On Monday Somerset quarterback Kaiya Sheron announced his commitment to the University of Kentucky. Kentucky’s fourth commitment in the 2021 class, Sheron spoke to Kentucky Sports Radio and explained why he wants to be a Wildcat and what the future holds for the 6-4 pocket-passer.
KSR: We’ll start with a simple question, one that’s been asked many times since Mark Stoops came to Lexington” Why Kentucky?
Sheron: Every time I was there it always felt like home. Me and Coach Hinshaw created a good relationship the first time I ever talked to him, from the camp I went to over the summer till now. We still talk almost everyday or anytime we can. It’s been great.
KSR: The coronavirus has shut down most of America, including football recruiting. Why did you decide to commit now instead of waiting to visit other schools down the road?
Sheron: Before everything got closed, during basketball season I told Coach Hinshaw I wanted to commit but after basketball, because I didn’t (wasn’t to) have any distractions for my basketball team. So after basketball I was planning on it and then a few days ago Coach Hinshaw called me — the night I committed — earlier that day and he told me that he was with all the coaches. So I talked to Coach Stoops and told him what I was planning on doing and told him that I wanted to commit. He was really excited. Coach Marrow, Coach Gran, all of them were there. It was pretty cool to talk to all of them.
KSR: UK was your first offer. What did that mean to you?
Sheron: I honestly didn’t expect it because it was the first time I’ve ever thrown in front of Coach Hinshaw and that camp he liked me, obviously. He called Coach Stoops over to watch me throw. Coach Stoops after the camp obviously wanted to talk to me. After I got that offer it felt like the world just lit up. It was awesome.
KSR: Last year we saw UK run the football almost exclusively. What does Darin Hinshaw foresee the offense looking like with you under center?
Sheron: He told me that they’ve thrown the ball. They were at Cincinnati before and he threw the ball all over the field. They adjust to their quarterbacks. He said whatever he thinks that I can do best — throwing the ball, having the ball in my hands, whatever I do best — they’re going to put me in a position, and the team in a position to win.
KSR: How would you describe your game for someone who has never seen you play?
Sheron: I’m a thrower first, but I can also run just to keep the defense honest. If I have the ball in my hands they have to respect my ability to run as well. I’m a passer but I also can move.
KSR: What was going through your mind when you took the field, trailing by one score, for the final drive of the 2A Start Championship Game against Mayfield?
Sheron: I was just trying to keep everybody else calm. I obviously was calm. I don’t really get too riled up honestly, and if I do, I keep it to myself so nobody will notice. I was just trying to keep everybody else calm because everybody was like, ‘This is it. This is it.’ You just gotta, ‘This is just another drive.’ They couldn’t stop us all game, honestly. We were up 11 at one point, then some turn of events, obviously happened. We had one drive and we killed it.
KSR: Can you break down the final play and what was going through your mind when you saw a dude wide open in the corner of the end zone?
Sheron: Whenever I threw it, if you watch the film you can see it from the wide-view. I don’t think any camera angle on the news has one of me. But right when it left my hand I pointed up in the air. I knew it was there. It was Tate’s to grab. It was awesome.
KSR: How did you celebrate? What was going through your mind then?
Sheron: I don’t even remember honestly. It was just crazy. It was surreal honestly. It was awesome.
— Brian Milam (@brianwkyt) March 24, 2020
KSR: What is a Briar Jumper and why is it the best mascot?
Sheron: Well, if you look up a briar jumper, it is a bunny. But the way we got our name in, I don’t even know, it was the early 1900s, like 190-something, 1906 or something like that. My social studies teacher, Mr. Beasley, in seventh grade told me this story. He said we went up to Louisville Male, or another Louisville school that we were supposed to get beat by a hundred. It was supposed to be a big spread. And Somerset went up there and surprisingly beat them. The news guys, the reporters were saying we were jumping around like briar jumpers, which is obviously bunnies. If you look up a mascot of a briar jumper, we are the only ones who have it in the entire country .
KSR: I love that most mascots are whatever the name the paper came up with that day.
Sheron: Exactly. That’s what he said. They were there jumping around like a bunch of briar jumpers so that’s what we are.
KSR: You all do have a nice field too. That thing is awesome.
Sheron: I know, brand new and it was the first year we ever played on it. We haven’t lost on that field actually.
KSR: You have some time off now. What are you watching on Netflix?
Sheron: I’m watching Gray’s Anatomy. I’m on season 12, episode 16. Honestly, it was just long. I was watching it before the corona. It’s long. I’ve already watched All-American. I take breaks in Gray’s Anatomy.
KSR: Now that you’ve sealed the deal, what’s next?
Sheron: Gotta focus on my high school team. I’ve got one more year with my boys and we’re looking to close it out like we did last year.
KSR: So no other visits, anything like that, you’re done?
KSR: Are you recruiting any other folks in the class of 2021 to join you?
Sheron: Me and Coach Hinshaw talked and he told me that he wanted me to be the Beau Allen and John Young of the class and try to go to most of the home games, see everybody, talk to everybody and be like another recruiter in-state, out of state, and show the kids what Kentucky is about.