Kentucky freshman running back Jojo Kemp is not short on confidence heading into Kentucky’s match-up with No. 1 Alabama. Kemp has become the Wildcats’ second leading rusher with 226 yards on 33 carries this season. The young freshman showed so much promise in his limited action, the Big Blue Nation was screaming for him to get more touches. Especially after some promising play at South Carolina, the Wildcats have plenty to keep their head up about despite their 1-4 record.
Kemp spoke with Kentucky Sports Television and said Kentucky WILL score on the Crimson Tide. Along with Kemp’s emergence at running back, QB Jalen Whitlow clearly put some separation between himself and Maxwell Smith for the starting QB job with his play at South Carolina. The big fear is Kemp giving Alabama bulletin board material before the game. Saying that the Wildcats will put numbers up on a defense coached by Nick Saban takes some guts.
Kentucky ranks 85th nationally in total offense and 99th in scoring. Both stats do not suggest that the ‘Cats will have automatic successes against the two-time defending national champions. Alabama ranks 4th in the nation at holding their opponents out of scoring range. If you take away the game against Johnny Manziel and Texas A&M, the Tide have only allowed 19 total points all season long. Kentucky’s Jalen Whitlow is a far cry from Johnny Football, and Kentucky’s offense just cannot compare.
One SEC quarterback in particular could have advised Kemp on his comments before a game with Alabama. Ole Miss QB Bo Wallace made a similar remark, saying the Rebels can score on the Tide because they can score on anyone. Alabama won the game 25-0, and Wallace only accounted for 2 points when he was downed in the end-zone for a safety.
The Wildcats are nearly a four touchdown underdog despite the game being played in Lexington. Giving Alabama something to get fired up about isn’t the smartest idea. Some would classify Kemp’s remarks as boneheaded, but there’s nothing wrong with having a little confidence. Kentucky needs the confidence, but Alabama is a team that can take your confidence and plummet you back to planet earth in a hurry.