Kentucky’s defense being pounded by ground game

The old football adage goes that a team can’t stop much on defense if it can’t stop the other team from running the football. Right now, Kentucky cannot stop the opponent from running the football.

Through three games, the Cats are currently 92nd in the nation in rush defense, allowing 188 yards rushing yards per game. There are 120 FBS teams, by the way.

The Cats are 13th against the run in the SEC. Auburn ranks 14th and 107th nationally, allowing 217 rushing yards per game.

This is especially disappointing considering the defensive line was supposed to be the strength of the UK defense, if not the team. Starting with the Louisville game, however, through Saturday night, opponents have been able to exploit both the veteran D-line and the Cats’ inexperience at linebacker.

Here’s a chart of how the Kentucky defense has done against the run over the 15 games since Rick Minter was hired as defensive coordinator. Currently, the mid-point for NCAA rushing stats — Arizona State and Texas tied for 60th — is 148.3 rushing yards allowed per game. The Cats are 6-14 under Phillips when they allow more than 150 rushing yards in a game.

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