This past Saturday Kentucky played their final regular season game of the year in a heavyweight bout against the Big Blue Nation’s most hated rival, the Louisville Cardinals. For three consecutive matchups against the Dirty Birds, Kentucky has dominated the Battle for The Governor’s Cup. Last weekend was no different, as our Cats took home a 26-13 win. Let’s take a look back at those three matchups and how the 2022 victory stacks up in comparison.
1. 2018: Kentucky 56 – Louisville 10
The 2018 season was so special and memorable for many reasons. There was no better way to cap-off that year than to see our boys travel up to Cardinal Stadium and rout the Dirty Birds by 40 on their home-turf – which was entirely blue by the start of the second half. The Cats accounted for 601 total yards of offense – led by QB Terry Wilson – who put up 340 total yards and four TDs himself. The last pack of that special 2018 group played their final game this past Saturday, and we cannot thank them enough for everything they have done during their time here.
2. 2019: Kentucky 45 – Louisville 13
This was one of the most fun victories of the Stoops Era and certainly in the Battle for the Governor’s Cup. Lynn Bowden in 2019 put on display one of the greatest offensive seasons we have ever seen by a QB – and he did it as a WR. For those who don’t remember just how special Lynn’s season was that year, he ended up just six yards shy (1,468) of breaking Cam Newton’s single-season rushing record for a QB (1,473) that he set in 2010 – Cam played 14 games at QB, Lynn played only eight. There was no game that epitomized Lynn’s absurd season more than the final game against UL, where he rushed for a whopping 284 yards and four TDs.
3. 2021: Kentucky 52 – Louisville 21
After a one-year hiatus in 2020 due to COVID and rescheduling, the Battle for the Governor’s Cup was back on in 2021. Much like this past season, many UL media and fans expressed their optimism in the matchup. They thought Kentucky’s “strength of schedule” was weak in comparison to theirs and that would be the reason for their victory – very oblivious to the fact that we play in the SEC. Continuing the tradition of Kentucky QBs running all over the Cardinal defense, Levis rushed for an impressive four touchdowns, throwing the Ls Down every time he crossed the goal line.
4. 2022: Kentucky 26 – Louisville 13
On Saturday, Louisville came into Lexington ranked in the College Football Playoff standings at #25, and were easily the public favorite in the matchup (as they had been the previous two times as well). Kentucky may not have put up the drastic number of points as they had in the previous three Governor’s Cups, but the Cats (sporting their new matte black helmets) were determined to prove them wrong once again. The defense dominated, holding UL to 13 points and forcing three turnovers along the way. A balanced offensive attack with 188 yards passing and two touchdowns from Will Levis, and 124 yards rushing from CRod, helped pave the way to a fourth consecutive victory in the heated rivalry.
Whether Saturday was the final time we see many of our beloved Cats take the field is still to be determined on their bowl game status. One thing is for sure, if it was, then there could be no better sendoff than taking down our rival. In the words of Lynn Bowden, “it’s forever L’s Down!”
SAY IT LOUDER FOR THE PEOPLE IN THE BACK 🗣
IT’S FOREVER 👇s DOWN! pic.twitter.com/P0T0sHgNg3
— Blue Chips (@UKBlueChips) November 26, 2022