Well it finally happened folks. We got the schedule and we got a start date! We finally get to see the first step for hopefully another wild, but historic season in the Bluegrass.
With practice starting up on August 17th, here are a few position battles to watch as we push towards opening weekend in September.
Probably the only real question mark we see on both sides of the ball comes from this spot. With Logan Stenberg off to Detroit who is going to step up to help one of the best offense lines in the country?
Kenneth Horsey was the favorite to win the job as spring practice happened briefly, and probably should still be considered the favorite especially after the shutdown these last several months. That doesn’t mean there won’t be some guys eager to take earn that early PT.
Newcomers Jeremy Flax and RJ Adams, are two names to keep an eye on to make a push for that position.
Flax, a JUCO product of Independence in Kansas was known as one of the top OL JUCO prospects in the country. If you remember, Auburn was recruiting him to come in and start immediately. Recruited by Kentucky as a tackle though, it will be interesting to see how he adapts to the position.
As for Adams, he is a true freshman, but a guy that was known as one of the top OG prospects in the country. Rivals had him ranked as high as the 16th best guard recruit, and 247 had him at 23. At 6’3 and 320 lbs, he’s already got the body to fight for minutes now it just come down to proving it on the field.
Now this one Is going to be fun to watch. It’s 100% going to be a running game featuring all 3 backs of Rose, Smoke, and Rodriguez every Saturday. It is going to be interesting to see who takes the reigns in crunch time and that battle is going to start August 17th.
All three backs bring a different skill trait to the table. AJ Rose brings a good mix of power and speed. Kavosiey Smoke is the speed back of the group. Then Chris Rodriguez brings that leg churning, power running that all of BBN came to love from Benny Snell.
Will it be the veteran in Rose, or will Mark Stoops and Eddie Gran decide one of the younger guys fits the role better? Do we see a mixture of the three throughout the season, with whoever has hot hand that night? Again, this is going to be an up and down battle for those crunch time minutes. I don’t know about you, but I’m PUMPED to see these guys get to work.
You wouldn’t think there would be position battle in one of the top secondaries in the country last year, but there is going to be one.
Davonte Robinson is coming back from a season-ending quad injury year. In the 2018 season, he played in all 13 games, recording 42 tackles, 3.0 TFL, and 2 fumble recoveries playing in the back up safety role to Mike Edwards and Darius West.
Last year, we saw great production from power hitting Yusuf Corker and a mixture of Jordan Griffin and Tyrell Aijan. With Robinson set to come back this year, how will the downs be split up? Will we see a lot of these guys rotating in as nickelback?
Either way Stoops and Steve Clinkscale are surely biting at the bit to get to work with this crew. Should be a great storyline to follow as the next few weeks ramp up.
Who knows what lies ahead before opening weekend in the SEC. Who knows if the season will be canceled before the 17th.
But if everything goes as planned, hopefully you can have as much fun as I will following these position battles leading up to opening week.