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Kentucky Wildcat Football 2012 Position Preview: Tight End

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Tyler Robinson scores against his hometown Vols.

Returning Players: Ronnie Shields (So) Tyler Robinson (Jr) Jordan Aumiller (Jr) Anthony Kendrick (JR) Patrick Ligon (Jr) Gabe Correll (Sr)

Newcomers: None

Projected starters:  Shields, Robinson

2012 Outlook: More involved in offense as blockers and recievers

Starters:  When the Kentucky offense trotted out during fan day it featured two tight ends, Sheilds and Robinson. Which answered nothing for fans wondering which player might start, as the two have vastly different skill sets. It is unlikely that UK will use dual tight ends as a base offense but it could be common. Shields would be helpful as a receiving threat and Robinson could stay in and help the tackles block. If only one starts, Robinson is the more complete player and as an upper-classman, likely to start.

Tyler Robinson: Robinson is a devastating blocker at the point of attack and a battering ram with the ball in his hands. He actually possesses a good pair of hands, rarely dropping the ball, but his blocking ability has kept him on the line of scrimmage more often than not. Not slow, but certainly not a speedster, Robinson can gain separation from linebackers and move the chains.

Ronnie Shields:  Shields came to Lexington as a raw “Joker” tight end who could stretch the field but left something to be desired as a blocker. He redshirted and has spent two years working on his blocking technique. He coaches seem to feel he has made strides in this area as they are trusting him more. He played with the 1’s quite a bit in the spring and made several nice plays downfield in the Blue/White game.

Jordan Aumiller:  Aumiller signed with UK as a linebacker but moved to tight end and became a freshman All-SEC as redshirt frosh. Blocking has never been his strong suit and he started losing reps to Robinson and Nick Melillo. It seemed to affect his confidence, because he was not an asset in the passing game last year either. Aumiller still has the potential to impact games this fall.

Anthony Kendrick:  Kendrick probably had the most potential of any tight end on the roster when he came in and still does. He simply hasn’t seemed to put it together consistently, showing brief flashes here and there in games. If the light comes on, Kendrick could be a dangerous weapon for the Wildcats this year.

Gabe Correll: Correll is a career walk-on who has one catch as a Wildcat. He won’t see many, if any, offensive snaps this season but has been a standout on special teams for the past three years.

Patrick Ligon: Ligon came to Kentucky as a defensive end, converted to defensive tackle and was rumored to be moving to the offensive line. This year he showed up on the roster as a tight end. He didn’t appear to see any snaps on offensive in the Spring game but his bulk could be useful in goal-line packages and special teams.