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By LARRY VAUGHT
Kentucky offensive coordinator Neal Brown insisted again Monday that he was in no “extreme hurry” to choose a starting quarterback. However, the selection is not far away with UK opening the season Aug. 31 against Western Kentucky.
“I think we’re going to let the process play out. We’re not in an extreme hurry by any means, but I think we’ve got to start narrowing it down and getting the reps focused more in.”
Brown says he tailors what the offense does around the particular skills of quarterbacks Jalen Whitlow, Max Smith and Patrick Towles, the three sophomores battling for the No. 1 spot.
“Really what we’ve done is we’ve put the whole package in. Then obviously, depending on who the quarterback is, the package will be narrowed,” Brown said. “I think that’s the hardest part. I have to constantly remind myself when we’re in installation mode or we’re in this preseason camp mode, we’re basically throwing the whole offense at these guys.
“So sometimes there’s more mistakes than I would like, but I’ve got to keep in the back of my head that during game week, we’re so much more focused down and narrowed down than we are right now. That’s the way we’ll handle it. We’ve got the whole package and then we’ll narrow it down when we get into game week.”
Head coach Mark Stoops said the coaches were “getting some feel” about a quarterback decision.
“We’re getting a feel for it, where we need to go, but we’ll let it play out a little bit longer and see where we’re at,” Stoops said.
He did note that Smith, the starter last year until he was injured, has been throwing more in practice after being limited earlier to protect his shoulder.
“Seems to be no issues that I’ve heard of with his shoulder or anything like that, throwing,” Stoops said.
Stoops did say Saturday’s expected scrimmage will be a “big day” for the quarterback position battle as well as other.