Kentucky thoroughly whipped Tennessee’s ass so badly, the Wildcats used most of the fourth quarter as training ground for the underclassmen.
Many future stars saw their first significant snaps at Neyland Stadium. Bowling Green High School product Vito Tisdale had stepped foot on the field previously. Saturday afternoon we saw him lower his shoulder and knock the tar out of multiple Volunteers as a member of Kentucky’s kickoff team. No. 7 finished the day with three solo tackles.
True freshman JuTahn McClain got his first carry a week ago against Mississippi State. This week they asked the running back to do more than clean up during garbage time. Leading 24-7 in the third quarter, a long Kentucky scoring drive would drive the dagger through Tennessee’s heart. McClain entered the game and picked up 11 yards, including a crucial third and two conversion, to set up a UK field goal. He finished the day with 23 yards on seven carries.
Like McClain a week ago, Josaih Hayes had some previous experience against Miss. State, but this week they needed a lot more from the true freshman nose guard. The Lake Horn, Ms. product recorded his first career tackle filling in for the injured Quinton Bohanna. True freshman defensive back Joel Williams also recorded his first tackle on Saturday.
Joey Gatewood‘s first Kentucky completion was the first reception for highly-touted athlete Michael Drennen. The true freshman from Dublin, Oh. also saw some snaps from the slot early in the game.
Finally, arguably the most impressive play of the day from a freshman was made by Carrington Valentine. The true freshman cornerback from Cincinnati stirred up quite a ruckus in preseason practice. Receiving his first reps he broke up a deep pass in the fourth quarter that is uncharacteristic of a true freshman. Valentine’s future is bright.
While enjoying the spoils of war, the newcomers took to social media to share their jubilation. Today provided affirmation that they made the right choice.
— Mike Drennen II ? (@UhhMyNameDonut) October 17, 2020
EVERY TIME ? https://t.co/jfa9KXhciD
— V7?? (@vitotisdale7) October 17, 2020
— octavi8us (@octaviousoxend1) October 17, 2020