LEXINGTON, Ky. (AP) - Freshman Randall Cobb threw for one
touchdown and ran for two others in relief of Mike Hartline, and
Kentucky dominated Norfolk State 38-3 Saturday in its home opener.
Kentucky (2-0), which had kept rival Louisville's offense off
the scoreboard a week earlier, was looking to add some offensive
power to the defensive excitement it displayed against the
Cardinals. They got an immediate jolt from Cobb, a freshman who led
his high school to two straight state titles in Tennessee.
Cobb entered late in the first quarter, generating a loud
ovation from the sellout crowd. He immediately rewarded that
confidence without even throwing a pass, burning the Spartans (1-1)
with his speed.
First, he sprinted 16 yards untouched on a draw play to put
Kentucky near the red zone. Then, two plays later, he called his
own number again, dodging several defenders and hurdling another
for an 18-yard score - the first of Kentucky's four rushing TDs.
Cobb scored again on Kentucky's next possession, pushing away
several defenders on the sneak from a yard out. He also displayed
the strength of his left arm on the drive, firing a 27-yard strike
to his former high school teammate, Kyrus Lanxter, putting the
Wildcats in position.
Despite being outplayed by the freshman, Hartline returned in
the third quarter to a spattering of boos. Alternating drives with
Cobb throughout the second half, Hartline did lead scoring drives
culminating in a field goal and touchdown, both starting from prime
As Cobb helped revive Kentucky's passing attack, Derrick Locke
did the same from the backfield. Locke broke a 19-yard run, helping
to set up Cobb's first TD pass - a 13-yard fade to Dicky Lyons Jr.
Locke topped his previous effort in the fourth quarter when he
spun around one defender and sprinted past the rest for 68 yards -
the Wildcats' longest play of the season.
Kentucky, which generated only 63 yards on the ground last week
against Louisville, had nearly five times that total against an
overmatched opponent with 298. Locke led the way with five carries
for 96 yards.
Norfolk State, playing just its second game ever against a
Football Bowl Subdivision foe, got its lone points of the game
shortly before halftime on a 24-yard Justin Castellat field goal,
set up by a Cobb fumble.
It was one of few mistakes on the afternoon for the freshman,
who completed 6 of 11 passes for 87 yards and one interception.
(Copyright 2008 by The Associated Press. All Rights Reserved.)