With a defense that ranked 59th in the nation in yards allowed (394) and 69th in the nation in points allowed (27.4 per game) in 2015, the pressure is on Kentucky Wildcats Coach Mark Stoops and defensive coordinator DJ Eliot to produce some better results in the new season. However ,unlike the offense which returns almost everybody from 2015, only one starter from last year’s front seven returns in 2016. In fact, the Cats finished last in the SEC in sacks with 17 and 12th in rushing yards allowed with 196.
Looking at the Kentucky Wildcats Defense/Special Teams
For Stoops’ team to take the next step in the SEC and get to six wins and a bowl game, that effort will have to start up front and it begins with nose tackle Matt Elam. The junior has dropped about 30 pounds in the off season and if he can finally show some of the promise he had coming out of high school when he was a five-star recruit by some services, the Wildcat defense will improve considerably.
LEXINGTON, KY – OCTOBER 11: Kicker Austin MacGinnis #99 and holder Jared Leet #13 of the Kentucky Wildcats kick against the Louisiana Monroe Warhawks during the second half of play at Commonwealth Stadium on October 11, 2014 in Lexington, Kentucky. (Photo by John Sommers II/Getty Images)