By LARRY VAUGHT
When Mark Stoops was recently asked about the perception that a Southeastern Conference school would recruit a junior college player only for immediate help, he said was not sure that was true — and obviously is not when it comes to UK quarterback Stephen Johnson.
Johnson transferred to UK in January and came out of spring practice No. 2 behind sophomore Drew Barker.
“Any junior-college player that we recruit, certainly we would not be recruiting that position if we didn’t feel like there was a great opportunity for that player to be the starter but nothing is ever guaranteed at any position, junior-college or high school. We have guys that are in your way – the same at that position,” Stoops said.
That doesn’t mean Stoops would rule out Johnson starting or playing next season.
“We certainly have a lot of confidence in Stephen, and I think he did a very good job and was very impressive (in spring practice),” Stoops said. “Stephen will have a role, and he’ll continue to compete.”
Stoops said nothing in the spring surprised Johnson and it will be the same next season.
“Stephen knows exactly where he stands when he came into our program and he knows exactly where he stands now,” Stoops said.