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5 Reasons Why Kentucky Can Win the SEC East

Why Kentucky Wins the SEC East

Why Kentucky Wins the SEC East

[vc_row][vc_column][vc_column_text]We all know Georgia will win the SEC East but who is the sleeper that could challenge them? It’s not the Gators. It’s Kentucky. Here are five reasons why.

1. Will Levis' Growth

The former Penn State transfer was a big question heading into 2021, but he showed that he could step up in big moments for the Wildcats. He had 33 total touchdowns for the season, ranking in the top half of SEC quarterbacks in nearly every passing statistic. If he's able to cut down on the turnovers, he could emerge as one of the top QBs in the conference.

2. The Offensive Line

Yes, they lost some key starters, most notably All-American Darian Kinnard, but in the Mark Stoops era, they've proven that they can reload easily at that position and be one of the best lines in the conference year-in and year-out. Watch out for true freshman Kiyaunta Goodwin - the early enrollee was a top-100 recruit in the 2022 class, and at 6'8, 305 pounds, has the frame and upside that could make him a future first-round pick. The addition of Auburn's Tashawn Manning is another nice piece that should be a day-one starter at one of the guard spots. They'll be able to open up big holes for Chris Rodriguez, one of the top returning backs in the SEC.

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3. Continuity on Defense

The Wildcats bring back seven starters from a defense that ranked in the top 30 in nearly every defensive category last season. They'll have to replace a couple of key guys - most notably Josh Paschal, Marquan McCall, and Yusuf Corker, but there are a lot of quality upperclassmen remaining.

4. Impact Transfers

Kentucky is hoping to strike gold again on the wide receiver transfer market after Wan'Dale Robinson proved to be one of the best additions in the country last year. They've brought in Tayvion Robinson from Virginia Tech who should be a day one starter, as well as the previously mentioned Tashawn Manning.

5. Coaching Experience

Mark Stoops is rarely mentioned among the top coaches in the country, but all he does is continue to win. After taking over a moribund Wildcats program in 2013, he's led them to a bowl game in each of the last six seasons, including reaching double-digit wins twice. He's a guy who remains among the most underrated coaches in the nation.[/vc_column_text][/vc_column][/vc_row]