It has happened.
It happened just four years ago. LSU was the No. 1 college football team in country. Kentucky was the decided underdog. By the end of the appointed day, however, jaws did drop. Kentucky pulled the upset.
"Granted, just because it happened once, that's not a guaranteed thing that it will happen again," UK defensive back Mikie Benton admitted on Monday.
On paper, this doesn't have the look of a reissue. This is 2011, after all. That game four years ago was in UK's Commonwealth Stadium. The SEC matchup Saturday, with a 12:21 p.m. kickoff on the SEC Network, is at Tiger Stadium in Baton Rouge.
Les Miles' 4-0 Tigers might be just as nasty as the 2007 team that ended up carrying the national championship back to Louisiana. Meanwhile, Kentucky hasn't exhibited anything yet to make observers draw comparisons with the 2007 club that beat Florida State in the Music City Bowl to finish 8-5.
No wonder LSU opened as a nearly 30-point favorite.
"It's something we have to buy into," Benton said about the possibility of pulling an upset. "But we know if we work hard, it can happen again."
Offensive tackle Billy Joe Murphy sounded eager.
"What a great opportunity we have to play the No. 1 team in the country," he said. "I'd rather play the No. 1 team than the No. 2 team. You're playing the best. That's why you come here, to play the best. The SEC is the best."
This week's AP poll has judged LSU the best of the best. The Tigers opened the year with a 40-27 win over defending national runner-up Oregon at Cowboys Stadium in Arlington, Texas. After pounding Northwestern State 49-3, LSU invaded Starkville on a Thursday night and silenced the cowbells by mastering Mississippi State 19-6.
On Saturday night, LSU impressed the voters enough with its 47-21 whipping of West Virginia in Morgantown to leapfrog Oklahoma and take over the top spot.
"I guess you guys in the media picked them to be No. 1 this week. Why this week?" UK Coach Joker Phillips joked. "Why couldn't you wait another week to do it."
LSU has made a feast of opponents' mistakes. The Tigers have 11 takeaways while giving up the football just three times for a turnover margin of plus-eight.
"That's the most glaring thing," Phillips said of LSU's impressive statistics.
Meanwhile, Kentucky turned the ball over four times in its 48-10 loss to Florida Saturday, including three turnovers in the first six possessions as the Gators built a 21-3 lead.
On the heels of a home loss to hated Louisville, UK football fans believe it's never too early to panic.
"It's going to take a lot of improvement," said Phillips, who on Sunday was cherry-picking the data in search of Saturday positives.
"We've got to make the same type of improvement we made from game one to game two, game two to game three, but then play smarter. We've improved in techniques and assignment. Now we've got to improve mentally."
As for the mental aspect, there is the 2007 season scrapbook, which shows that Kentucky trailed LSU 27-14 with 3:49 left in the third quarter, yet rallied to send the game to overtime and won it 43-37.
"You can use that a little," Phillips said. "Some guys on this team remember that game. But we're in a world where kids don't watch a lot of football. They don't, especially when they were younger. I'm not sure this freshman class remembers that far back."
Murphy remembers. He was redshirting that season.
"When I first heard that LSU was No. 1, I thought, 'Well, they were No. 1 last time we played them.' So it's something that can be done. It's not impossible. We believe it can be done, and we've got to have a great week of practice."