A nonprofit publication of the Kentucky Center for Public Service Journalism

Kentucky senior Kash Daniel expected to play Saturday despite controversial play against Florida

By Keith Taylor Kentucky Today Kash Daniel is expected to play Saturday when Kentucky takes on Mississippi State in Starkville. Earlier this week, a video posted on Twitter by WYMT in Hazard, showed the senior Kentucky linebacker allegedly gripping Florida quarterback Kyle Trask’s ankle following a two-point version attempt in the fourth quarter. Kash Daniel reacts after intercepting a pass against...

Kentucky’s running game faring well through first three games despite the loss of Benny Snell Jr.

By Keith Taylor Kentucky Today How is Kentucky faring without Benny Snell? Through the first three games, the Wildcats rank No. 6 in the Southeastern Conference in rushing offense, averaging 185 yards per game. Most of that success can be attributed to an experienced offensive line. Kentucky coach Mark Stoops was pleased with the team’s running attack in a 29-21 loss to Florida. Kavosiey Smoke collected...

Kentucky moves past disappointing loss to Gators, set sights on Saturday’s matchup with Bulldogs

By Keith Taylor Kentucky Today Kentucky coach Mark Stoops has already moved past Florida. The next step is getting his players focused on the first road game of the season. “That’s a big focus this week,” Stoops said Monday. “I talk about each situation every week and moving on to Mississippi State, we don’t have much time to dwell on (the loss). Next man up, the next battle, the next punch...

Mark Maynard: Make room for yet another chapter in Kentucky football’s book of heartbreak

Kentucky wrote another chapter in its Book of Heartbreak on Saturday night. The Wildcats can make Stephen King novels look like children’s books. This one stung, just like all the others. Starring in a recurring role of protagonist was the Florida Gators, who woke up behind a backup quarterback to pull the rug out from under the Wildcats one more time. What once looked like certain rush-the-field...

Kentucky falters down the stretch, can’t hold lead in tough loss to ninth-ranked Florida Gators

By Keith Taylor Kentucky Today Kentucky ended a 31-game losing skid to Florida last season, but starting a streak of their own proved to be a difficult task for the Wildcats in a 29-21 setback to the ninth-ranked Gators Saturday night. Florida (3-0, 1-0 Southeastern Conference) scored 19 unanswered — all in the fourth quarter — after its starting quarterback Feleipe Franks went down with an injury...

UK’s Sawyer Smith ‘good to go’ ahead of Saturday’s debut as starting quarterback against Florida

By Keith Taylor Kentucky Today Sawyer Smith is set for his debut as Kentucky’s starting quarterback. “I”m getting comfortable out there with the game plan,” Smith said Wednesday. “I’m throwing it to everybody and I’m good to go.” Previously a backup, the Troy transfer was thrust into the starting role after veteran Terry Wilson suffered a season-ending knee injury in the Wildcats’...

Jamie Vaught: Cats should still fare well, despite loss of Wilson; Bob Stoops opens up about storied career

While it was heartbreaking to see quarterback Terry Wilson’s season-ending injury during Kentucky’s win over Eastern Michigan last weekend, I still think the Wildcats will be okay this season with backup QB Sawyer Smith, a graduate transfer from Troy who started the last seven games of the 2018 campaign, helping his team to a Dollar General Bowl victory, and earning bowl’s MVP honors. Before...

Noted pass rusher Xavier Peters cleared to play, giving Kentucky a boost on defensive side of the ball

By Keith Taylor Kentucky Today It took a while, but Xavier Peters got the answer he was looking for on Tuesday. The Kentucky outside linebacker and Florida State transfer was cleared to play this season and will have four years remaining. Peters appeared in two games with the Seminoles last year and preserved a season of eligibility. Xavier Peters was cleared to play for the Wildcats Tuesday and will...

Stoops confident backup quarterback Sawyer Smith can pick up where injured Terry Wilson left off

By Keith Taylor Kentucky Today Mark Stoops isn’t concerned about his football team after starting quarterback Terry Wilson went down with a season-ending knee injury in a 38-17 win over Eastern Michigan last weekend. Stoops is confident in backup Sawyer Smith’s ability to lead the Wildcats and the former Troy signal-caller will get his first start with the Wildcats against ninth-ranked Florida...

Wildcats top Eastern Michigan 38-17; quarterback Terry Wilson a concern after third quarter knee injury

By Keith Taylor Kentucky Today Mark Stoops got the start he wanted against Eastern Michigan on Saturday night, but it took a while for the Wildcats to put the Eagles away in a 38-17 victory. Just two years ago Eastern Michigan fought Kentucky from start to finish, with the Wildcats escaping with a 24-20 triumph. This time it wasn’t even close, in fact, the lopsided margin could have been more if...

