By LARRY VAUGHT
Kentucky offensive coordinator Neal Brown says there is some “ebb and flow” to the team’s quarterback competition as he continues to evaluate who should be the No. 1 quarterback when UK opens the season Aug. 31 against Western Kentucky.
“They’re all doing some positive things. I think Reese Phillips probably had as good a day today as anybody,” said Brown after Saturday’s scrimmage. “But we’re getting closer to a decision. Obviously, this is one of the things that will go into the equation, along with all the spring. We’ve got to get centered on who we are as an offensive team. We’ve got to figure out who our playmakers are at wideout because I didn’t really feel like we had anyone step up at wideout today.”
“They (the quarterbacks) had their highs and lows. It’s really hard to say. I guess whenever I see you all (in the media) next, Monday or Tuesday, whatever day it is, I’ll be able to give you a little bit better feedback. Being down here on field the level, sometimes you can’t see. We had some drops. So they made some better throws than what I thought because we were dropping the ball some later in the scrimmage.”
Head coach Mark Stoops said while the scrimmage was important for quarterbacks Jalen Whitlow, Max Smith and Patrick Towles, it won’t offset what went on during spring practice or in preseason camp before the scrimmage.
“We’re going to sit down here and we’ll go through it as a staff and see where we’re at. And if we make any decisions, we’ll let you know. But we’re going to work through some of that for sure this week,” Stoops said Saturday.
Brown has hinted UK might not reveal who the starter is to complicate Western’s game preparation. Stoops isn’t sure it really matters.
“I’m sure they’re working for both – all three – of the quarterbacks, or both styles, if you will. If they think, with some of the quarterbacks being able to run the ball, you know what I mean?” Stoops said.
Stoops said a lack of consistency has made it hard to pick a top quarterback.
“Every time you start thinking you’re getting closer to making a decision, maybe some things go good or go bad with the other guys. I think we’ve been good and patient,” Stoops said. “Like I said, it’s not at a point where we’re getting antsy about it, but we’ll look at all the information, all the data and see if we have some player decisions. Then we can let them know and move forward.”