The University of Kentucky has been busy over the past week. The awards watch lists have been released, preseason All-Americans and Senior Bowl players are all known.
KENTUCKY PRESEASON ALL-AMERICANS
Senior Punter Max Duffy has been named a First-Team Preseason All-American. This is no surprise, the Australian-born punter has been one of the best at the position in the country for the last few years.
Two more Wildcats have been named to the Second-team list. Center Drake Jackson and tackle Darian Kinnard have been big reasons why this offensive line has been the best in the conference.
PRESEASON UNITAS GOLDEN ARM
Quarterback Terry Wilson is back, and healthy. He’s also on the list of guys to watch for the Johnny Unitas Golden Arm Award. The accolade is given to the nation’s top Senior passer. While he is a dual-threat, Wilson has a cannon, and he loves to use it.
PRESEASON SENIOR BOWL
Five Kentucky players made the top 250 for the Reese’s Senior Bowl. Defensive lineman Quinton Bohanon, cornerback Brandin Echols, center Drake Jackson, tight end Justin Rigg, and tackle Landon Young will be watched for invitations to the postseason All-Star game for graduates.
SMOKE AND ROSE
These are not the only players we should be watching. Josh Ali is poised for a breakout year. Since Lynn Bowden’s departure for the NFL, the top receiver role now belongs to Ali. With Wilson back behind center, we should be seeing a lot of big plays.
Behind Wilson, sit two Cats that will make the country pay attention. Kavosiey Smoke and AJ Rose combined for over 1400 yards and 12 touchdowns last year, and that was behind Bowden’s 1400 yard and 13 touchdown performance.
This team can run, and I know Gran is looking to be more balanced, but we will likely have two 1000 rushers on our hands by the end of the season. The year will be shorter than usual, but I expect to see a lot of the running game behind one of the best lines in the nation.
The wins may not come as easy as they have over the last few years. We do play a tough SEC schedule, but this team will have a lot of power. I can’t wait to see it.
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