By LARRY VAUGHT
Kentucky football fans should have got an added boost of optimism from the Southeastern Conference Media Days preseason predictions.
The media picked UK to finish FOURTH in the SEC Eastern Division. Tennessee was No. 1 followed by Florida and Georgia.
But Vanderbilt, Missouri and finally South Carolina were all picked behind UK.
“All of our guys have really matured, taking it upon themselves to do the little things that coaches normally have to ask us to do,” senior running back JoJo Kemp said. “Doing the extra work, getting in the weight room, watching the extra film, deleting those mistakes you have seen from us before, winning those close games.
“Guys don’t want that same feeling guys have had before, going 5-7, going 5-7, being so close and not being able to finish. Guys have taken it upon themselves, when coaches have given us breaks, to go home and come back early.
“Just come and be at the facilities, doing things that coaches didn’t ask them to do. Guys really don’t want that same feeling. Going 5-7 and being so close and getting over that hump.”