Michael Hickey/Getty Images
Kentucky beat Mississippi State in Lexington a year ago.

Sound Off: Time for Kentucky football to prove if it’s for real

It’s the week of reckoning for Kentucky football. The Wildcats’ schedule was favorable for the first half of the season, but a matchup at Mississippi State this weekend will be a real test for coach Mark Stoops’ squad.

Kentucky and Mississippi State kick off at 4 p.m. ET Saturday in Starkville, Miss. Last season’s game between these two teams was decided on a final kick. SEC Country Kentucky writers Kyle Tucker and Joe Mussatto preview this year’s matchup in this episode of  the Zaxby’s Sound Off.

  • It’s prove-it week for Kentucky. The Wildcats are off to a 5-1 start, but they’re still looking to crack the polls and prove themselves as legitimate contenders in the SEC East. A Week 3 win at South Carolina is Kentucky’s most impressive victory of the season, but what’s UK’s second-best win? There really isn’t one to point to, but a big opportunity awaits the Cats in Starkville. Winning on the road at Mississippi State is the type of victory the Cats crave. (0:12)
  • Kentucky’s 5-1 start has attracted attention from those following SEC football, but the Wildcats could become a national story if they beat Mississippi State. Win on Saturday, and then Kentucky likely will be favored in its next three games. We’ve talked about the possibility of a 9-1 start, and that could become something serious to watch depending on how things play out in Starkville. (2:22)
  • Kentucky’s biggest advantage against Mississippi State might be the timing of the game. The Wildcats are coming off a bye week, and that bye couldn’t have come at a better time. Several Kentucky players were banged up, but the Cats should be near full strength on Saturday. The most important injury news? Junior linebacker Jordan Jones is expected to suit up for the first time since Week 2. That could be a key for the Cats. (7:18)