You’ve heard the talk all week about how this Kentucky game has all the trappings of a so-called trap game.
Early kickoff, USC students on fall break, a week before the Gamecocks’ trip to No. 3 Alabammer.
Blah, blah, blah.
While the past two Vanderbilt games have reminded USC fans there is no such thing as a sure thing in the SEC, a Steve Spurrier-coached team vs. Kentucky is about as close as it gets.
The HBC is 16-0 vs. the Wildcats, and many of those games looked like basketball scores – on one side of the scoreboard, anyway.
Hell has fury like a coach scorned by Bill Curry.
The scores have not been quite as lopsided since Spurrier came to USC. But the results have been the same.
The Gamecocks have not lost to UK since 1999, a year when they defeated no one.
USC has beaten some good Kentucky teams (the ‘Cats brought a top-10 team to Williams-Brice two years ago) and some bad teams.
This one falls somewhere in between.
It doesn’t help Rich Brooks that his best player – All-American CB Trevard Lindley – is out with a high ankle sprain. Or that UK’s other starting corner also is sidelined with an injury.
But the ‘Cats have talent. Derrick Locke leads the SEC in all-purpose yardage and Randall Cobb is an athletic, dangerous quarterback. Fortunately for USC fans, Cobb will be playing receiver.
And yes, if Stephen Garcia gets careless with his passes or the backs start putting the ball on the ground as they did in that forgettable noon-time loss to Vandy two years ago, the Gamecocks could go down.
But if they play smart, limit their turnovers, and prevent the ‘Cats from breaking off any big special-teams plays, the Gamecocks will take a 5-1 record and top-25 ranking to Tuscaloosa next weekend.
USC 31, Kentucky 17.