Being ranked AP preseason top 25 for the first time since 1978, the Kentucky Wildcats are entering this season with high expectations. Given those high expectations, Mark Stoops and Co will attempt to take another big step for the program.
Of course, it will ultimately be up to how the players perform on the field, but there is a lot of talent on the roster, including a loaded tight end room that the staff has a lot of confidence in.
According to offensive coordinator Rich Scangarello, “three or four or five in that room that are going to play on Sundays,” as he said earlier this month on media day.
A notable member of that group that Scangarello has been impressed with is in-state redshirt freshman, Jordan Dingle.
- Position: Tight end
- Class: Redshirt Freshman
- Measurements: 6-foot-4, 236 lbs.
- Hometown: Bowling Green, Kentucky
- School: Bowling Green High School
- Recruiting Rankings: 3-star, top-500 recruit and the No. 21 tight end in the country (247 Sports Composite)
Last season, the Bowling Green native appeared in only four games in his freshman campaign and was able to retain his redshirt. In his limited appearances, Dingle caught two catches for 54 yards.
Through the summer and fall camp, Dingle has been a name that has consistently been mentioned, and he seems to be ready to make an impact.
After last Saturday’s scrimmage - the final scrimmage before the regular season - Stoops called Dingle “a complete tight end”. In the scrimmage, Dingle used his impressive catch radius and caught four passes.
With all the talent in the tight-end room, playing time will be at a premium, but Dingle is a versatile piece that can line up at fullback, receiver, or tight end.
Despite having many talented tight ends in recent years, the Big Blue Nation has expressed concern over the inconsistent use of tight ends. With Scangarello coming from a San Francisco 49ers system that is heavily reliant on multiple tight-end personnel, and with a talented tight-end group, this could be the year we see that narrative change.
However it plays out, it looks like it is going to be difficult to keep Dingle off the field in some fashion.