After a hard fought game against South Carolina on Saturday there were a lot of positives that can be taken from the loss. The first Paw goes to quarterback Jalen Whitlow who seems to have locked himself in as the starter for the rest of the year after his performance on Saturday. Whitlow was efficient with the ball when passing going 17/24 for 178 yards and 2 scores as well on the run with 69 yards and a touchdown. He kept the Wildcats in the game and he showed true leadership and grit throughout the game.
Secondly we have to go straight to the play makers that were catching the ball from Whitlow. For the next Cats Paw I go to #1 Ryan Timmons who bailed Jalen Whitlow out of an overthrown fade pass to the corner of the end zone late in the fourth quarter with a spectacular catch. This award could have easily gone to any of the other receivers like Javess Blue who had 62 yards receiving including a 35 yard grab. Timmons has just been a consistent play maker every time the ball is in his hands and he showed it in Columbia.
Last but certainly not least I had to include my favorite player on this years team freshman running back Jojo Kemp. Sure people will look at this and say “why Kemp?” To that I will simply answer, sure he only had 40 yards rushing but for me it was the 10 yard rush on 4th and 3 on the South Carolina 25 in the second quarter that led to the Wildcats first touchdown of the game. That conversion completely changed the attitude on the Kentucky sideline and definitely made fans realize we might have a chance. Little plays like that catch my eye, those are what I like to call momentum shifters and Jojo Kemp is one of the guys along with Whitlow and Timmons who have the power to shift the momentum in Kentucky’s favor.
With all of that said, I was extremely excited about what I saw on Saturday night. Kentucky showed true grit and determination which is something I haven’t seen in years in a Kentucky team. This team is young and learning but they are sticking together and as a unit I think they will cause a lot of problems for the rest of the teams on the schedule. After Saturday I think Nick Saban will be looking a little further into preparation when they come to Lexington on Saturday as they might be in for a little more of a fight than they anticipated.