Boyd, offense come on late in UK scrimmage

April 11, 2004|JILL ERWIN

LEXINGTON - It was his first scrimmage as Kentucky's No. 1 quarterback, but even a slow start didn't dampen Shane Boyd's resolve to start next season under center.

The Wildcats' offense eventually woke up, leading to two big plays by the No. 1 offense, and Boyd outplayed redshirt freshman Andre Woodson in Kentucky's intrasquad scrimmage Saturday at Commonwealth Stadium.

Boyd connected on 8 of 14 passes for 140 yards and a touchdown, but the first-team offense totaled just six first downs, none on its first three series.

"We just have to learn how to get the offense going early and then we'll see what we can do," Boyd said.


The UK offense scored just two touchdowns during its regular scrimmage, starting at the 35-yard line. Both came on 65-yard plays, one an end-around to Keenan Burton and one a pass to Glenn Holt from Boyd on the next play.

"I expect big plays," Boyd said. "We need to get the ball in people's hands who can make plays. There's a lot expected out of this offense. We made some mistakes we need to get corrected. We just have to continue to work."

Quarterbacks missed some easy passes

It wasn't the big plays that were tripping up the quarterbacks, to hear coach Rich Brooks tell it. To Brooks, it was that the Cats weren't connecting on the easier ones.

"We were throwing the ball behind the receivers, throwing it low, throwing it high," Brooks said. "We need to be able to complete the easy passes.

"They were both, I think, anxious and had a little bit of an adrenaline rush. They both were throwing the ball much better in regular practice. The old heart rate goes up a little bit, they're not as patient, they're not as technique-oriented and what we need to do is get past that."

Woodson didn't look as strong in his debut, completing 3 of 10 passes for 42 yards and an interception. The second-team offense picked up four first downs under his direction, but offensive coordinator Ron Hudson said Woodson has a long way to go before he's ready to take over at quarterback for UK.

"He's just a little bit emotional and can't deal with negativism right now," Hudson said. "When things are going poorly, he kind of gets in the tank. You have to continue to push him, keep the pressure on him so he responds.

"There aren't many people in the stands today. Saturday afternoons, he'll be out there by himself in front of all those people, and how's he going to respond? He's got to respond. That's what you coach for. He made a lot of mistakes out there, but he's a young freshman we're going to continue to work with."

Both Hudson and Brooks observed that Boyd's accuracy left much to be desired. The senior missed several open receivers in his time on the field.

However, his pass to Holt was right on the money and led to the second score.

Boyd knows he has work to do

Boyd knows he still has work to do, and he never shies away from that.

"It's something I have to work on," Boyd said. "That's with every quarterback. If I had great accuracy, or considered to have great accuracy, I'd still work on that. Quarterbacks need to work on that every day."

Brooks announced before spring practice that Boyd would be the No. 1 quarterback, but also said Woodson would have an opportunity to compete for the job.

Boyd not only outplayed Woodson from a passing aspect, but he also rushed six times for 25 yards, including a 10-yard sack by Dustin Williams. Woodson rushed eight times for minus-6 yards and was sacked twice.

"He's always going to be able to make plays with his feet," Brooks said. "That's one real advantage he'll bring to that position. He can break down the defense with his scrambling ability."

Boyle County's Taylor Begley hit 3 of 4 field goals, including a 41-yarder, for the Cats. Clint Ruth was 2-for-3 on field goals.

Danville product Andrew Hopewell had one carry for 36 yards.

Central Kentucky News Articles