Will Leavis

Kentucky QB Will Leavis calls the play in a 2021 victory over LSU.

LOUISVILLE, Ky. (WDRB) – The wait was a bit longer than expected Sunday afternoon, but the bowl destination for Kentucky football is a familiar one. The Wildcats will face Iowa in the Music City Bowl on New Year’s Eve at noon in Nashville.

It will be Kentucky’s sixth appearance in the Music City Bowl since 1999 and its first since 2017. Under coach Mark Stoops, the Wildcats are making an unprecedented seventh straight bowl appearance.

The Wildcats also are facing a familiar foe. They’ll see Iowa, Stoops’ alma mater, in a bowl game for the second straight season. Kentucky beat the Hawkeyes 20-17 in last season’s Citrus Bowl in Camping World Stadium.

Kentucky had lost 5 of 7 games before finishing the regular season with a win over Louisville. The Wildcats are waiting to hear whether starting quarterback Will Levis, who has declared for the NFL Draft, will play in the bowl game.

Iowa, which has the same 7-5 record as Kentucky, won 4 of its final 5 games, finishing the regular season with a 24-17 loss at home to Nebraska.

Sunday’s bowl announcements were delayed a bit by some behind the scenes squabbling over where Notre Dame would go for a bowl game. That back-and-forth affected some teams from both the SEC and ACC.

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