GAMEDAY College Football

Kentucky 37, Miami of Ohio 13

(AP Photo/Michael Clubb)

By GARY B. GRAVES
AP Sports Writer

LEXINGTON, Ky. - Barion Brown returned the second-half kickoff 100 yards for a touchdown, Keidron Smith's fumble return less than a minute later set up another score and No. 20 Kentucky pulled away to beat Miami (Ohio) 37-13.

Mark Stoops' 60th victory tied him with Paul "Bear" Bryant as the Wildcats' winningest coach in 10 seasons with the program. But Kentucky needed those game-changing plays to make it happen after leading only 13-10 at halftime behind several missed opportunities deep in Miami territory.

The Wildcats quickly snatched momentum after the break as Brown dashed left, found a seam and turned the corner down the sideline for the big score just 13 seconds in. That TD included replay drama as the freshman appeared to let go of the football as he crossed the goal line. It was confirmed, putting Kentucky up by 10.

Tyrell Ajian then came up big on Miami's ensuing possession to force Jaylon Bester's fumble that Smith returned 23 yards to the 8. Will Levis hit Chauncey Magwood with an 8-yard scoring pass two later for a 27-10 cushion. Matt Ruffalo added a 50-yard field goal and Levis tossed a 1-yard scoring pass to Dane Key and finished with 303 yards passing and three TDs.

Virginia Tech transfer Tayvion Robinson supplied Kentucky's other chunk plays, catching six passes for a career-high 136 yards in his Wildcats debut. His first touch went for 45 yards to set up Levis' 6-yard TD pass to Brenden Bates on the Wildcats' first possession to tie it at 7.

Miami managed to tie the game at 10 and stifled Kentucky at times in the first half but only managed Graham Nicholson's 27-yard field goal midway through the third quarter. Tyre Shelton scored the Redhawks' lone TD with a 22-yard run on their opening drive. Brett Gabbert completed 20 of 28 passes for 166 yards.

The Wildcats played without leading rusher Chris Rodriguez, who Stoops said was unavailable along with linebacker Jordan Wright without being specific. The coach added that Rodriguez and other players could face multi-game suspensions next week for undisclosed reasons.

THE TAKEAWAY

Miami: Brett Gabbert's short out passes initially caught Kentucky off guard to set up the first TD, and for a while the Redhawks kept pace physically and statistically. Everything changed on two plays within 62 seconds in the third quarter, digging a hole they couldn't climb out of.

Kentucky: The Wildcats left points on the field with Levis' high pass off Izayah Cummings' fingertips and the QB's goal-line interception before special teams and defense restored focus and swagger. Robinson lived up to billing as the big-play threat, but the Wildcats have work to do if they hope to win in the Swamp next week.


Scoring Summary
First Quarter Mia-OKty
Mia-O TD 9:39 Tyre Shelton 22 yd run (Graham Nicholson kick) 7 0
Kty TD 7:29 Brenden Bates 6 yd pass from Will Levis (Matt Ruffolo kick) 7 7
Second Quarter Mia-OKty
Kty FG 9:22 Matt Ruffolo 34 yd FG 7 10
Mia-O FG 6:10 Graham Nicholson 48 yd FG 10 10
Kty FG 0:00 Matt Ruffolo 25 yd FG 10 13
Third Quarter Mia-OKty
Kty TD 14:47 Barion Brown 100 yd kick return (Matt Ruffolo kick) 10 20
Kty TD 13:58 Chauncey Magwood 8 yd pass from Will Levis (Matt Ruffolo kick) 10 27
Mia-O FG 9:04 Graham Nicholson 27 yd FG 13 27
Kty FG 1:09 Matt Ruffolo 50 yd FG 13 30
Fourth Quarter Mia-OKty
Kty TD 7:46 Dane Key 1 yd pass from Will Levis (Matt Ruffolo kick) 13 37
Team Stats
  Miami (OH) Kentucky
First downs 17 20
  Rushing 5 4
  Passing 11 13
  Penalty 1 3
3rd Down Efficiency 3-14, 21% 2-8, 25%
4th down efficiency 3-4, 75% 0-1, 0%
Rushes-Yards 32-111 26-50
Passing Yards 179 303
Return Yards 5 146
Completions-Attempts-Int 22-32-0 21-32-1
Sacks-Yards Lost 3--18 4--26
Punts 5 2
Punts-Average 34 35
Fumbles Lost 2-1 0-0
Penalties - Yards 7-45 4-30
Time of Possession 31:53 28:07
Miami (OH) Passing
Player Cmp Att Yds TDs Int
B. Gabbert 20 28 166 0 0
A. Smith 2 4 13 0 0
Kentucky Passing
Player Cmp Att Yds TDs Int
W. Levis 21 32 303 3 1
Miami (OH) Rushing
Player Carries Yds Avg TDs
T. Shelton 7 50 7.1 1
B. Gabbert 10 28 2.8 0
K. Mozee 7 25 3.6 0
K. Tracy 2 7 3.5 0
J. Bester 2 3 1.5 0
K. Davis 2 -1 -0.5 0
A. Smith 2 -1 -0.5 0
Kentucky Rushing
Player Carries Yds Avg TDs
K. Smoke 7 32 4.6 0
J. McClain 6 16 2.7 0
L. Wright 3 10 3.3 0
R. Jefferson 2 10 5.0 0
W. Levis 7 -18 -2.6 0
Miami (OH) Receiving
Player Rec Yds Avg TDs
M. Hippenhammer 7 85 12.1 0
J. Walker 4 25 6.3 0
J. Coldiron 3 20 6.7 0
M. Marshall 2 17 8.5 0
T. Shelton 2 13 6.5 0
N. Muersch 2 13 6.5 0
K. Mozee 2 6 3.0 0
Kentucky Receiving
Player Rec Yds Avg TDs
T. Robinson 6 136 22.7 0
D. Key 4 53 13.3 1
B. Brown 3 45 15.0 0
K. Smoke 2 16 8.0 0
D. Harris 1 15 15.0 0
L. Wright 1 13 13.0 0
J. Dingle 2 11 5.5 0
C. Magwood 1 8 8.0 1
B. Bates 1 6 6.0 1
Miami (OH) Interceptions
Player Int Yards
E. Blakey 1 5
Kentucky Interceptions
Player Int Yards
Miami (OH) Punting
Player Punts Yards Avg
D. Dzioban 4 150 37.5
Kentucky Punting
Player Punts Yards Avg
C. Goodfellow 2 70 35.0
Miami (OH) Punt Returns
Player Ret Yards Average
Kentucky Punt Returns
Player Ret Yards Average
T. Robinson 2 25 12.5
Miami (OH) Kick Returns
Player Ret Yards Average
Kentucky Kick Returns
Player Ret Yards Average
B. Brown 2 121 60.5
Miami (OH) Missed FG
Player Length
Kentucky Missed FG
Player Length




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