LOUISVILLE – November 27, 2021
Kentucky closes the 2021 regular season with a trip to Louisville on Saturday night looking to claim the Governor’s Cup for the third straight meeting. Game time is 7:30 p.m. ET and it will air on ESPN2 and the UK Sports Network.
The Wildcats are looking to extend their non-conference winning streak to 15 games, which is the second-longest active streak in the country. A win also would give UK nine wins in the regular season for the second time since 1977 (both under coach Mark Stoops, 2018).
Offensively, the Wildcats have been guided by quarterback Will Levis, who is completing 65.8 percent of his passes for 2,444 yards and 23 touchdowns. Levis’ top target has been Wan’Dale Robinson, who is among the leading receivers in the nation with 85 catches for 1,067 yards and six TDs. The ground game has been paced by Christopher Rodriguez Jr., who has rushed for 1,151 yards and seven scores, and he ranks second in the league in rushing with 104.9 yards per game. The trio is just the second in school history to reach 2,000 yards passing, 1,000 rushing and 1,000 receiving in the same season.
The Kentucky defense has been exceptional at times in 2021, with linebackers DeAndre Square and Jacquez Jones leading the team in tackles, while safety Yusuf Corker and defensive end Josh Paschal are among the SEC leaders in pass breakups and tackles for loss, respectively.
|Kentucky at Louisville|
|Sat., Nov. 27 – 7:30 p.m. ET|
Game Notes: UK (PDF) | UL (PDF)
Digital Gameday Program
Radio: UK Sports Network
|17.0||Kickoff returns (avg)||21.6|
|10.7||Punt returns (avg)||10.9|
|31:53||Time of possession/game||31:35|
|50.8%||Third down conversion||39.7%|
|38.5%||Fourth down conversion||54.6%|
|335.7||Total yards allowed/game||391.8|
|115.5||Rush yards allowed/game||138.0|
|220.3||Pass yards allowed/game||253.8|
Cat Scratches: Stoops, Cats Prepare for Renewal of Rivalry on Saturday
After not playing last season due to COVID-19 restrictions, Kentucky and Louisville will renew their intrastate rivalry on Saturday at Cardinal Stadium.
Kentucky has won the last two games between the teams and three of the last four. UK has won the last two games at Cardinal Stadium, beating the Cards 56-10 in 2018 and upsetting 11th-ranked Louisville and Heisman Trophy-winning quarterback Lamar Jackson 41-38 in 2016.
UK head coach Mark Stoops realizes that some players on his current squad have never faced Louisville, something that he plans to address.
“A good dose of our team, the past two classes, have not played Louisville,” Stoops said. “This rivalry needs to be introduced to a few of our players who haven’t been exposed to it.”
Stoops knows that the Cards are playing better as the season has moved on. He knows this is not the same team that the Cats beat two seasons ago…Read More
Series vs. Louisville
• Kentucky leads the all-time series 17-15, including 8-5 in Louisville.
• The state rivals play for the Governor’s Cup trophy.
• The Cats have won three of the past four meetings, including a 56-10 win the last time they traveled to Louisville, in 2018.
• In that game, the 46-point margin was the largest in Governor’s Cup history.
• UK has won the past two meetings by a combined score of 101-23.
• In those two meetings the Cats have rushed for 857 yards, including a school-record 517 in the 45-13 win in 2019.
• The 2019 meeting saw Lynn Bowden Jr. rush for 284 yards on 22 attempts. The performance ranks second on UK’s single-game rushing chart.
• In 2016, the Cats secured a thrilling 41-38 last-second victory over the No. 11 Cardinals, ending a five-game losing streak to Louisville in the process.
• The modern version of the Governor’s Cup rivalry began in 1994 after a 70-year hiatus and has been played 26 of the past 27 seasons, with only the pandemic-affected 2020 season causing a one-year pause.
• Biggest UK win: 73 (73-0, 1922)
• Biggest Louisville win: 31 (49-28, 2006)
• Games decided by eight points or less: Kentucky leads 6-5
The Governor’s Cup
• The Governor’s Cup was created in 1994 as the trophy for the winner of the Kentucky-Louisville game. Donated by The Kroger Company at a cost of $23,000, the Governor’s Cup stands 33 inches tall and weighs 110 pounds. The trophy’s base and upright columns are hand-milled black marble. The glass components are optic-grade crystal. All metal parts are 23-karat, gold-plated brass. The cup itself is made of pewter with a 23-karat gold-plated finish.
• The cup was designed by Kendall Costner and sculpted by James Corcoran of Bruce Fox, Inc. The Kroger Company also is involved in supporting academic pursuits at the schools. Kroger is donating $10,000 to each school for each year the game is played. Including this year, Kroger’s donations now total $540,000 — $270,000 to each school.
A UK Win Would…
• Be Kentucky’s 15th consecutive non-conference victory, the second-longest active streak in FBS, dating to the beginning of the 2018 season.
• Boost UK to 20-3 in last 23 non-conference games dating to 2016. Give Coach Mark Stoops 58 career victories at UK, putting him just two wins shy of tying Paul “Bear” Bryant for the school’s all-time winning coach.
• Give UK nine wins for the second time in Stoops’ tenure as head coach (2018, 2021).
• Be just the second time UK has won nine games in the regular season since 1977 (2018, 2021).
• Be UK’s third consecutive win the series and fourth in the past five meetings.
• Improve UK’s record on Louisville’s home field to 9-5.
• Give the Cats three straight wins vs. Louisville at Cardinal Stadium (2016, 2018).
• Be the fourth consecutive season UK closes its regular season with a victory.
• Kentucky has 11 players from Louisville on its roster: twin defensive linemen Alex and Richard Bascom, LB Jared Casey, WR Tae Tae Crumes, TE Izayah Cummings, WR Luke Leeper, LS Jordan Morrow, FB Jack Varga, OLB J.J. Weaver, RB La’Vell Wright and OL John Young.
• Louisville has two players from Lexington: LB Jack Fagot and WR Thomas Jordan.
• Kentucky defensive backs coach Chris Collins served as a defensive graduate assistant under Louisville head coach Scott Satterfield in 2015 while Satterfield was the coach at Appalachian State.