The Kentucky Wildcats enter the 2011 season with fairly low expectations. Key players, such as Randall Cobb, have moved on to the NFL or graduated and the SEC East appears to have two power teams that will vie for the division crown in South Carolina and Georgia. Despite low expectations, however, the Wildcats enter the season with one of the most exciting defensive players in the league, (if not the country) linebacker Danny Trevathan.
Trevathan was named a first team All-American last year after leading the SEC in tackles with 144 and an average of 11.1 tackles per game. He was second in the SEC in forced fumbles with 4 and led the Wildcats in tackles for loss with 16 (which was also good enough for 3rd in the SEC). In Kentucky’s near upset of the eventual National Champion Auburn Tigers, Trevathan recorded a career-high 17 tackles. He was recently named to the Coaches First Team All-SEC defense and is listed on the Butkus Award watch list.
Coming into the season, much of Kentucky’s hopes on defense ride on Trevathan and his ability to make plays. Like any other SEC team, the schedule is difficult but the Wildcats avoid SEC West foes Auburn and Alabama but do have to travel to LSU on October 1st. With games against South Carolina, Mississippi State, Florida and Georgia, as well, Kentucky will need Trevathan to play like last year for the Wildcats to have a legitimate chance to make a bowl game. Kentucky fans may not have a lot to look forward to this season but Trevathan should provide a high level of excitement in Commonwealth Stadium.