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By LARRY VAUGHT
Kentucky offensive coordinator Neal Brown said he was not impressed by any of his receivers during Saturday’s scrimmage and UK’s quarterbacks combined to throw four interceptions (no one would say which quarterback had interceptions).
“There’s going to be some guys that made movements that maybe I didn’t see, just for whatever reason — ball didn’t get thrown their way or whatever it might be,” Brown said. “We played well early. We really came out of the gates, and that’s been one of our focal points the last three or four days is really starting well. We started well, we just got to get the end of it. And to be honest, it’s give-and-take. It’s give-and-take. We’ve had some upper hand some days, the defense has had some upper hand a few other days. If one side’s winning all the time, you start getting worried.”
Head coach Mark Stoops seemed to agree.
“Really today, I’d say the defense had the upper hand. The defense had the better day, had some critical turnovers. The offense did some really good things, had some really good drives early, and I believe we got one in or so and then a couple field goals. Maybe two scores in early there,” Stoops said. “But overall, the defense got some good pressure, got some good turnovers and once we got in all the situational parts of the scrimmage, the defense had the upper hand.”
Stoops was upset Friday with what he said was a “wasted practice” and he felt the team did play better Saturday.
“We played a little bit better fundamentally. We played a little bit better up front. We were able to incorporate a few more wrinkles within the defense,” the UK coach said. “But some of that was just poor execution by the offense. We had some dropped passes show up again today, which we haven’t seen too much of through camp, so that hurt, and some turnovers.”
“I think the offense, we had some missed tackles and we had some big plays early, and that was very alarming. And then we started settling in and playing good team defense. Because if you have a bunch of guys in the right position and you’re making them execute, you can make it a lot more difficult on the offense. I think that’s what I noticed as the scrimmage went on. Guys were where they’re supposed to be.
“We were a little bit more solid up front. We were making cleaner tackles. And the defense was staying on the right side of the chains. Early, they were getting five, six (yards) or breaking a big run and (the defense) started to settle in a little bit as the scrimmage went on.
“I think our players mean well and they care. I think we to continue got develop an attitude on both sides of the ball and special teams. I think I see some guys that are trying to make plays, that mean right, that just don’t have the attitude that we need right now.”
Brown said freshman running back JoJo Kemp “made some plays early” and that the starting offensive line blocked well early in the scrimmage.
“I think John George needs to be more consistent. Like I said, Jojo was having a nice day. Rolled his ankle a little bit. Nothing major, but didn’t get to finish the scrimmage. I’m trying to think who else. Mobley. Dyshawn ran hard. I don’t know what his overall stats were, but he ran hard. Didn’t put the ball on the ground. Coming off that (hernia injury), this being his first full week, I thought he did some nice things,” Brown said.
Senior Raymond Sanders was limited to a few touches.
“We just didn’t get him a whole lot of carries. He’s got a lot of carries in camp so far, and we kind of got a good feel for what he can do. No, he’s not hurt,” Brown said.
In a bit of a surprise, Max Godby got the bulk of the work at center. The position battle was thought to be between Zach Myers, who is out with an ankle injury, and Zach West, who rotated at left guard where he played last year with Teven Eatmon.”