Logan Stenberg is an old school, throwback football player that would fit in well during any era of the game. That’s a compliment by the way. Former UK tough guy fullback Andy Murray led the SEC in knockdown blocks during multiple seasons. He said of Stenberg, “That Cat would have fit in well with us.” Another compliment. On Tuesday I interviewed the junior offensive guard and his appearance matched that description. Typical to linemen during camp, Stenberg had a helmet cut on his forehead and his hands were bruised from hand-to-hand scuffles that often take place along the line-of-scrimmage. I’ve not been reluctant in praising the Madison, Alabama native, so I thought we’d get to know him a little better.
The following are excerpts from Tuesday’s question and answer session:
Q: What’s it like coming into spring as a veteran with 13 starts than trying to earn a starting position? Compare your mentality from this spring to last.
“Definitely think the mentality of this spring is to try to help the young guys to learn the offense and try to learn their role whatever that may be instead of focusing on myself trying to earn a starting spot.”
Q: You, Drake Jackson, and Bunchy Stallings were special at the end of 2017 season and project to be the strength of the offense. Is that continuing, how’s the communication?
“Last year I feel we were all like acquaintances. We’ve hung out, worked out all offseason. We’ve really just grown, become more close. I think we’ll be better than last year honestly.”
Q: Who’s the leader in the offensive line meeting room?
“I would say it’s me and Bunchy (Stallings).”
Q: What’s the main technique you’re working on in spring practice. Before you were painting with a broad brush. Now you’re fine tuning. What’s your number one technical priority?
“In the pass game it’s really keeping my head up and punching, making sure I’m using my hands and not my head cause I really like to use my head a lot which is not the smartest thing to do in pass pro. Run game it’s keeping my base, keeping my feet running, widen the holes, and getting more movement.”
Q: You’ve gone through a body change. What do you weigh right now and what do you want to weigh during the season?
“315 — I’ll be comfortable at 310 or 315 during the season.”
Q: After the bowl game you tweeted an apology after the loss, why did you feel that you needed to do that?
“I feel like I’m really hard on myself and if I don’t feel like I’ve played, you know like a 100% or if I’ve slacked in any area of the game it really weighs on me hard. I like to give it everything I have in every game in every snap. I apologized to the team, for the fans, the whole state of Kentucky, family back home, everybody.”
Q (From Larry Vaught): What’s it like blocking for Benny?
”I love him. I know that if I give him a little hole at all he’s going to hit it hard and he’s going to make me look good. And, I’ll make him look good sometimes if I widen that hole a little extra you know.”
Q: When the seasons starts teams will now game plan for you. Does that change your mentality?
”I’d like to say no but I have thought about it. It does drive me in the weight room to get stronger because everybody’s good in the Southeastern Conference. I got to have an edge. I got to be nasty. I got to be stronger, faster, something. I’m always working to improve my game so I can overcome those obstacles.”
Q (From Larry Vaught): Do you ever tend to be too aggressive?
“That’s kind of how I’ve been since middle school football. I’ve always been the guy that’s got personal fouls. I’m not the biggest, I’m not the strongest, I’m not the fastest, so I got to be the nastiest.
At 6-6, 315-pounds, Logan Stenberg is a prototypical offensive guard. Rated a 3-star by the recruiting services, Kentucky was his only Power 5 offer. He chose UK over Troy and Southern Miss. Stenberg started all 13 games in 2017 and was a key component to the Wildcat’s improved run game following center Drake Jackson’s emergence into the starting lineup. Stenberg-Jackson-Bunchy Stallings (Guard-Center-Guard) construct the strength of Kentucky’s offensive line. His freshman season was equally as impressive: 37 knockdown blocks and missed just one assignment for the entire 2016 season. He also registered 8 knockdown blocks as the Cats rolled up and impressive 443 rush yards against Tennessee.
What’s next for Logan Stenberg? As the team’s enforcer, he’ll certainly be a marked man in 2018. That doesn’t seem to bother him at all; matter of fact, I think he flourishes in that role. A year older and another offseason has changed his body into a junior that could be considered for all-conference honors. But, during our discussion it became obvious that Stenberg is more about the team’s success than his own. You often hear Mark Stoops say that, “It matters to him.” That’s Logan Stenberg. He gets it; whatever “it” is. The rising junior has played at a consistently high level for two seasons. I expect him to have a breakout junior year. “I’m not the biggest, I’m not the strongest, I’m not the fastest; so I go to be the nastiest.” Those words are exactly what any head coach would want to hear from a starting guard.