The battle of the border comes to war this weekend as the Volunteers travel north on 75 to take on the Wildcats.
For decades, Kentucky lost to Tennessee over and over again but throughout the last half decade, the script has been flipped. Kentucky has won two of the last four, looking for its second straight win over Tennessee and third in the past 5 meetings. Before the last four meetings, Tennessee had won 31 of the last 32 (1985-2016).
Last season when the Cats went down to dirty Neyland Stadium, they beat the breaks off of Tennessee (ranked No. 18 at the time) 34-7, ending a 36-year victory drought in Knoxville dating back to the 1984 season. It was the first win in Knoxville over a ranked Tennessee team in school history and the largest margin of victory (27) there since a 56-0 win in 1893, the first game of the 116-game series.
I've compiled 10 facts that you must know before watching Saturdays game, courtesy of UK Athletics.
Tennessee leads 81-26-9 overall, including a 38-15-3 edge in Lexington
This season marks the 10-year anniversary of Kentucky ending a 26-year drought against the Volunteers (Nov. 26, 2011). Wide receiver Matt Roark served as the emergency starter at quarterback and helped lead the Cats to an improbable 10-7 win in Lexington.
With 116 total games played, it is third-most played rivalry in Southeastern Conference history. Only Auburn-Georgia (125 games) and Ole Miss-Mississippi State (117) have been played more. The two teams have played annually since 1919 except for 1943 (war year, no team for either school).
UK coach Mark Stoops is 2-6 vs. Tennessee during his tenure.
Chris Rodriguez has 22 career rushing touchdowns and needs three to tie for fourth in UK history with Mark Higgs, George Adams and Derrick Ramsey.
Josh Paschal has 32.0 career tackles for loss, seventh in school history. He needs 0.5 to tie Danny Trevathan (2008-11) for sixth.
A win would give the Cats back-to-back wins over Tennessee for the first time since the 1976 and 1977 seasons.
Kentucky has three players from state of Tennessee: DB Adrian Huey (Nashville), OT Darian Kinnard (Knoxville) and DL Tre’Vonn Rybka (Dickson). Tennessee has one player on its roster from Kentucky: DB Trel Riley (Princeton).
Kentucky has won seven in a row at Kroger Field, the longest streak since the 2006-07 teams won eight in a row at home.
UK is 13-2 in its last 15 home night games.
If Kentucky comes out with the victory, they will clinch a winning SEC record, second place in the SEC East and their third win over the Volunteers in the past five meetings.
Game time is 7 p.m. and it will be televised on ESPN2 under Kentucky's third-straight sellout crowd.