On Saturday, there will be a plethora of talented seniors playing at Kroger Field for the last time. From the senior-loaded defense that has been nothing short of amazing all year, Baby Gronk and two talented offensive linemen: Bunchy Stallings and George Asafo-Adjei. While at times the offensive line may go unnoticed, you can’t understate what these two have done on the offensive line.
When Bunchy and Big George came to Kentucky, they came on a single belief; that they and their classmates could turn a bottom feeder, pedestrian 5-7 Kentucky team into a legitimate contender. Bunchy and Big George have been a crucial part of ushering in the new era of Kentucky football.
“I’m a big faith person,” said Asafo-Adjei. “God doesn’t help those who don’t help themselves, so we gotta help our selves get to that next level. We’ve been doing that, so the results have shown up.”
In their first year in Lexington, Kentucky started the season 4-1, only to drop six of their last seven games and miss a bowl game in 2015. Now the Big Blue Wall is an integral part of leading Benny Snell to three straight 1,000-yard seasons.
These two men have been at the forefront of the new Kentucky Football, so when I asked Bunchy if four years ago he thought the program could be elevated to what it is today, this is what he had to say:
“Honestly, I thought it would’ve come a lot faster. But at the same time, we knew it would take time. That’s why I chose Kentucky because I felt it. I believed in the chance that we could be good. We’ve tried to change the culture these last few years.”
Bunchy Stallings also took some time to reflect on the growth he and his teammates has as people here at UK.
“The many experiences I’ve got to take on while being here. I can’t ask for anything better. Going to Ethiopia, having that opportunity. Just being looked up to as a leader on the team, actually seeing myself progress over the years. Seeing my teammates, maybe ones with the same spitting image of my freshman or sophomore year, seeing them turn into a better man, a better person.”
Bunchy also said he hopes this class left a legacy of a team that has fight. He thinks the resiliency has played a big part in seeing his senior classmates mature over their time at Kentucky.
These two have played a part in some of Kentucky’s most significant victories in recent memory:
- Mississippi State in 2016
- Louisville in 2016
- Tennesse in 2017
- Mississippi State ion 2018
- NEVER losing to South Carolina
- Leading the way for Three consecutive 1,000-yard rushing season…
and of course, ending the 31-year-long drought to Florida, where Bunchy did this:
Bunchy Stallings with the enormous pancake block. (2018) pic.twitter.com/5cJ9adFZP1
— KY Clips (@KY_Clips) September 9, 2018
A big tip of the cap to these two for laying such a strong foundation for the Big Blue Wall.