clock menu more-arrow no yes mobile

Filed under:

Kentucky Wildcats News: Bowl practices are the start of next year’s QB battle

Backup quarterbacks are getting good reps in bowl practice.

NCAA Football: Southern Mississippi at Kentucky Mark Zerof-USA TODAY Sports

As Stephen Johnson’s Kentucky career comes to an end, Kentucky is looking to their future quarterback battle a little early.

Former starter Drew Barker seems the likely favorite to get his job back next year. He has 731 passing yards, five touchdowns and seven interceptions in his time at UK. Gunnar Hoak and Danny Clark are the other options, and there could be other(s) depending on Kentucky’s final incoming class.

With a bunch of quarterbacks getting reps, Johnson talked about the position as a whole.

“They’re all doing really, really well,” Johnson said. “Especially today. Everyone had a couple of missed throws here and there, but everyone is really progressing. What I love about this group, we’re all really close together. There’s no strife. There’s nothing that holds this group down. I’m looking forward to seeing who’s going to get that spot next year.”

Quarterback coach Darin Hinshaw talked about the players getting reps on Friday, according to Cats’ Pause.

“Stephen and Drew both went with the ones today,” Hinshaw said. “I had Gunnar get about equal reps. Give them more and more reps, all of those guys. Obviously the spring competition, all that, that’s what all this extra practice is. It gets you ready.”

Hinshaw went more in-depth on Hoak.

“Gunnar has been playing his butt off,” Hinshaw said. “He’s doing a great job. I’m really proud of him. He’s feisty and wants to be out there playing. He’s been doing a great job and we’re going to continue to press those guys and do the best we can.”

With all the potential future QBs getting reps, offensive coordinator Eddie Gran seems to think it’s needed for the position group.

“We’re not there yet,” Gran said. “I don’t think anyone is ever happy. When I say that, you just have to strive for perfection on offense. It’s execution. Sometimes we’re good, sometimes we’re not. It’s still the consistency part of it. The anticipation and throwing on time. Those are the things we’ve still gotta get better at for us to go to the next step.”