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Terry Wilson finally showcased skills that made him starting quarterback

Terry Wilson (Vicky Graff Photo)

By LARRY VAUGHT

If you have been wondering why Terry Wilson was named Kentucky’s starting quarterback, you finally got a chance to understand in the 27-16 win at Florida Saturday night.

Wilson ran for 107 yards and one score — a brilliant 24-yard burst that showcased all his speed — and complete 11 of 16 passes for 151 yards, including a 54-yard scoring bomb to Lynn Bowden in the third quarter and a 29-yard strike to David Bouvier to open the scoring.

Kentucky coach Mark Stoops said those were the kind of “explosive” plays they felt Wilson could make.

“He still has a lot of football ahead of him. He’s going to get better every opportunity,” Stoops said after the win. “He was dynamic today when he pulled the ball down and ran.

“He missed that throw at the end of the half. We felt we had that play set up and he missed that throw. We told him at halftime to go back out there and let it rip and let’s go play the second half. And he made some big plays.”

Wilson’s perceived edge over Gunnar Hoak at quarterback was his ability to make yards with his speed and running ability on broken plays like he did against Florida.

“Those are critical, to have a quarterback that’s very dynamic like that. Your structure of your defense puts a lot of pressure on you,” Stoops said.

“You’ve heard me talk about it when we play dual-threat guys. The fact that he can do that, as we progress and start throwing the ball more, it’ll put more and more pressure on the defense.”

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  1. Wilson did prove a lot Saturday night. He is a very good athlete. Very capable running threat. The TD passes were on the money except the one INT. I hope Gunnar gets his chance before this season is done. Especially if UK gets a big lead against an opponent.

  2. Wilson threw some absolutely beautiful passes in the game including the long touchdown. I checked – he threw it 55 yards in the air and it caught Lynn Bowden in perfect stride right in the bread basket. It doesn’t get done any better than that anywhere. The receiver had two stops on the defender because that defender clearly thought he was out of range. He stopped and let him go only to see the ball hit Bowden perfectly.

    Wilson is an incredible threat to run the ball. He has speed to burn. Combine that with the hard running of Snell and things open up like that counter play where Wilson ran 24 yards for the TD.

    Obviously he needs to keep control the ball better and he did miss on a couple of passes. But this was his first SEC game. The learning curve is steep to play in that conference.

    I woke up to find that the Cats had votes in both the AP and coach’s poll. I haven’t seen that for a while.

    Then I read, on ESPN. how Florida looked really bad in their game against the Cats. It wasn’t “UK looks really good in win in the Swamp”. It was “Florida looks so bad they lost to UK”. I really don’t like ESPN. That’s probably due to the fact they don’t like UK at all. They mentioned how UK went in to a game with Couch as QB expecting to have a chance to win only to lose by 65-0. Gee I wonder why they didn’t mention last season or the one where UK totally got hosed by the refs and lost a couple of years ago? No way. Not for UK.

    I really don’t like ESPN. I know I said that once. I can’t say it often enough.

  3. Great win anytime you beat Florida in any sport!
    Wilson did look better, but needs to hang on to the ball. Stephen Johnson started out with that problem, but got better. Hope Wilson can also.
    I am not sure if Hoak is a better passer, but if he is, I would like to see Wilson play more like Cobb did. Wilson will never make it in the pros as a QB, but with his speed, he has a real shot as a receiver. The pros could even use him for just returning punts and kickoffs, but I don’t think his bread and butter is at qb.
    Having Snell, Rose, Conrad, Bowden, Bouvier, and Wilson to utilize would give an accurate passer some gaudy numbers. Not sure how you could stop a group like that.

  4. Before we try to pigeon hole the young man, let’s first give him a chance . He still has two years after this one and this was his 1st SEC game. Not sure we’ve seen a better performance from the QB spot in their 1st game against Fla. Or any SEC opponent. This kid has all the natural ability in the world and a cannon for an arm. The things he does well you can’t teach, the things he does not you can. With the right coaching he could mature into an NFL quarterback. We have several guys on this team to catch the ball and have real speed. No need to rush this young man out of the QB spot. Let’s give him time to improve his passing. Not to mention that a whole bunch of UK qb’s with better passing percentages couldn’t beat Fla. Heck people said we couldn’t win in the Swamp running the ball. But we did. He can be an NFL QB if he works hard enough just like UK did Saturday night. GO CATS

  5. When Tim Couch was quarterback in a game at Florida, he was knocked out on a play and the Gator Fans all stood and cheered and roared with glee.
    A few years later, Tim Tebow was knocked out on a play at Kentucky’s home game, and the stadium was quiet until Tim Tebow recovered and stood up and got an applause from the Kentucky fans.
    So when I saw the faces of the Florida fans after Kentucky beat them on their own field even though they were RANKED gave me a sense of satisfaction. The Big Blue Fans are the most knowledgeable and good sports.
    Thanks Big Blue Fans from #31 on the Thin Thirty

  6. Wilson was 11-16 in passing with two TD’s and a single interception. Those are pretty impressive numbers for the first time in the SEC. And he absolutely launched the one pass. Again it went 55 yards in the air. That’s not easy to do in the middle of a play. He has plenty of talent to be a NFL QB.

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