There have been so many times over the years with Kentucky football when you've gotten the big buildup and the "Blackout" and the snazzy new uniform combination — and out on the big stage, the Cats have fallen flat.
But there was the home team Saturday night, fighting back and fighting back, down 14 points early, then down 14 points late, only now it was a tie game with less than three minutes left and the ball and the ball game were both up in the air.
UK defensive tackle Mike Douglas, the senior from Florida, had knocked the football up in the air, batting a pass by South Carolina quarterback Dylan Thompson into the night sky.
And there, camping underneath it, was defensive end Bud Dupree, Kentucky's best player, the perfect guy in the perfect spot on a near-perfect night to gather it in and score from 6 yards out with 2:29 left.
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Touchdown. Upset. Pandemonium. Breakthrough. Watershed.
Final: Kentucky 45, South Carolina 38.
Breaking news: The same Kentucky that won four games over the last two seasons — total — is now 4-1 overall. The same Kentucky that did not win a conference game the last two seasons is now 2-1 in the SEC. The Kentucky that had not won back-to-back SEC games since 2009 has now won back-to-back SEC games.
Breaking news: This young Kentucky team can take a punch. More than one punch, it turns out.
Kentucky trailed 14-0 early in the second quarter. After rallying to take a 24-17 lead in the second half, Kentucky trailed 38-24 with 11:45 to Steve Spurrier, the South Carolina coach with a career 20-1 record against the Cats, and came back to win.
On offense, the Air Raid Cats won it as the Wildcat Cats.
Aside from Dupree's interception for what was the winning score, every Kentucky touchdown involved the Wildcat formation.
That included Patrick Towles throwing a 48-yard touchdown pass to a wide, wide, wide open Ryan Timmons off trickery from the Wildcat formation, as well as Jojo Kemp, King of the Wildcat, rushing for a career-high 131 yards, almost all out of the Wildcat, to the point where the 62,135 in attendance were chanting "Jo-jo, Jo-jo."
Did we mention that this was a self-appointed "Blackout" night, with everyone wearing black, including the Cats, who wore chrome helmets for the first time? We should mention that, because the crowd played a huge role.
And we should mention that the defense, which was gashed for much of the second half — South Carolina scored on its first three possessions of the second half — dug deep and found a way to stop South Carolina when it had to absolutely stop South Carolina.
To stop South Carolina was one thing, to turn that stop into a score was another.
It might get overlooked, but it shouldn't, that Demarco Robinson took the ensuing kickoff 43 yards to give UK good field position at the South Carolina 47.
Then the Wildcat Wonder kicked in yet again. Kentucky scored in seven plays, with Kemp going in from the 1-yard line and just like that you started to feel that maybe Mark Stoops' team wasn't out of it after all, just when you were ready to count it out.
After the Kentucky offense cut the Carolina lead to 38-31 with eight minutes left, the Kentucky defense found a way to force a Gamecocks punt after four plays.
And when Kemp tied it at 38 with 2:46 left, and South Carolina got the ball back, your memory couldn't help flash but back to the so many times over the years when for Kentucky that meant last-minute disappointment and heartbreak.
That was then. This is now. And now meant a Saturday night when the event surpassed the buildup, a rare occurrence for Kentucky football, which made it all the sweeter.
This was a Saturday night when the Cats knocked the ball up in the air and the Cats caught it and scored the winning touchdown.
On a "Blackout" night, Kentucky refused to be knocked out.