Kentucky Wildcats Face Tough Road to Postseason in 2013

Mark Zerof, USA TODAY SPORTS

Fans of the Kentucky Wildcats are excited about the 2013 season. New head coach Mark Stoops has fired up the fan base and improved the talent level on both sides of the ball.

However, if Stoops and company are to make it to a bowl game, they will have to pull a couple of upsets along the way.

In fact, Kentucky faces what is likely the nation’s toughest schedule in 2013. The Wildcats have home games against three potential Top 10 opponents with the Louisville Cardinals, the Florida Gators and the Alabama Crimson Tide.

The road slate isn’t much easier. Kentucky visits the South Carolina Gamecocks, the Mississippi State Bulldogs, the Vanderbilt Commodores and the Georgia Bulldogs.

Facing such a daunting schedule, how do the Wildcats come up with the six wins necessary to make it back to the postseason for the first time in three years?

Kentucky must beat Western Kentucky, Miami (Ohio) and Alabama State. If they can add wins in home games against the Missouri Tigers and the Tennessee Volunteers, which are certainly not sure things, Kentucky still must find a way to get that elusive sixth victory.

The Wildcats would need to pull a surprise at Mississippi State or Vanderbilt to reach the postseason. Neither of those will be easy tasks, as MSU should be improved this season and Vanderbilt continues to make strides under head coach James Franklin.

It doesn’t appear likely that Stoops will make a bowl game in year one in the Bluegrass State. But if he is to do it, beating Missouri, Tennessee and either Mississippi State or Vanderbilt appears to be the only way.

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