By LARRY VAUGHT
Kentucky nose guard Matt Elam has taken a lot of criticism from fans over his play this season. Yet defensive coordinator D.J. Eliot said Wednesday that he thought Elam “played hard” in last week’s win over South Carolina.
“I thought he came off the ball harder and struck blockers. I thought he even rushed the passer decent. We got some good push.”
Kentucky plays at Alabama Saturday night. Alabama is the school that Elam turned down to play at UK. Alabama is also a power team that could result in Elam playing more.
“Matt, his strength is his size and he’s hard to move. Power run teams and teams that have bigger personnel groups out there are more of his fit,” Eliot said.
Head coach Mark Stoops was glad to see Elam playing more aggressive against South Carolina and even getting in on a quarterback sack.
“He definitely got around that quarterback behind the line of scrimmage, which was a good thing. He really played some good football,” Stoops said. “Matt played the best he’s played and he really had good effort and was disruptive in some of that stuff that goes unnoticed.”