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Defense Wins Championships… and Spring Games

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Don’t be fooled, this is his Clark Kent outfit

 

I’ve preached and preached for the past couple weeks about the Kentucky Spring game, and now that it has come and passed, I feel as though #BBN has a better understanding of where their football program stands.  The stadium was more full for an inter-squad scrimmage this spring than it was for a couple HOME GAMES last season, and everything (well, almost) had the feeling of an actual season game.  The Spring game was an opportunity to have some questions about the Football Cats answered, and while most everyone else was looking at the QB competition, I couldn’t help but notice that the Defensive unit looked pretty solid at just about every position and was anchored by the big guys up front.

 

First and foremost, ZA’DARIUS SMITH IS A MAN AMONG BOYS.  I constantly found myself muttering something about how “this guy can’t be blocked,” and more times than not, he wasn’t.  You can tell that “Z” has that MKG motor, and he made it a habit on Saturday to live in the backfield.  I could sit here and spit out stats from the scrimmage yesterday, but those numbers wouldn’t do #94 justice.  He did everything well: read screens, took good pursuit angles, consistently beat his man off the ball, and his hand placement made it nearly impossible to get a solid block on him.  The media guide has him listed at 6’6″ and around 260 pounds, but I think that’s hiding the real figures a little bit.  The man is a monster.

 

Z is the anchor of the defensive line, and the fact that he has to be accounted for EVERY play will free up the guys on the inside from double teams.  If an offensive guard has to bump out and help the tackle on his match-up with Z, then guys like Tristan Johnson (LaGrange, Georgia everybody) will be able to camp out in the backfield.  The guys up front play off of each other, and an advantage in the trenches serves the team as whole well.  “Our communication is our biggest strength.  If I look at one of the other guys and tell them I’m in a six technique, they know how to adjust,” Smith said after the game.  “We still need to work on our hand placement, but we just get in there and work hard everyday.”  THE GUY ISN’T ONLY TALENTED, BUT HE KNOWS THE GAME AS WELL.  DANGEROUS….

 

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It’s only the spring game, true.  But really look for #94 to make a huge impact this season on the defensive front.  The man himself said that there is a lot of potential on the defensive unit because there is “speed everywhere.”   Size hurts, but speed kills.

 

Great job #BBN for making the spring game a success.  Both the players and coaches all felt the love at the stadium and the recruits in attendance all walked away impressed.  There’s a lot to be positive about moving forward, but as everyone knows the SEC is no cakewalk.

 

 

 

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@WEJarboe_KSR

 

Article written by Erik Jarboe

14 Comments for Defense Wins Championships… and Spring Games



  1. L1C4
    12:59 pm April 14, 2013 Permalink

    It was great to see Kentucky finally get a win in the SEC last night.



  2. bluetooth
    1:01 pm April 14, 2013 Permalink

    sounds like we got a anchor on the defense . now everybody else play up to this level and our defense will start taking shape . go cats



  3. bluetooth
    1:02 pm April 14, 2013 Permalink

    1 , have you ever been snipe hunting ?



  4. Jon Lock
    1:03 pm April 14, 2013 Permalink

    Spring Game Highlights from Kentucky Wildcats TV:

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ewlTF7ZiXsA



  5. stubeycat
    1:22 pm April 14, 2013 Permalink

    L1C4 You are a a**hole!!! It is fans like you that give everyone else a bad name. Go away until you can play nice.



  6. DLN
    1:28 pm April 14, 2013 Permalink

    #1 It’s great to see a Louisville fan trolling a UK board. Little Brother Syndrome is a disease that just doesn’t go away. It’s like herpes, and as a Louisville fan, I’m sure you know all about that. (The ointment is in aisle 5. Every time.)

    What would be really awesome is to see a Louisville fan on their own board. That’s something that seemingly never happens.



  7. WKU
    1:34 pm April 14, 2013 Permalink

    The ONLY $EC win for the Kayuts in 2013!!! Beat a Sun Belt team before running your tail pipe smokers!!!



  8. Section 133
    1:35 pm April 14, 2013 Permalink

    1. So how did the Line Beard/Flat Bill game go yesterday? Did Crown Royal win the tailgate? Any hairbrushes stolen?



  9. Teddy
    1:41 pm April 14, 2013 Permalink

    #8 I practiced taking a knee in the 3rd quarter in preperation for the 2-10 MildKitty game.



  10. Knows better
    1:48 pm April 14, 2013 Permalink

    Remember, everybody on Alabama’s team plays like this !



  11. Gandalf the Blue
    1:55 pm April 14, 2013 Permalink

    Can someone please explain the “$EC” thing these trolls from little sister conferences always use? Does it imply that Kentucky is paying its unheralded recruits to come be on a 2-10 team? Like what is the implied insult? I am genuinely interested to know if someone can explain.



  12. Josh
    2:14 pm April 14, 2013 Permalink

    11 – It’s just a pitiful attempt at trolling by someone with an inferiority complex. I mean, Louisville won a national championship in basketball, won the Sugar Bowl, and instead of letting their success do the talking, some Card fans have nothing better to do than act like a baboon and come on KSR and throw shit.

    And putting a dollar sign in SEC is just grabbing low-hanging fruit. A weak insult from someone who is not clever enough to come up with something else.



  13. Thank you
    2:44 pm April 14, 2013 Permalink

    #12 Preach!!



  14. El Guapo
    5:33 pm April 14, 2013 Permalink

    It’s good to see one of our D-lineman not get blocked. But then again, we couldn’t block anyone’s D-linemen last season, so you can’t read much into that yet.

    The “$EC” remark, I believe, is a jab at how the SEC rings up more money by far than any other conference, largely on the basis of its football quality, and how it spreads that money to even teams like Kentucky, which (sad but true) contribute back little to nothing financially due to lack of athletic success (athletic = football; basketball generates only a tiny fraction of the money football does). Basically, they’re claiming we’re a financial parasite on our conference and remain in it only to suck money off the other schools who have actually fielded football programs the last few years – and there’s some validity to that. By retaining the Joke as head coach for so long, you basically forfeit the season ahead of time. Now, though, it appears we at least are making an effort to play football.