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By LARRY VAUGHT

Offensive coordinator Randy Sanders admits it has been a “tough ride” for senior quarterback Morgan Newton this year. He was coming back from shoulder surgery, lost his starting job to Maxwell Smith, did not play well when he got to start at Florida and dropped to No. 3 on the depth chart behind true freshmen Jalen Whitlow and Patrick Towles.

“Tremendous character. Tremendous integrity. It speaks volume about the type of family he comes from. It speaks volumes about how much he’s bought into what coach (Joker) Phillips has been selling and I’ve been selling here about being a team player,” said Sanders. “As I’ve always said, he is all about Kentucky. He wants Kentucky to win. He wants Kentucky to do better. Just to accept that role and embrace it as he has, is phenomenal. There’s not many people that could do that.”

No, there’s not. Yet Sanders seemed more than a bit miffed that Newton was late getting to last week’s game because he was taking the law school admission test. He had signed up to take the test in mid-September without having any idea what time the Mississippi State game would start. He was also not slated to play even though that situation nearly changed when Towles went down with an ankle injury.

“I can promise you it wasn’t my decision. It was not my decision. So I’m going to leave it at that. I’m not going to get into it too much,” Sanders said about Newton’s late arrival.

Shame on Sanders. Newton wants to be an attorney. His shoulder is not 100 percent based on what UK coaches have said. His name had not been mentioned to the media by a UK coach all week. And aren’t football players supposed to be student-athletes? It’s not like Newton did not get to the game. And remember, he did not play and even this week Sanders is giving almost all the quarterback reps to Whitlow even though Newton is the only other experienced quarterback who is healthy enough to play if needed at Arkansas this Saturday.

So what happens if Whitlow goes down and Newton’s shoulder limits what he can do?

“We will do what Morgan can do, and obviously the shoulder not being completely healed is going to limit it a little bit. But he can still do a lot of things throwing,” Sanders said. “He has his comfort zone and we have to stay within that comfort zone as much as we can.”

7 Responses to Sanders knows Morgan Newton is all about Kentucky even if coach was not happy about Newton being late for game

  • GridironBlue says:

    Seems like nothing is EVER Randy Sanders’ fault. Never.

    Anyone else ever notice that?

  • Jim says:

    Yes, the offensive output and the lack of wins are part of Sanders’ responsibility. But, what has Newton taking an exam, when UK had two healthy QBs at the time, got to do with blaming Sanders? I see Newton being ready to play in this next game as crucial, now that Towles can not play. I see this whole admission thing as a non issue.

    By the way, if Newton is pressed into action at QB, should Whitlow get injured, I would hope that fans realize that he is playing with a bum shoulder. With Whitlow’s penchant for running, it could very well happen.

  • Fish says:

    It is a college coaches responsiblity to coach his position players both on and off the field. Apparently it does not happen with Kentucky football. There was a story posted on this website that last year a star wide receiver joined a fraternity and I believe had a baby, but none of the coaches were aware of it. That is hard to believe. It seems there is no oversite off or on the field. But how would the media know, no media is allowed to attend practices. It is status quo week end and week out. Towles is an excellent example. He was put on the scout team to sit the remainder of the season with no further evaluation. UK gets whipped every week, but nothing changes, same players play, same beat down score, unless someone gets hurt and the coaches are forced to play someone else. Newton is all about Kentucky. I have to wonder was Kentucky really ever all about him?

  • bruce sampson says:

    Larry, I disagree. Morgan Newton was bestowed a scholarship to play football at the University of Kentucky. He has an obligation, whether he plays or not, to show up on time for every game. What kind of policy is established when any given UK football player can decide for themselves when to attend a game? It would be chaos and a breakdown in team discipline. Moreover, Newtown is a senior and a team leader. The UK football team and its coaching staff has been experiencing major stress, scrutiny and criticism this season, all the more reason for the “troops to band together” and not individually opt to do their own thing.

    While I applaud Morgan Newton for his motivation to improve himself by seeking to attend law school, the undisputed facts are that the LSAT is offered 4 times in a year, to wit: June, October, December and January. Thus, he had at least 3 other dates in which he could have taken the exam which would not conflicted with his obligation (moral and legal) to at least attend his team’s game.

    Your criticism of Sanders, “Shame on Sanders” for speaking out about Newton’s no show was unjustified.

  • BD WELLS says:

    Why did it matter if he was late, he didnt ever get in the game! No ones ever right but S
    Tenn-Randy or “the joke”. But nothing is ever their fault. These two idiots threw him under the bus in the Fla game, but didnt have the manhood to admit it. It’s time for Tenn-Randy to go home, and “the joke” to just go!

  • F Snipp says:

    I wish I had the ability to coach this team. You play with what you have and you play to your strenghts, neither has seemed to be the case at UK football. I would like to see us play hardnose grind it out football. Use ten or 15 plays and make our team so good at just those plays that no one can stop you.
    If you watch Alabama play Tennessee, count out how many plays they are actually using. They just make their players the best at certain areas so that they can have success on the football field. Yes they have talent,but we also have talent. Get the game back to being simple and use your head to play to your teams abilities not just react to the other teams players. Make the other team make adjustments, not your team. Go on the offense that scores the points Defense is necessary but offense puts the points on the board. rarely does a defensive football team score the points.

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