Kentucky football: Paschal, Jones game saving plays for UK earn SEC honors

Kentucky's Joshua Paschal, right, and Tre'Vonn Rybka
Kentucky's Joshua Paschal, right, and Tre'Vonn Rybka /

Josh Paschal and Jacquez Jones received Southeastern Conference accolades for their performance in Kentucky football’s 20-13 win over Florida.

Both had spectacular plays that were instrumental in keeping the Gators out of the endzone and allowing the Wildcats to remain unbeaten on the year. The Cats are now ranked No. 16 in the AP poll this week and No. 14 in the Coaches Poll.

Paschal, a 6-foot-3 278-pound senior defensive end was named the SEC co-Special Teams Player of the Week after his blocked field goal turned the tide in Kentucky’s first top 10 victory since 2010.

Kentucky football’s Paschal named co-Special Teams player by SEC

With the Gators lined up to kick a 48-yard field goal Paschal was able to get his big hand on the ball and tipped it into the air falling in the hands of Trevin Wallace who snared it out of the air and raced 76-yards for Kentucky’s go-ahead score making it 13-7 as Kroger Field exploded with elation.

He also was named Reese’s Senior Bowl Defensive Player of the Week.

Paschal, is simply invaluable to the UK defense. He is the only three-time team captain in program history. Florida had 14 consecutive games of 400-plus yards of total offense, but Paschal and his defensive mates held the Gators to 160 less than thier season average.

He was responsible for seven tackles, including 2.5 for loss now has three careers blocked kicks and the most recent blocked field goal and punt (vs. Tennessee, 2019) for the Cats. For the season, he has 22 tackles, a team-high 6.5 tackles for loss, 1.5 sacks, and six quarterback hurries.

Mark Stoops talked about him during his Monday press conference.

"“It’s been a long time since I’ve seen anybody play as well as Josh Paschal did.”"

He finished with seven tackles, including 2.5 for loss

Jacquez Jones final pass break up named co-Defensive Player of the Week

Jones has been named Southeastern Conference co-Defensive Player of the Week thanks to his pass break up in the endzone on the Gators final desperation shot on fourth down with 22 seconds left in the game.

The 6-foot-0, a 235-pound inside linebacker from Tuscaloosa, Alabama, was all over the field finishing with nine tackles in the game, including one for loss, a quarterback hurry, and the game-saving pass breakup on Florida’s final play.

The Ole Miss transfer has been a tremendous addition this year and is now second on the team in tackles (33) and pass breakups (4). He has made three huge pass-defense plays this season.  In addition to last night’s pass breakup, he had an interception in UK’s 35-28 win over Missouri and a touchdown-saving breakup in the 28-23 win over Chattanooga.

Previously, Jones was named the Walter Camp FBS National Defensive Player of the Week. Jones is the second player since 2004 to earn Walter Camp National Player of the Week honors, joining former Wildcat defensive end/linebacker Josh Allen (Nov. 4, 2018).

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