Battle of elite defenses to be showcased in Saturday’s Kentucky-Georgia game

University of Kentucky

LEXINGTON, KENTUCKY – OCTOBER 09: Kavosiey Smoke #0 of the Kentucky Wildcats runs with the ball against the LSU Tigers at Kroger Field on October 09, 2021 in Lexington, Kentucky. (Photo by Andy Lyons/Getty Images)

LEXINGTON, Ky. (FOX 56) – The University of Kentucky football team has put together one of the best defenses in college football, holding opposing teams to 17.5 points-per-game, good for 19th in the country.

Their opponent on Saturday afternoon is the Georgia Bulldogs, who trots out a top-ranked defensive unit that has only allowed 5.5 PPG. In comparison, the No. 2-ranked defense has allowed 12.2 PPG (Clemson).

The Wildcats also have to worry about Georgia’s productive offense, which also ranks in the top 20 in putting points on the scoreboard. That presents an opportunity for the UK defense to prove itself.

“Both sides of the ball have the ability to open it up and expand and go vertical,” Kentucky defensive coordinator Brad White said after Wednesday’s practice. “You never know how a game’s really going to play out but we better bring our pads because there’s gonna be a lot of thumping, I can promise that one.”

“I just feel like it’s gonna be a physical game, that gets me excited to play a physical game,” Kentucky redshirt-freshman defensive lineman Tre’vonn Rybka said. “It’s gonna be all four quarters to the last second for who’s going to win.”

Kickoff is set for 3:30 p.m. in Athens, Ga., with the winner taking sole possession of first place in the SEC East standings. ESPN’s College Gameday has selected the game as this week’s site to host the show.

“This is really going to be a huge game battling for the East,” Kentucky senior defensive back Yusuf Corker said. “I know every time we break it down we always talk about Atlanta and this time we have a chance to really go do it.”

The Bulldogs have controlled this series against their SEC foe, winning the last 11 showdowns and leading the overall series 60-12-2. The last Kentucky win came in 2009 down in Sanford Stadium, as Randall Cobb and the Wildcats snagged a 34-27 win.

“It’s gonna be a dog fight, I can say it’s gonna be a dog fight but I think we should come up with the win,” Kentucky senior cornerback Quandre Mosely said. “I feel like we can come up with the win, there’s nothing too crazy but open-field tackling and making hits and we should come up with the win, honestly.”

Kentucky sits at No. 11 in the AP Top 25 college football poll with a 6-0 record. Georgia also has a 6-0 record and holds the No. 1 spot after Alabama’s loss last weekend against Texas A&M.

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