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With Mentors, Newton Progressing To New Heights (Hopefully)

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Newton could, like Woodson in 2006, have his breakout season this year

One of the most telling signs that a coaching staff is doing something right is when players who seemingly ‘just didn’t get it’ turn things around and become their team’s leader.  This season, Morgan Newton has a chance to show the (Big Blue) world that he finally gets it.  We’ve mentioned this before, but Andre Woodson and Tee Martin have taken Newton under their wing, and this could make a world of difference for the budding UK quarterback.

Woodson, who was expected to lose the QB-battle to Curtis Pulley his junior season, went from a mediocre player to one of the most successful quarterback’s in Wildcat history.  Martin was even more successful, with a national title under his belt at Puke Orange Junior College UT.  If anyone could show Morgan the light, it’s these guys.  Randy Sanders, the QB coach, wasn’t having much success last season in getting through to him.  Let’s check out some quotes from the coaches that really tells the story of Newton’s maturation:

Tee Martin:

“It went in one ear and out the other.”

He thought the job was going to be handed to him.”

“We talked for a long time. That was the first time we’d had a real serious-type conversation. Since then he’s been over to my house and we’ve been talking a lot more. He’s opened up.”

“I’m jealous of Morgan. What college quarterback can say that he has on his staff two former quarterbacks in the SEC that are young, recently played and have been coached by the same coach that’s coaching him? He is blessed.”

The influence of me and Andre’ being here has given him confirmation that ‘If these two jokers can do it, I know I can.’

Andre Woodson:

“Coming from his high school, he was obviously the best athlete out there. There was nobody to compete with. He’s done a wonderful job this summer of listening and catching on and trying to compete with himself. That’s a thing he used to not do.”

“He’s got to continue to work hard. If he does, I think he can definitely leave his mark here. He’s taken full advantage of the situation he’s in. We’re teaching him how to be the best quarterback he can be, trying to teach him to be the best quarterback in the conference.”

Randy Sanders:

“It’s not an accident that they’re here. When I get on him about something, Andre’ can say, ‘He used to get on me about the same thing.’ And he can see that once Andre’ got it, he had success. You can’t overstate the value of that.”

Morgan Newton:

“Truly a blessing.  I try not to take it for granted.” (re: Woodson and Martin)

“Sometimes you respond differently to guys who are closer to your age.”

I understand this is a lot of big talk for a kid who hasn’t even gotten a chance to prove that he’s really matured to the level we are hoping, but in order for this season to be as successful as possible, UK needs Morgan to be a star.  Believe in blue, right?  Here’s to hoping Morgan Newton has really turned that corner and reaches his potential.

Article written by Chris Thomas

18 Comments for With Mentors, Newton Progressing To New Heights (Hopefully)



  1. Charlie Strong
    4:13 pm August 18, 2011 Permalink

    first?



  2. Catsantonio
    4:24 pm August 18, 2011 Permalink

    Just saw where early line has Cats favored by 19 over WKU. Is it too early/optimistic to say lock of the year?



  3. Jim
    4:36 pm August 18, 2011 Permalink

    If the light doesn’t turn on for him now, it never will. I fully expect Newton to have a great season. But, the coaching staff has done everything for him except bring in a hypnotist.



  4. BravoBigBlue
    4:36 pm August 18, 2011 Permalink

    I hope Newton’s lost weight, is in shape, and can run less slowly.



  5. SweetTeaMob til I DIE
    4:51 pm August 18, 2011 Permalink

    4. You must be thinking of someone else.. Newton is in great shape and he was never slow. I mean he’s a quarterback, so it’s not his legs that we’re depending on anyways..



  6. SweetTeaMob til I DIE
    4:55 pm August 18, 2011 Permalink

    4. By the way, Newton has been clocked at a 4.5 in the 40yd dash.. pretty darn fast if you ask me. Especially for a QB.



  7. Kernel Sanders
    5:10 pm August 18, 2011 Permalink

    #5&#6– Newton was touted as the next Vince Young coming out of high school. I can’t speak for #4 that you respond to, but I too have been disappointed in Newton’s scrambling ability. He’s now listed at 6’4″ and 235. My frustration comes from watching him run standing straight up, and running with hesitation — with his size, that shouldn’t happen. Going into his 3rd year, I don’t recall him ever acting like he wants to run, or running with authority. So maybe to #4 above, that made Newton appear slow. Given what I typed above, I still think all he needs is the ability to pass accurately downfield. If he improves accuracy, he will be fine regardless of how he runs.



