Kentucky’s 2013 schedule certainly doesn’t get any easier for a team that is struggling to win games now.
The Wildcats will face three teams currently in the chase for the national championship — Alabama, South Carolina and Florida — as part of their Southeastern Conference slate and will again have three more teams — Louisville, Georgia and Mississippi State — that are currently ranked in the top 25.
The Wildcats, only 1-6 going into Saturday night’s game with Georgia, will open the season in Nashville against Western Kentucky at LP Field, home of the Tennessee Titans, on Aug. 31. UK also played at LP Field in the 2006, 2007 and 2009 Music City Bowls, along with the 2011 season opener against Western. The Wildcats struggled to beat Western in Nashville two years ago and lost to the Hilltoppers in overtime in Lexington this year.
Kentucky wil host Miami on Sept. 7, the first meeting between the teams since the 2009 game that UK won Cincinnati. Next will come the annual Governor’s Cup contest against Louisville on Sept. 14 in Lexington.
Since college football is allowing teams 14 weekends to play 12 games starting in 2013, UK will have two open dates with the first one coming on Sept. 21 before UK hosts Florida on Sept. 28.
Next, the Cats will travel to South Carolina on Oct. 5 before Alabama, the nation’s top-ranked team this year, will make its first visit to Lexington since 2009 on Oct. 12.
After the second open date on Oct. 19, UK will play Oct. 26 at Mississippi State before coming home to face Alabama State Nov. 2 and Missouri Nov. 9. Kentucky have road games at Vanderbilt Nov. 16 and Georgia Nov. 23 before hosting Tennessee Nov. 30 to end regular-season play.
Kentucky will play five straight games — Louisville, Florida, South Carolina, Alabama and Mississippi State — next year against team’s currently ranked in the top 25.
The 2013 schedule is considered a “bridge” schedule and is not based on previous or future SEC scheduling formats. The league plans to finalize the permanent rotation of cross-division opponents beginning with the 2014 season and all 2013 games are subject to date changes based on television schedules.
“As we began working on the 2013 football schedule, it became apparent that the conference would need another year of the ‘bridge’ schedule to make everything work,” said SEC Commissioner Mike Slive. “I appreciate the SEC transition team and our athletics directors, who came together to put this schedule in place. We look forward to starting with our new scheduling rotation in 2014.”
2013 UK schedule
Here is the week-by-week listing of Kentucky’s 2013 schedule. Dates are subject to change.
Date Team Location
Aug. 31 vs. WKU Nashville
Sept. 7 Miami (Ohio) Home
Sept. 14 Louisville Home
Sept. 21 Open
Sept. 28 Florida Home
Oct. 5 at South Carolina Columbia
Oct. 12 Alabama Home
Oct. 19 Open
Oct. 26 at Mississippi St. Starkville
Nov. 2 Alabama State Home
Nov. 9 Missouri Home
Nov. 16 at Vanderbilt Nashville
Nov. 23 at Georgia Athens
Nov. 30 Tennessee Home