Kentucky football continues to make noise recruiting, especially with in-state players.
Dominique Yates, Louisville Courier Journal
It’s going to take much more than a 10-win season for the University of Kentucky to begin receiving respect in college football circles.
The Wildcats, coming off their best football season in more than 40 years, can obviously be expected to take a dip in 2019 while moving on without departed game-changers like NFL draft picks Josh Allen and Benny Snell.
But preseason odds and projections still amazingly — yet typically — are quite bearish on Kentucky, a program with three consecutive winning seasons.
Athlon Sports has Kentucky going 6-6 overall and 2-6 in the SEC, finishing tied with Vanderbilt behind Missouri and South Carolina in the SEC East.
Kentucky has beaten Missouri four seasons in a row.
Kentucky has beaten South Carolina five seasons in a row.
Yet the following Vegas odds from earlier this year had Missouri and South Carolina as more likely to win the football playoff than Kentucky, which — again, as is usually the case in the preseason — was forecast at the bottom of the division with Vanderbilt.
Bovada’s current national futures odds have Kentucky at 750-1 to win the playoff. Yes, it’s a bit far-fetched to believe Kentucky is far enough along as a program to seriously contend for a national championship while playing in the SEC.
But here are some of the teams (with 2018 records) that Bovada’s odds have as more likely than Kentucky to do it in 2019:
- Kansas (3-9)
- Louisville (2-10)
- New Mexico (3-9)
- Northern Illinois (8-6)
- Tulsa (3-9)
Such projections are actually going to be helpful for Kentucky. So much of the Wildcats’ success last season, based on what the players kept saying at the time, was built on disrespect. It appeared to be an angry team looking to prove people wrong.
Given how things are shaping up heading into 2019, there should be plenty of motivation again in Lexington.
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