COLUMN: Offense lets UK down against Georgia

After watching UK fall to Georgia despite the play of the Cats’ defense, it’s clear this offense is ‘offensive’ to all that have had to watch it this season.

The passing game has made some improvements throughout the weeks, but the team has been unable to find success in all areas to put together a complete game that can help its defense.

The victory against Ole Miss had everyone beginning to think that a shot at a sixth consecutive bowl was possible.

Well in the words of Lee Corso, “Not so fast, my friend!”

Although they lost by only nine points to the SEC East representative in the conference championship game, the Cats still managed to look completely lost on offense at times. And may I remind you that the college football season is in week 12.

With the quarterback change to freshman Maxwell Smith, senior wide receiver Matt Roark has found success, but the Cats may have lost leading junior wide receiver La’Rod King.

After watching “The Change Up” recently, I have even begun to wonder if King and Roark urinated in the fountain at Triangle Park just to change roles.

On top of what appears to be the departure of fans and possibly La’Rod King from the support of this team, the Cats’ offensive line looked well on their way out of Sanford Stadium’s hedges after Max Smith took the team’s fourth and fifth sacks that resulted in him being helped off the field.

And again, the running game! I praise, praise and praise some more. Defending them that they are the key to success.

What happens? Sophomore running back Raymond Sanders and junior running back CoShik Williams only combine for 15 carries. While Williams may have not made the most of them in only gaining 12 yards on his eight carries, his counterpart, Sanders, picked up 45 yards on seven carries.

I’m to the point where I legitimately feel sorry for the Cats’ defense.

Seniors Danny Trevathan and Winston Guy don’t deserve this. Against a really good Georgia offense, Trevathan on Saturday had 17 tackles and two forced fumbles.

When he does that against a team such as Jacksonville State I will accept the fact that some people believe he doesn’t need to be in the running for the Butkus award, but he has put up those stats week in and week out.

He leads the SEC in tackles. Not to mention the Cats’ other ball hawk, Winston Guy is second. Unless Phillips puts them in at offense, they can’t help that the team isn’t winning. They are human beings and tire when they are left on the field for over half the game.

It’s just a cruel, never-ending cycle for UK. When there is a defense, there isn’t an offense. When there is a passing game, there is no running game, and vice-versa.

The Cats only have one more game left in this entire season, and for Joker Phillips and his staff, it may be a career-defining one.

Snap the losing streak against Tennessee and he may have erased everyone’s memory of the agony they have had to endure this season. Lose and athletic director Mitch Barnhart may get flooded with e-mails, text messages, and phone calls informing him of former UK offensive coordinator and Texas Tech head coach Mike Leach’s phone number.

How they could find it, I don’t know, but I won’t discount their ability to do so.

I’ve had Joker’s back this season, but he hasn’t given me a lot of reason to continue doing so.

Next season the schedule will be tougher, so what has he shown of late to make it look like there is a ceiling for improvement?

Unfortunately I don’t believe I can answer that anymore. My evidence of statistical success has dwindled to nearly nothing.

Phillips’ fate hangs in the balance of a streak that he never had to face during his playing days, as the Volunteers didn’t get rolling until the 1985 season, one year after the Cats’ head coach was no longer a UK wide receiver.