Mandatory Credit: Mark Zerof-USA TODAY Sports

Kentucky Wildcats Football Preview: Meet Joe Mansour and AJ Johnson


JOE MANSOUR, K
SR 6’2, 188
LaGrange, GA

BEFORE UK

There was plenty of excitement when Mansour committed to UK as he was a  First-team All-America kicker among medium-sized high schools as selected by MaxPreps.com.    Mansour had six FG’s over 50 yards in his HS career and had touchbacks on 84% of his kickoffs.  His 59 yard FG his senior year was the third longest in Georgia HS history.   Joe was rated as the nations # 2 punter prospect by Scout.com and the No. 15 kicker as evaluated by Rivals.com.

AS A WILDCAT

Mansour has played in 30 games at UK, but so far his impact has been on the kickoff squad as he was unable to beat out Craig McIntosh for placekicking duties.  Mansour has made his impact known however as his booming kickoffs eliminate any returns.  He tied for the SEC lead in touchbacks as a freshman with 15, despite kicking in just nine games.  He had five touchbacks versus Akron.  He kicked in all 12 games in 2011 and had 14 touchbacks, including three versus Ole Miss.  Last season, he had 12 touchbacks and had a career best touchback percentage of 42.9%.

Mansour is expected to win the place kicking battle in camp this year and should be a reliable kicker.  He had a 38 yard FG in the Blue/White game in 2011 which was the winning margin.

 

AJ JOHNSON, WR
FR 6’2, 187
Portland, OR

BEFORE UK

Not much can be found on Johnson as his profile page at UKAA is blank, but he was rated as the 13th best player in Oregon, according to Maxpreps. Johnson appears to be still emerging as a player as he caught just 14 passes, but averaged 23.71 yards a catch.

AS A WILDCAT

If you are looking for a true darkhorse in the WR derby, look no further than Johnson. He has nice size and there is a bit of buzz about him that he could work his way into the rotation, and with a depleted WR corps, that would be welcome. It appears that he is something of a deep threat but expect to hear more on Johnson as the summer progresses.

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Tags: Football Kentucky Wildcats

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