Kentucky vs. Southern Miss Fearless Prediction & Game Preview
Check out the Kentucky vs. Southern Miss fearless prediction, thoughts, and game preview.
Kentucky (0-0) vs. Southern Miss (0-0) Game Preview
Broadcast, TV, Game Time
Date: Saturday, Sept. 2nd
Game Time: 4:00 pm ET
Venue: M.M. Roberts Stadium, Hattiesburg, MS
Network: CBS Sports Network
When we last saw these two teams, Southern Miss was winning the 2016 season opener 44-35 in Lexington, and Kentucky appeared to be ready to struggle yet again.
The Wildcats turned out to to be fine – going to a bowl game – and Southern Miss went on to have a decent season. But now, with UK coming to Hattiesburg, this turns into another big moment for both.
Unlike last year, it might be next to impossible for the Cats to go bowling with a loss to the Golden Eagles, while USM has a shot to show it’s about to be one of the Conference USA superstars.
With Eastern Kentucky up next for UK, there’s a relative breather before diving into SEC action against South Carolina, while Southern Miss gets Southern, ULM and North Texas to follow.
For now, though, this will be one of the better under-the-radar games of the first big weekend.
One Reason Why Kentucky Will Win
Will the Southern Miss run defense hold up? It was great overall last season, and it has most of the key tacklers back, but the D didn’t hold up in a few key games, and went 1-5 when allowing 170 rushing yards or more.
Last season, the Cats were held to just 96 yards in the loss to USM, but they found something as the season went on, rolling for more than 170 yards in in nine of the final ten regular season games, only going under against Alabama.
Four starters are back up front for what should be an even more dangerous ground attack to pave the way for another good offense that might not have the sure-thing big play stars, but will be effective.
One Reason Why Southern Miss Will Win
Kentucky might have a ton of decent defensive parts returning, but the experience might not matter if the entire group isn’t far, far stronger against the run.
The linebackers are great, and there’s talent on the front four, but the run D got gouged time and again, including allowing 262 yards and three scores to the Eagles.
As long as the Southern Miss offensive front is okay from the start, star RB Ito Smith and the rest of the talented skill players will do the rest.
What’s Going To Happen
Southern Miss will be a major problem for the Wildcats – again.
The quarterback situation/battle between Kwadra Griggs and Keon Howard will still go on, but the offense will crank up the production at home and be balanced, explosive, and tough to get off the field.
But Kentucky’s O will be a wee bit better.
It might not always be smooth, but the ground attack will be effective when it absolutely has to. It’ll take control late to keep the USM offense off the field, for a tough, tough win.
Kentucky vs. Southern Miss Prediction
Final Score: Kentucky 38, Southern Miss 34
Line: Kentucky -10.5 o/u: 61
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Must See Rating
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