This Week in Kentucky Football History: Wildcats Become Wildcats
On Thursdays throughout the 2015 season we will take a trip down memory lane and look back at past great plays, players and games associated with University of Kentucky football for that given week. So be sure to check back with us each and every Thursday to relive the moments that make this football program so special.
• 1929: Kentucky shut out intrastate rival Louisville 29-0 in the first game under new head coach Fred J. Murphy.
• 1975: Sonny Collins rushes for 140 yards, his 16th career 100-yard rushing game, but it wasn’t enough as the Wildcats lost to Penn State, 10-3.
• 1986: Kicker Joey Worley tied a then-school record with four made field goals as the Wildcats shut out the Southern Miss Golden Eagles 32-0. The offense was led by Ivy Joe Hunter’s 128 rushing yards, his first career 100-yard rushing game.
• 1997: Kentucky upset No. 20 Alabama 40-34 in overtime for just their second victory over the Crimson Tide in program history, and the first since 1922. After the game fans rushed the field and tore down the goalposts, a first at Commonwealth Stadium. Quarterback Tim Couch led the offense with 355 passing yards, his fifth career 300-yard passing game, setting a new school record for most career 300-yard passing games. Derek Homer set a career high with 103 receiving yards and Anthony White rushed for 117 yards, his second career 100-yard rushing game. The announced attendance of 59,226 was at the time the second largest crowd in Commonwealth Stadium history.
• 2007: Rafael Little rushed for 135 yards, his 12th career 100-yard rushing game, as Kentucky lost to South Carolina 38-23 in Kentucky’s first Thursday night game since 2003.
• 2014: Jojo Kemp rushed for a career high 131 yards as Kentucky overcame a 14-point fourth quarter deficit to defeat South Carolina, 45-38. This was the largest fourth-quarter comeback in school history.
• 1895: The Wildcats shut out the Frankfort Athletic Club 10-0 in the first game under head coach Charles Mason.
• 1918: Kentucky defeated border rival Indiana 24-7 in the first game under new head coach Andy Gill.
• 1929: Kentucky shutout Maryville 40-0 in the first home night game in school history.
• 1946: Kentucky overwhelmed Xavier, shutting them out 70-0, their largest shutout win since 1922. The 70 points scored are now the fifth most scored by Kentucky in a game since World War II.
• 1957: Lou Michaels set a then-school record by averaging 53 yards on his five punts as the Wildcats lost to the Florida Gators 14-7. One of his punts traveled 71 yards, at the time the longest punt in the school’s modern era.
• 1974: Mike Fanuzzi rushed for a career high 208 yards, setting a school record for most rushing yards by a quarterback, as Kentucky lost to Miami (Ohio) 14-7.
• 1985: Kicker Joey Worley tied a then-school record by making four field goals in a 26-7 victory for Kentucky over Clemson. This was the school’s 450th victory.
• 1894: Kentucky defeated intrastate foe Georgetown 40-6 in the first game under new head coach W. P. Finney.
• 1906: Kentucky was shut out by Vanderbilt 28-0 in the first game under new head coach J. White Guyn.
• 1951: Kentucky had its fair share of mental mistakes against Georgia Tech, setting a school record with 18 penalties in a 13-7 loss to the Yellow Jackets.
• 1962: Kentucky lost to Auburn, 16-6, the school’s 250th loss.
• 1973: Running back Sonny Collins tied a school record with four rushing touchdowns and set a then-school record with 229 rushing yards as Kentucky defeated Mississippi State, 42-14. The Wildcats blew the game open late in the game, scoring a then-school record 21 fourth-quarter points. The defense chipped in when Darryl Bishop returned an interception 83 yards, at the time the sixth-longest interception return in school history and the longest interception return in school history that didn’t result in a touchdown.
• 1984: Kentucky had a pair of 100-yard rushers, Mark Higgs (116) and George Adams (114), in a 27-14 victory for the Wildcats over Rutgers. Mark Higgs’ 76-yard touchdown run was at the time the ninth-longest running play in the school’s modern era.
• 2001: Artose Pinner rushed for 105 yards, his third career 100-yard rushing game, as Kentucky lost to South Carolina, 42-7.
• 2012: Kentucky lost to Mississippi State 27-14 in the school’s 1,200th game played.
• 1967: Dicky Lyons, Sr. returned a punt 71 yards for a touchdown, at the time the seventh-longest punt return in school history, for Kentucky’s only points in a 48-7 loss to Auburn.
• 1972: Darryl Bishop returned an interception 97 yards for a touchdown, the second-longest interception return in school history, and it provided the difference in the Wildcats’ 17-13 victory over Mississippi State. The offense was led by Gary Knutson’s career-high 136 rushing yards.
• 2000: Freshman quarterback Jared Lorenzen passed for 304 yards, his fifth career 300-yard passing game, as South Carolina edged Kentucky, 20-17.
• 1949: Kentucky had a couple explosive plays in its 25-0 shutout over the Georgia Bulldogs. Emery Clark returned a punt 61 yards for a touchdown, at the time the longest punt return in the school’s modern era, and Don Phelps had a 91-yard kickoff return, tying the then-school record for longest kickoff return. This was the school’s 500th game played.
• 1960: Kentucky got off to a hot start, tying a school record with 21 first-quarter points, in a 55-0 shutout victory for the Wildcats over Marshall.
• 1977: Kevin Kelly had a 71-yard punt, tying a then-school record for longest punt, as Kentucky defeated Mississippi State 23-7.
• 2005: Rafael Little rushed for 120 yards, his second career 100-yard rushing game, in a 44-16 defeat for the Wildcats against South Carolina.
• 1909: Kentucky defeated Illinois 6-2 in Urbana in a historical day for the program. In a chapel service following the game, Commandant Phillip Carbusier told a group of students that the football team “fought like wildcats”. The nickname grew in popularity and was adopted by the university.
• 1999: Tight end James Whalen had 119 receiving yards, his third career 100-yard receiving game, as Kentucky defeated South Carolina 30-10.
• 2004: Kicker Taylor Begley made a career-long 52-yard field goal, at the time the third-longest made field goal in school history, as the Wildcats lost to Alabama 45-17. This was the school’s 1,100th game played.
• 1896: Kentucky was shut out by Vanderbilt 6-0 in the school’s first ever conference game, as both the Wildcats and the Commodores were a part of the Southern Intercollegiate Athletic Association.
• 1987: Linebacker Jeff Kremer had thirteen assisted tackles, setting a then-school record, in a 35-6 victory for Kentucky over Ole Miss. The offense was led by Mark Higgs, who rushed for a career high 192 yards.
• 1998: Kentucky defeated South Carolina 33-28 in Lexington in a game full of offensive highlights for the Wildcats. Wide receiver Quentin McCord had an 80-yard touchdown run, at the time the 10th-longest running play in the school’s modern era. Quarterback Tim Couch passed for 315 yards, his 15th career 300-yard passing game. But it was running back Anthony White who had quite the performance, becoming the first player in school history to have at least 100 rushing yards (108) and at least 100 receiving yards (117) in the same game.