Kentuckians were once proud of the university’s football team.
They even had a name for it: The Wildcats.
But now, just four years after the team’s historic 24-17 victory over Vanderbilt in the BCS National Championship game, it is in danger of losing its state title game.
The Wildcats have a chance to become the first Division I football team to lose a national title game in the same season since Kentucky won the title in 1954.
The last team to do it was the 1950 Kentucky-Louisville Cardinals, who lost in the Rose Bowl.
Now, as the team tries to win its fourth national title in the last five seasons, the Wildcats have been asked to make some bold moves.
One such move will be the hiring of a new head coach.
Kentucky’s current head coach, Bobby Petrino, is scheduled to announce his successor on Saturday.
Kentucky has never lost a game against the Wildcats since 2008, and this season it is just 1-6.
Coach Petrino has been under fire after a disappointing 6-5 start to the season.
The team has had a tough time of it this year, losing three straight games, including a 24-13 loss to Vanderbilt on Saturday night.
Kentuckians are hoping that Petrino will help them find a new direction and improve on a lackluster defense, which ranks 27th nationally in scoring defense (7.6 per game).
That defense allowed 3,721 yards to the Wildcats in 2016.
The defense allowed just 523 yards in 2015.
Kentucks coach Bobby Petrinos future?
It’s unclear exactly what the future holds for Petrino.
The most likely scenario would be that he gets fired, which is likely given the current coaching search underway.
Kentucky is reportedly considering a number of coaches, but it’s unlikely Petrino would be one of the candidates, according to ESPN’s Adam Schefter.
That said, Petrino’s reputation could also be hurt by his past.
Petrino was charged with assault against a student following an incident at an Atlanta bar.
The incident reportedly took place in 2014.
Kentville has not lost a home game since the 2011 season, when it defeated Arkansas State 31-21 in front of 2,500 fans at Bryant-Denny Stadium in Starkville.
That win, though, was a long time coming for the Wildcats.
They had not won a conference game in a decade.
Kentuckedys first win in the SEC came in 2009, when the Wildcats upset Georgia in Athens.
This year, Kentucky has never won in its home stadium.
Kenturus first win over a ranked team came in 2011 when the team defeated Tennessee 41-20 in Knoxville.
It was the first SEC win in Lexington since the 2008 season.
Kentuans biggest loss of the season came in 2014, when they fell to Auburn 23-20.
The 2015 team lost to Vanderbilt in front to 1,000 fans at Boone Pickens Stadium in Athens, Tennessee.
The Wildcats will be trying to win a fourth straight SEC championship game on Saturday, and they have the chance to be one-and-done in that season’s championship game.