Athlon calls for Kentucky to finish 3rd in SEC East

Adam Luckett06/03/23


Article written by:On3 imageAdam Luckett


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(Dr. Michael Huang | KSR)

Mark Stoops and the Kentucky football program is looking to bounce back in 2023 after a disappointing 7-6 campaign last fall. Expectations should be high for the Wildcats.

Kentucky will be a heavy favorite their first four games before hosting Florida on Sept. 30. There is a winnable home game against Missouri (Oct. 14) and three very winnable road games in the last month against Mississippi State (Nov. 4), South Carolina (Nov. 18), and Louisville (Nov. 25). The Wildcats will need to be good in 50/50 games but there are wins there for the taking on the schedule.

In the Athlon Sports College Football Preview magazine, the popular publication is calling for Kentucky finish to third in SEC East behind Georgia and Tennessee.

SEC East

  1. Georgia (13-0, 8-0)
  2. Tennessee (9-3, 5-3)
  3. Kentucky (8-4, 4-4)
  4. South Carolina (7-5, 4-4)
  5. Florida (5-7, 3-5)
  6. Missouri (6-6, 2-6)
  7. Vanderbilt (4-8, 1-7)

SEC West

  1. Alabama (12-1, 8-0)
  2. LSU (10-2, 6-2)
  3. Texas A&M (8-4, 4-4)
  4. Ole Miss (8-4, 4-4)
  5. Arkansas (7-5, 3-5)
  6. Mississippi State (6-6, 2-6)
  7. Auburn (6-6, 2-6)

SEC Championship

Georgia beats Alabama

Potential top 25 finish

Getting to 8-4 against the current schedule should have Kentucky in position to finish the season ranked in the AP Top 25 poll for the third time in the last six seasons under Mark Stoops. Athlon is calling for UK to make another trip to Charlotte for the Duke’s Mayo Bowl (Dec. 27, 5:30 p.m. ET). The Cats are projected to face Pittsburgh and a postseason win at Bank of America Stadium would get Kentucky to nine wins and a likely ranked finish.

Early projections are calling for Kentucky to be a top-25 team in 2023. The pieces are there for the Wildcats to make some noise this fall in the SEC even with both Alabama and Georgia on the schedule.

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