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Kentucky preparing for top-25 matchup with Ole Miss

By BJ Bennett
SouthernPigskin.com
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As the first month of the college football season comes to a close, look near the top of the national rankings; Kentucky in the 7th in the latest AP Poll. In line with traditional powers, October will open with the Wildcats following just Georgia, Alabama, Ohio State and Michigan as the top four, then Clemson and Southern Cal. Basketball or football school, Kentucky is contending.

The Wildcats aren't just winning, they are winning consistently. Kentucky has now won eight contests in a row overall, going 16-3 in 19 games; simply for point of reference, Alabama is 17-2 in that same span. Mark Stoops and Kentucky have a power program in Lexington, one now standing out in the SEC.

A 4-0 start is highlighted by a key win at Florida, one where the Wildcats won in Gainesville right after the Gators edged top ten Utah. Kentucky scored the game's final 19 points in the springboard victory, making future showdowns with the likes of 8th-ranked Tennessee and defending national champion and top-ranked Georgia even more important. The early performance solidified the Wildcats as a leaguewide and national player.

Saturday's trip to also-unbeaten and 14th-ranked Ole Miss will be another barometer for Big Blue as the last two meetings between the Wildcats and the Rebels have been decided by a combined four points. Ole Miss hasn't lost at home going back to October of 2020 and are favored in this contest. Kentucky can continue to prove doubters wrong with another big win.

Quarterback Will Levis has been one of the top quarterbacks in college football. Tayvion Robinson is second in the SEC in receiving with 87.3 yards per game. Carrington Valentine is tied for second in the game with eight passes defended. Additionally, the Wildcats will get star running back Chris Rodriguez, Jr. back from suspension this week. He rushed for 1,379 yards and nine touchdowns a year ago.   

Kentucky is currently one of college football's top teams and the record and rankings reflect that. Merely three spots out of a theoretical playoff slotting, the Wildcats now have seven straight SEC games before their rivalry week clash with Louisville to finish the regular season. Though it's easy to look ahead to a late October tilt at Tennessee and a potentially-massive mid-November home game with Georgia, Kentucky will have to continue to improve and progress for those games to realize their full potential.

With eight consecutive wins, the Wildcats have largely been doing just that.

BJ Bennett - B.J. Bennett is SouthernPigskin.com's founder and publisher. He is the co-host of "Three & Out" with Kevin Thomas and Ben Troupe on the "Southern Pigskin Radio Network". Email: bj@espncoastal.com / Twitter: @BJBennettSports