  8. Kernel Sanders
    5:16 pm August 18, 2011 Permalink

    #5&#6– Newton was touted as the next Vince Young coming out of high school. I can’t speak for #4, but I too have been disappointed in Newton’s scrambling ability. He’s now listed at 6’4″ and 235. My frustration comes not from his speed, but from watching him run standing straight up, and running with hesitation — with his size, that shouldn’t happen. Going into his 3rd year, he has rarely acted like he WANTS to run, or does he run with authority. So maybe to #4 above, that made Newton appear slow. Given what I typed above, I still think all he needs is the ability to pass accurately downfield. If he improves accuracy, he will be fine regardless of how he runs.



  9. Kernel Sanders
    5:18 pm August 18, 2011 Permalink

    oops, damn network connection. Sorry for the duplicate post!



  10. SagaciousMind
    5:27 pm August 18, 2011 Permalink

    4, Andre Woodson was the slow one, not Morgan Newton. I think Newton has more rushing TDs then he does passing. But he is now a junior and has had the experience of learning from some great qbs. I believe in Newton 100%. It’s our WRs that need to get on board. Hopefully Adams, McCaskill, Roark, King and some other guys really step it up.



  11. My Thoughts
    5:36 pm August 18, 2011 Permalink

    Well this season would have made me feel better if Moss was still the backup. Too bad Joker never let the kid have a chance to prove himself on the field or show the fans what he had in the bowl game. I figured him or Newton would transfer anyway so I hope Joker got it right.



  12. Kernel Sanders
    5:38 pm August 18, 2011 Permalink

    Newton in 2009-2010 (freshman yr.) had 2 rushing TD’s and averaged 16 rushing yards per game, and had 6 passing TD’s. In 2010-2011, he had zero rushing TD’s and averaged 10 yards per game rushing, and had zero passing TD’s as well. In 2 years, total of 2 rushing TD’s, 6 passing TD’s. Not knocking him, I believe Newton can flourish if he has matured. But again, I could care less if he can run. So point is, he is going to have to be a much more accurate and poised passer to lead UK to wins this year.



  13. Kernel Sanders
    5:40 pm August 18, 2011 Permalink

    #11 Are you forgetting Mossakowski’s chronic shoulder problems? That kept him off the field more than anything — it wasn’t so much a matter of coaches not giving him a chance.



  14. catnuts
    6:55 pm August 18, 2011 Permalink

    11) If the other quarterback was a competitor he would have never quit. Is that the kind of leadership you would hope for? As soon as some adversity hits you run away from it. I love the way all these fans think they know more than the coaches. Joker caught hell for playing Hartline and now they are bitching because of Newton, who would have been the one they wanted to replace Hartline with. I think it is safe to say, that Mike Hartline ended up being a pretty good QB. If Morgan Newton is to start at the University of Kentucky, then he deserves it. Joker is the one that conducts practices and he should know who gives us the best chance to win.



  15. AfterDinner Minter
    9:34 pm August 18, 2011 Permalink

    Why all the IU football advertisments on this site? Also why are they using Coach Minter’s pic as their head coach?



  16. My Thoughts
    2:59 am August 19, 2011 Permalink

    #14) Hartline did improve but the guy still couldn’t throw down-field and was a one dimensional qb and thats was a big reason we finished 6-6 with a ton of offensive fire power and the SEC being WAY DOWN in Florida, UGA, UT. Like I said I would have felt alot better if Moss would have stayed and nothing I said wasn’t true. Did you ever see Moss have have a chance to prove himself on the field? Did you see Moss get a chance to show the fans what he had in the bowl game when he deserved too? For you to say he got a fair shake in the bowl game is comical considering Joker kept saying they were neck and neck. Joker made a point in the bowl game that Newton was the man and Moss quit. I don’t blame the kid for jumping ship. If you feel you can play college football why would you sit around and ride the pine 4 year’s because the coach never let people see what you can do on the field. Like I said I figured one person would transfer when we recruited both of them and I hope Joker made the right decision. This year will tell us alot about his choice.



  17. Jim
    7:03 am August 19, 2011 Permalink

    Post #16 is a retard with the football knowledge of a gnat!



  18. UKfanNKY
    9:46 am August 19, 2011 Permalink

    RISE!!! This will be a special year! GO CATS!!!