smoke and Rose. Our defensive may be weaker due to losing pretty much our most important assets but to say that they’ll fall from 10-3 to 5-7 is just so disrespectful. Phil Steele is a idiot, the same idiot that said Missouri would make a bowl game even though they’re banned. Kentucky has the chance to be something special, so let’s take a look at how they can be.

First off, their schedule is a tad easier than last season. They have their rivals, Louisville, Florida, and Tennessee at home while traveling to Mississippi State, Georgia, and South Carolina. Kentucky will win four of those six games…with losses probably coming to Georgia and Mississippi State if I had to guess. But our good pal Phil claims Kentucky will only win five games and he states that the loss of our defense is too major to recover yet Mark Stoops has had an inexperienced defense every season besides last and we’ve still been able to reach the seven wins. But this year is different, mainly because our offense is so much better.

Image result for aj rose kentucky

Terry Wilson has what it takes to be an elite quarterback. He is tall, athletic, and can run the RPO offense which the NFL seems to be leaning towards. He has the arm to make the downfield threat but you really never know where his ball will go. He has experienced the lowest of lows, including his season opener against Central Michigan where he went 11-18 with only 78 yards and 2 interceptions but he also has had his highlights when he beat Florida at the Swamp by throwing two touchdowns and running for one more. Terry has shown he has what it takes, especially against Kentucky’s rival opponents. To say he is the worst quarterback in the SEC after he led Kentucky into the Swamp to defeat Franks and the Gators to end a long streak. To have Franks ranked above Terry is just as disrespectful as having Terry last.

If you look at Terry’s stats last season, the games he struggled in seemed to be the games that Benny excelled (minus Louisville where everyone killed it). Benny Snell was the best running back to come through Kentucky, we will not find another like him for a while. But what Kentucky does have is AJ Rose. AJ perfectly complements Terry. He is not the elite runner that Benny was, but he has the ability to be more effective in the passing game. No offense to Benny at all, like I said he was the best Kentucky has had, but he struggled in the passing game. Rose will perfectly complement Terry due to his ability to turn upfield and be more of a dual threat where Benny would just run over everyone.

So as the disrespect rolls in, let’s just remember this team. Last year they were underrated and they strived on proving everyone wrong…I have a feeling it will be the same this year. So call Terry the worst in the SEC, say they won’t be in a bowl game, say they’ll only win five games…because at the end of the day this team will again prove everyone wrong and we’ll all be able to laugh at the joke Phil Steele is.

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CJ Conrad’s Uncertain Road to the NFL

Despite being one of the highest rated prospects at tight end for the 2019 NFL Draft, CJ Conrad from Kentucky went undrafted. Due to an enlarged pulmonary artery in his heart discovered in his physical examination, Conrad was not even allowed to participate in the NFL Combine.

Several weeks later, a second opinion found the medical issue to not be as significant as once thought and he was declared eligible to play in the NFL. The Giants may not have made the smartest decisions during the draft, but they made one hell of a pick up afterwards, signing Conrad as an undrafted free agent.

Image result for cj conrad giants

The weeks between the diagnosis and the second opinion had to have been some of the hardest of Conrad’s life. But anyone who knows him will say that his positive attitude carried him though. He was even positive about his future regardless of if included football or not, telling his parents, “No matter what happens, I’m a college graduate, things will work out the way they will and I’ll be successful no matter what happens.” (USA Today). That’s one of the most mature, glass-half-full outlooks you’ll hear from an NFL prospect.

And now that football will most certainly be his future, his attitude is what will keep him there and make coaching staffs fall in love with him. Even missing out on thousands of dollars from being undrafted, Conrad is still optimistic that he will make the Giants 53 man roster.

The road that led CJ Conrad to the NFL had to be one of the most emotional of anyone in his class. One second he was a top TE prospect and the next he was never going play in the NFL. That couple week span between his first and second opinions had to have been emotionally devastating. He probably even thought about applying for a couple coaching jobs. The mental fortitude he needed to stay confident that everything would work out fine shows just how strong of a person he really is.

Good luck on the Giants, CJ. All of BBN is rooting for you.

Remember When Kentucky Knocked Off #1 LSU in Overtime

The year was 2007. T-Pain wanted to Buy U a Drank, Soulja Boy just taught us how to Crank Dat and Kentucky was about to have their most successful football seasons in a long while. Achieving a 5-1 record and #17 national ranking led the Cats to their biggest test. The #1 LSU Tigers came to Lexington for a battle they did not expect. Kentucky, however, came ready to play.

It was back and forth all game. The Kentucky greats solidified their place in Kentucky history. Names like Andre Woodson, Derrick Locke, Stevie Johnson, Jacob Tamme, Dickie Lyons Jr. and Trevard Lindley all played pivotal roles in knocking off the best team in the country. Relive the whole game here:

The craziest part about this game is that LSU actually had a quarterback that was capable of throwing the ball in Matt Flynn. And even he was no match for the secondary led by Trevard Lindley. Only posting 130 yards to Andre Woodson’s 250.

This team was destined for so much more. Reaching as high as #8 in the rankings, this Kentucky team ended up unranked with a 7-5 record. Eleven year old Wic watching this game though Kentucky was going to at least the SEC Championship, if not a BCS bowl. But Kentucky football is going to Kentucky football, especially before the Mark Stoops era.

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