Mark Stoops says he now plans to play multiple quarterbacks against the Missouri Tigers this week.
During the Kentucky Wildcats’ matchup with the Vanderbilt Commodores, linebacker Kash Daniel suffered a hand injury that turned out to be a fracture.
Kash’s toughness is through the roof because the Kentucky native wrapped his hand up, gutted it out and finished the game. Not only did he finish the game, but he led the team in tackles.
After the game, Kash confirmed that he broke his hand but was confident in the thought that he would be ready to go and not miss one play due to the injury.
Well, it seems like he is correct.
Monday morning, Kash had to have surgery on his hand, and Stoops said he is day-to-day for practice this week, but he fully expects him to play this weekend against the Missouri Tigers.
That comes as great news for the Kentucky defense because Kash has had a major impact on the success that this defense has had against SEC opponents, holding them to just 9.5 points per game.
However, this weekend will be a challenge for Kash as he will have to play with a large cast on his hand which will make tackling more difficult and should an interception opportunity present itself, it will be very difficult to come up with the catch.
Also, in the Vandy game the Cats had yet another field goal missed in a crucial part of the game with the score sitting at 7-7. Kicking has been a struggle this season and could’ve saved the Texas A&M game.
Miles Butler is now 3 of 7 (42.9%) on the year and it is frustrating after all the kicking success we had with Austin MacGinnis.
Its obvious that fans want to see a kicking change with freshman Chance Poore sitting on the sidelines and it appears that Stoops is considering it.
When asked about Chance Poore, Stoops said, “He was going in on the next kick”.
Stoops then gave a “We’ll see” when asked if Poore will be the next kicker to take a field goal. It is now a real possibility that Poore could be the guy taking the kicks against Missouri this Saturday.
At this point, I don’t see why he wouldn’t give Chance a shot and see what he can do. If it wasn’t for Benny Snell, that missed field goal against Vandy could’ve cost them the game and we know how many times the kicking game has won us games in recent years.
But above all else, for Kentucky to win out and go to the SEC Championship, the quarterback play has to take a big step forward.
Does that mean Gunnar Hoak could eventually replace Terry Wilson?
While Stoops isn’t ready to make a change, he is bracing for a possible switch to Hoak at some point.
“Terry is our starting quarterback,” Stoops said Monday. “He’s going to start this week, but we certainly need to look at the other guys and see if they can get an opportunity to get in there and play and help us win. We’ll have a plan, and we’ll work Gunnar pretty extensively this week and have him ready to play as well.
“I owe an obligation to the rest of our team to put us in a position to win games, so you have to have other guys ready to go.”
The fact that Stoops is no longer giving Wilson a full vote of confidence is telling, and now he’s admitting Hoak will get more practice reps going forward. Based on this, it’s safe to think we’ll see Hoak playing at Missouri this week if Wilson gets off to another rough start.
Against Vanderbilt, Wilson had two early turnovers, one being a fumble and the other an inaccurate backwards pass that turned into a fumble the Commodores recovered.
Wilson has done a lot for this team, whether it was his big game at Florida or his ability to scramble and force defenses to account for him, which allows the running backs to get more open lanes.
Most combined rushing yards by a quarterback/running back duo among Power 5 schools this season: 1,326 (Trace McSorley/Miles Sanders, Penn State); 1,263 (Terry Wilson/Benny Snell, Kentucky)— Corey Price (@coreyp08) October 21, 2018
Still, Kentucky has scored just 17 offensive points in its last 10 quarters (and the overtime period against Texas A&M), so if something doesn’t chance soon, Hoak is going to be running the offense.