LEXINGTON, Ky. — Kentucky is in the middle of preparing for Georgia and defensive players and coaches were available to talk after Wednesday evening’s practice.
Kickoff against the Bulldogs is set for 7:30 p.m. ET Saturday at Commonwealth Stadium, and the game will be broadcast on SEC Network. Here’s what you need to know from the latest round of interviews.
What we learned
- Sophomore defensive tackle Adrian Middleton was named SEC defensive lineman of the week after his performance last week against Missouri. Middleton is a big part in a young Kentucky defensive line that coach Jimmy Brumbaugh said is still growing: “We had to develop three new starters up front,” Brumbaugh said. “That takes reps. I think right now, with where they’re at, they had an ability to get in there and line up against SEC teams week in and week out.”
- Middleton said the position group pushes each other every day: “It’s like a competition between us,” Middleton said. “Just to make plays, and sacks and things like that.”
- Defensive coordinator D.J. Eliot said Kentucky played eight defensive linemen against Missouri — a season high for the Wildcats: “We had more confidence in some of our backups, to put them in the game, which we haven’t had earlier in this season,” Eliot said.
- Kentucky faced true freshman quarterbacks in South Carolina’s Brandon McIlwain and Alabama’s Jalen Hurts. The Wildcats are up against another this week in Georgia quarterback Jacob Eason: “He’s made a lot of plays scrambling,” Eliot said. “Somebody might’ve gotten pressure so he’s on the run now. He makes a good decision and finds the open guy. He’s really been dangerous when he gets out of the pocket and makes decisions.”
Watch: Adrian Middleton interview
Quote of the day
Middleton on learning he was named SEC defensive lineman of the week:
“Yeah, I was real surprised. I was taking a nap before practice and got a couple texts. It really was a surprise for me.”
Other news you need to know
- Kentucky AD Mitch Barnhart on Kentucky finally finding its football identity.
- More than 5,000 tickets are left for the Georgia game. Are some fans still in wait and see mode?
- A scenario could unfold where Kentucky fans have to choose between football and basketball on Dec. 3.
- Kentucky running back Jojo Kemp has a broken left hand and will only be used in an emergency situation.
- Five questions for Kentucky leading into the Georgia game.
- Stoops and Kentucky don’t want to talk about the Wildcats chances to win the SEC East.