For defensive lineman Quinton Bohanna and Phil Hoskins, playing an all-SEC schedule in 2020 has changed the mindset of a new generation of Kentucky football players that have little respect for teams outside of the conference.
In fact, a recent podcast episode with Kentucky Sports Radio’s Nick Roush revealed that the duo picked Tennessee (Hoskins) and Florida (Bohanna) as the Wildcats’ most heated rivals, with little mention of the annual Governor’s Cup game against Louisville, a member of the Atlantic Coast Conference.
“I couldn’t have asked for a better opportunity, going up against the best of the best of the best,” said Hoskins of the 2020 SEC schedule. “I don’t care what nobody says, I feel like if we throw some of these players from these other divisions into SEC games, they’re gonna get smashed. I don’t care what the politics talking about — oh he’s a good offensive lineman, he’s a good wide receiver — I want them to come play SEC ball and then see if they are as good as everybody’s saying because some conferences I feel like are just pee wee conferences.”
Bohanna, who has declared for the NFL draft, said that he’s never considered Louisville to be a rival as Kentucky has dominated the past two games, winning 45-13 in 2019 and 56-10 in 2018. Louisville last won the Governor’s Cup in 2017 behind former Heisman Trophy winner Lamar Jackson at quarterback, who also led the Cardinals to the win in 2015 to cap off five straight victories that began in 2011.
“Auburn’s got Bama and we got Louisville?,” said Bohanna. “We knew we were going to dominate just off strength. Like I told you, it’s different body types. Even when they had Lamar (Jackson), their O-line wasn’t anything. It wasn’t so much a rivalry to me. Maybe with Randall Cobb back in those days or whatever it was an intense rivalry, but not so much to me.”
Louisville finished 3-7 this past season in the ACC that included Notre Dame and Clemson, both of which played in the College Football Playoffs. Alabama, representing the SEC, won the national title with a 52-24 win over Ohio State.
“No other team can play like a SEC team,” said Hoskins, who has yet to decide on a possible return for 2021. “I don’t care what nobody in America says. There’s no other team that play like SEC teams do.”
On the season, Hoskins made 30 tackles and had an interception against Georgia. Bohanna finished the year with 10 tackles and a fumble recovery.