Ky. coach Mark Stoops hoping Cats can avoid past mistakes in Saturday’s matchup against E. Michigan

By Keith Taylor Kentucky Today The last time Eastern Michigan visited Kroger Field, the Eagles took Kentucky down to the wire before the Wildcats escaped with a 24-20 triumph. Mark Stoops wants to avoid a repeat performance Saturday night. “They gave us one heck of a game a couple of years ago, so we know they’re another good football team from the (Mid-American Conference) — very well-coached,...

Keith Taylor: Kentucky’s improved recruiting and talent showing as Wildcats open 2019 season

Kentucky’s football team hasn’t reached the same level as Southeastern Conference power and national title contender Alabama, but the Wildcats are enjoying similar success when it comes to winning football games. During the past 14 encounters, the Wildcats have recorded 11 victories and have lost just three times. Among Southeastern Conference foes, only the Crimson Tide has a better record than...

Kentucky quarterback Terry Wilson taking major leap forward two games into his junior campaign

By Keith Taylor Kentucky Today Terry Wilson’s leadership showed in Kentucky’s opener last week, a sign the veteran quarterback has taken a leap forward in his overall game. The junior quarterback threw for 246 yards, including a 40-yard strike to Ahamd Wagner and two touchdowns against Toledo, but more importantly showed poise and composure, especially in times of adversity. “I’m encouraged...

Kentucky coach Mark Stoops says Wildcats have plenty to build on with Eastern Michigan looming

By Keith Taylor Kentucky Today Mark Stoops didn’t expect a perfect game in Kentucky’s season-opening 38-24 win over Toledo but the Kentucky coach knows his team has plenty to build on moving forward. “Obviously in game one, you look around the country and there’s a lot of mistakes going on and a lot of things happen in week one, so it’s good to get that game under the...

Kentucky lineman Landon Young, now fully healthy, anxious for return to field in season opener

By Keith Taylor Kentucky Today Landon Young had no choice but to watch as Kentucky enjoyed its most successful season in more than four decades last season and it wasn’t easy for the Lafayette graduate. “That was the hardest part,” Young said. “You sit there and watch your guys in times of trouble in times of good and the worst part is, you can’t go on the field and help them. You have to...

Kentucky coach Mark Stoops has an extra spring in his step at Wildcats ready for Saturday’s opener

By Keith Taylor Kentucky Today Mark Stoops couldn’t hide his excitement going into Kentucky’s season opener set for Saturday against Toledo. “Waking up (Monday) morning, I had a little extra heartbeat,” Stoops said during his first weekly press conference Monday. “I’m excited. It’s game week and I’m really looking forward to it. ” That added boost comes a year after Stoops guided...

As fall football camp comes to a close, Wildcats’ defense competing with a new sense of urgency

By Keith Taylor Kentucky Today After a lackluster performance in the first scrimmage of fall camp, Kentucky’s defense took a step forward and has been in the upswing for the past two weeks. “As a whole (on) defense we’ve picked it up,” Kentucky defensive coordinator Brad White said Thursday. “We felt the urgency a little bit. We did some things in the second scrimmage that were better, we...

Stoops pleased with Wildcats’ performance in second scrimmage; defense, special teams make progress

By Keith Taylor Kentucky Today What a difference a week makes. Kentucky coach Mark Stoops liked what he saw in his team’s second scrimmage of fall camp Saturday, A week ago, Stoops wasn’t pleased with the team’s performance, especially on the defensive side of the ball, an area of expertise for Stoops, a former defensive coordinator. “It was a better second scrimmage,” Stoops said Saturday....

Coaches and players agree Kentucky’s defense failed to meet standard after first fall camp scrimmage

By Keith Taylor Kentucky Today Kentucky football coach Mark Stoops and defensive coordinator Brad White were on the same page following Kentucky’s first scrimmage of fall camp and both agree significant improvement must be made before the season opener in less than three weeks. “It was not a good performance by the defense,” White said Thursday. “No one is going to make any excuses about that....

Kash Daniel’s passion, drive an inspiration for his Kentucky Wildcats teammates, including offense

By Keith Taylor Kentucky Today Kash Daniel’s desire to succeed is well-documented and his passion for football has rubbed off on the rest of his teammates and his enthusiasm is comparable to Benny Snell. “He’s a lot like Benny, but on the defensive side,” Kentucky running back Chris Rodriguez said. “He’s a cool dude.” Like most players, Daniel listens to music as part of his pre-game...