It's not only the players who need to get into the rivalry frame of mind.
Fans have to get there, too.
In a year when many say our state's marquee football rivalry lacks its normal sizzle, I'm here to help.
Get back into a Kentucky-Louisville state of thought by taking my Governor's Cup rivalry quiz.
1 According to the Glantz-Culver Line, Kentucky is a 13-point favorite this Saturday against Louisville. Can you name the last time UK was picked to beat U of L in the odds that run in the Herald-Leader?
A.) 2000 B.) 2003
C.) 2007 D.) 2008
Answer: B. UK has not been the favorite against U of L since the Cats were a 51/2-point pick in Rich Brooks' first game in 2003. The Cardinals won 40-24.
Extra credit: Name the last year Kentucky beat Louisville as the pre-game favorite?
Extra credit answer: UK has not beaten Louisville as the favorite since 1998, when as an 11-point pick it smashed U of L 68-34.
2Know your trash talkers. What prominent University of Louisville figure in the run-up to one year's Governor's Cup contest publicly said that Kentucky treated U of L like "red-headed step-children?"
A.) Howard Schnellenberger
B.) Tom Jurich
C.) John L. Smith
D.) Bobby Petrino
Answer: C. Smith made the remark before the 1999 UK-U of L matchup. The Cardinals had their head coach's back, hanging a 56-28 spanking on UK in Commonwealth Stadium.
3 It is often said that losing the Governor's Cup ruins the defeated team's season. But is that necessarily so? How many times has the loser of the Kentucky-Louisville game gone on to play in a bowl?
A.) 0 B.) 1
C.) 4 D.) 6
Answer: C. Kentucky lost to Louisville in 1999 and 2006, but played in the Music City Bowl each season.
U of L lost to UK in 1998 and 2002, but went to the '98 Motor City Bowl and the '02 GMAC Bowl.
4 The most painful Louisville defeat in the modern Governor's Cup came in 2007, when Kentucky's Andre Woodson hit Steve Johnson with a 57-yard touchdown bomb with 28 seconds left to give UK a 40-34 upset of the No. 9 Cardinals.
Who was the Louisville cornerback that Johnson beat on the game-deciding play?
A). Richard Raglin
B). Bobby Buchanan
C.) Rod Council
D.) Woodny Turenne
Answer: D. Turenne, a junior-college transfer, cheated into the middle of the field allowing Johnson to break shockingly free down the sideline.
5 Know your trash talkers. What prominent University of Kentucky figure in the run-up to one year's Governor's Cup contest referred to the Louisville football program as "over-marketed and under-performing?"
A.) Larry Ivy B.) Mitch Barnhart
C.) Lee Todd D.) Rich Brooks
Answer: C. The University of Kentucky president made the remark in advance of the 2006 UK-U of L game. It had a powerful motivating effect — on Louisville. The Cardinals obliterated the Wildcats 59-28. It launched a 12-1 season for U of L that ended with an Orange Bowl victory.
6 Tim Couch threw four touchdown passes in a win over Louisville in 1997 and seven TD tosses in a victory against U of L in 1998.
However, his first college scoring pass came when he relieved Billy Jack Haskins in 1996 in a game U of L won 38-14. Who caught Couch's first UK touchdown pass?
A.) Isaac Curtis B.) Craig Yeast
C.) Kio Sanford D.) Kevin Coleman
Answer: A. Tight end Curtis, the son of the former Cincinnati Bengals star wide receiver of the same name, hauled in a 20-yard strike from Couch in the left-front corner of the end zone.
7 The most painful Kentucky defeat in the modern Governor's Cup came in 2000. On the final play of regulation in a 34-34 tie, UK had an 18-yard field goal to win the game. It was blocked. Who was the UK place-kicker?
A.) Seth Hanson B.) Brandon Sanders
C.) Taylor Begley D.) Marc Samuel
Answer: B. A walk-on from Woodford County, Sanders had his chance at rivalry heroics blocked by Curry Burns. U of L won 40-34 in overtime. Sanders would never attempt another place-kick in a Kentucky uniform.
8 Name any coach who has coached in the Governor's Cup rivalry and has never won?
A.) Howard Schnellenberger
B.) Bill Curry
C.) Ron Cooper
D.) Steve Kragthorpe
Answer: A and D. Schnellenberger, who did so much to get the UK-U of L series started, lost to Bill Curry and UK in 1994. It was the only time "The Howard" coached in the rivalry.
Kragthorpe is 0-2 against UK — and its entirely possible that any realistic chance he has of surviving as Louisville coach depends on changing that this Saturday.