Kentucky quarterback Andre' Woodson's college swan song could end up being against a bunch of ugly ducklings.
Woodson and his fellow upperclassmen will leave Kentucky after leading the school to consecutive bowl appearances for the first time since the 1998-99 seasons. But Kentucky's sendoff for Woodson, wide receiver Keenan Burton, tight end Jacob Tamme, linebacker Wesley Woodyard and others is overshadowed by a mess at Florida State.
Twenty-five scholarship players won't play for the Seminoles because of injury, violation of team rules or suspensions as a result of an academic cheating scandal.
The list of missing players includes two starting offensive linemen (left tackle Daron Rose and right guard Jacky Claude), two tight ends, backup quarterback Xavier Lee, starting defensive linemen Budd Thacker and Neefy Moffett, starting linebacker Dekoda Watson and starting cornerback Patrick Robinson – the team's interception leader.
Kentucky has an absentee problem of its own, with freshman tailback Derrick Locke (521 rushing yards, five touchdowns) out with a broken rib. Burton and starting cornerback Paul Warford are also doubtful because of injuries.
As for Woodson, he's not looking at the new faces on Florida State's defense. "That has nothing to do concerning us," he said. "We just have to do a good job of getting ourselves ready for this game. Obviously the play-calling and the schemes they run are not going to change."
Mike Huguenin's pick: Kentucky 27-23.
- Keenan Burton