By LARRY VAUGHT
Naquez Pringle was recruited not only by Kentucky, but also Clemson and South Carolina while he was in high school in South Carolina. He ended up at Itawamba (Miss.) Community College where he got his easy to understand nickname — Tater Chip.
The defensive lineman said that nickname followed him to Kentucky when he signed with the Cats and enrolled in January. He also admitted his favorite potato chip is, naturally, Pringles.
“I got recruited by Kentucky in high school, but when I went to JUCO, they decided to recruit me again,” Pringle said. “I felt like, if you’re gonna recruit me in high school and then follow me to JUCO, why not?”
Here’s a few of the many things he talked about during a recent interview:
Question: What are workouts like here compared to junior college?
Pringle: “I can’t compare. It is a whole different level in there. Everything is extreme and intense. They mean business. It is a whole different atmosphere.”
Question: What was your weirdest travel experience in junior college?
Pringle: “We rode a bus for about five or six hours down south. That was the longest bus ride of my life. But JUCO helped me become the man I am today. It took me out of atmosphere where I was comfortable and took me into an environment where I needed to learn and grow up by myself.”
Question: What is the difference in training here?
Pringle: “It is a little different. Back in JUCO I had a strength coach, Ray Williams, one of the world’s strongest power lifters, and he always pushed us to our max, so it transcended over here. It is pretty good.”
Question: What did you learn from him?
Pringle: “How to stay healthy, how to squat better and how to keep my body in shape. I tried to compete with him. My max was like 700 and his world record is close to 800 to 900. Every time I think about that number, my back hurt.”