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How Middle Tennessee State fared against other SEC opponents

Photo: Scott Cunningham/Getty Images North America

Kentucky plays Middle Tennessee State tomorrow, and believe it or not, the Cats are the third SEC team on the Blue Raiders’ schedule this year. MTSU lost to Vanderbilt 35-7 to start the season and to Georgia 49-7 two weeks later. Kentucky also played both of those teams, so let’s compare how the Cats and the Blue Raiders fared vs. their familiar foes.

Against Vanderbilt

Points Passing Yards Rushing Yards Vandy Points Vandy Passing Yards Vandy Rushing Yards
MTSU (loss) 7 178 116 35 170 176
Kentucky (win) 14 18 280 7 216 68

Obviously, Kentucky’s lack of a passing game sticks out here, as does the rush defense, which held the Commodores to only 68 yards. The MTSU vs. Vandy game was a weird one, delayed almost half an hour by lightning, but the Blue Raiders fought hard in the first half, holding Vandy to 89 yards after giving up 58 on the opening drive. MTSU quarterback Brent Stockstill had 178 yards, a touchdown, and an interception.

Against Georgia

Points Passing Yards Rushing Yards Georgia Points Georgia Passing Yards Georgia Rushing Yards
MTSU (loss) 7 130 158 49 223 261
Kentucky (loss) 17 226 84 34 113 331

Georgia handled both teams easily, and most of MTSU’s rushing yards came after the Bulldogs were up big. Make of it what you will that the Blue Raiders were able to hold the Bulldogs to fewer rushing yards than the Cats were, but Georgia wanted to make a statement vs. Kentucky. And they did.

MTSU’s lone score came on a 41-yard pass from Stockstill to Patrick Smith, who finished the day with nine catches for 77 yards:

Moral of the story: while Stockstill can burn you on some big plays, MTSU’s rush defense is weak, meaning Benny Snell and AJ Rose should have a field day. Time for the Kentucky offense to get back on track.

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2022-10-02