Run defense struggles in rivalry

samdraut

Louisville football went into its annual rivalry game knowing Kentucky wanted to run the football. The Wildcats didn’t have any problems meeting that desire Nov. 30 in Lexington.

Kentucky rushed for 517 yards, averaging 12.9 yards per carry in its 45-13 victory over Louisville. Kentucky’s offensive line dominated Louisville’s front seven as quarterback Lynn Bowden rushed for 284 yards and four touchdowns while Chris Rodriguez added 125 rushing yards.

Louisville coach Scott Satterfield said his team missed tackles and was worn down by Kentucky’s front five.

“We knew they were going to run the football, but it’s still hard to stop,” Satterfield said. “Defensively, we’ve struggled quite honestly, we all know that, we struggled this year tackling.”

Bowden had three of his four touchdown runs in the second half, taking carries of 32, 46 and 60 yards for scores. Bowden only needed to attempt two passes with a rushing attack that was unstoppable.

“You’re trying to put everybody in that box to stop the run, and once they clear that five to six-yard area, there’s not anybody else there,” Satterfield said. “If you don’t make the tackle, it’s going to be a touchdown. That’s why they had so many big plays.”

Linebacker C.J. Avery, who had a team-high seven tackles for Louisville, said Kentucky had a good blocking scheme that was tough to defend, which made it difficult to bring down Bowden.

“He is extremely slippery,” Avery said. “He is one of those guys you have to wrap up and get down. We didn’t do a good enough job.”

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