With numerous players leaving the offensive line due to transferring or entering the NFL Draft, Kentucky knows that they will have to beef up the offensive line from either the transfer portal or recruiting
Well, they started to work on it this year by adding Aba Selm and Hayes Johnson, who are both from Kentucky.
When Johnson signed his National Letter of Intent, there was no question he wasn’t going to play anywhere else but Kentucky.
“I mean honestly, it is just kind of like what I said when I committed, it is just one of the things that I dreamed of doing since I was a little kid,” Johnson tells A Sea of Blue. “I got the opportunity, and I sure wasn’t going to turn it down.”
As for how it feels to be able to play for his home state of Kentucky, he added some insights.
“It’s just immense pride,” Johnson says. “I mean I take so much pride in the University and to be able to represent not only the University of Kentucky but the state of Kentucky and the people, and the people in my hometown, and plenty of other towns like this across the state. It’s truly amazing.”
Johnson has some big goals while he is here at Kentucky, and that is to compete for the SEC Championship.
“I mean personally, I mean, I’ve been a Kentucky fan all of my life, and I know what we all want,” Johnson tells us. “We all want to go to Atlanta, I mean that’s really it, to get to work and get to Atlanta.”
Another step for Kentucky to get back to where it used to be successful is to have the Big Blue Wall great again, and Johnson knows all about it due to John Schlarman’s impact.
“I mean, honestly, it is just to continue what Coach [John] Schlarman started,” Johnson says. “With Drake [Jackson] and Landon [Young] and then the guys’ to continue that legacy of the Big Blue Wall.”
When Johnson does step on campus, he is ready to learn from the veterans on the team.
“From my time that I got to spend up there in the spring, I got to learn a fair amount under Eli [Cox] and that is something with him coming back I continue to want to do is learn under him,” Hayes says. “It feels like it wasn’t too long that Jager [Burton], I remember Jager signing, but he has been there [for a while.] I mean just a lot of the older guys and just how stuff operates.
As for when Johnson will be at Kentucky, he plans to enroll by the end of January.
He will have some big shoes to fit, but with the help of Zach Yenser and Drake Jackson, Johnson should be in good hands to be a big factor of the Big Blue Wall for years to come.