Western Kentucky won seven games last season, only the second time the Hilltoppers have won more than two during their five seasons as a members of the FBS. And apparently that winning season has created a mixture of confidence and delusion in a Hilltoppers team that faces No. 1 Alabama on Saturday.
It started with coach Willie Taggart, who called his team's 40-point spread against the Crimson Tide "baloney."
Linebacker T.J. Smith followed his coach's lead by predicting a Western Kentucky win.
"I'll tell you what, we're gonna play hard -- I'll tell you what, we're gonna freaking win this game," Smith said. "Truly, we got a great defense, great linebackers -- so watch this game, we're gonna win."
While the chances of this happening are slim — especially now that they've been talking about it for the past few days — coach Nick Saban did warn about his team playing poorly following a big win like the one they had against Michigan last week.
Saban blasted reporters about articles that explored the possibility of a repeat national title.
Western Kentucky is banking on the Crimson Tide reading its own press clippings.
But history isn't on Western Kentucky's side.
The Hilltoppers have never defeated a team from one of the "Big Six" conferences in 12 tries and have lost to those teams by an average of 28.5 points, including a 41-7 loss to Alabama in 2008.
"We feel like we can compete with anybody," quarterback Kawaun Jakes said. "They're human just like us. We just got to go out with confidence, play against ourselves, play together, play as one, one heartbeat. Just go out there and compete. It's my last go around and we want everyone to play like it's their last go-around. No matter who it is, we're just going to play together and play to win."
- Sports & Recreation