Five SEC teams played spring games Saturday, and here are five things that stood out:
A packed house: Kentucky announced 50,831 people attended the Blue and White Game. That would have ranked second in attendance only to Alabama in the SEC in last year’s spring games. The Cats only drew 4,500 last spring. Do you think they’re excited in Lexington? Jalen Whitlow looked like the best QB Saturday, leading three scoring drives. He completed 17 of 28 for 193 yards and two touchdowns. He also notched 49 yards rushing, and he looks like the most dangerous weapon for the Cats of the three QBs. DEs Za’Darius Smith and Bud Dupree stood out for the defense.
Injuries everywhere: Ole Miss’ spring game was much like Florida’s – an open practice. Because of the rash amount of injuries for the Rebels, it’s been a tough spring of building upon last season’s success. The biggest injury was Bo Wallace’s shoulder surgery, and his backup Barry Brunetti didn’t take advantage of the opportunity to take the job from Wallace. Brunetti finished just 3 of 13 for 55 yards and an interception, while finished 7 of 11 for 46 yards. By the way the backup quarterbacks performed this spring, Bo Wallace is no doubt this team’s MVP.
Johnny Impressive: Johnny Manziel has been the biggest story of the offseason, and he was the biggest story Saturday during the spring game. He completed 24 of 29 passes for 306 yards and three touchdowns. Manziel was so raw in 2012, and he could take his game to another level as a passer. Does that scare anyone?
Why so serious? Steve Spurrier doesn’t take spring games seriously. “Spring practice is important for the younger guys. I guess one reason I don’t get all fired up for spring practice is I only went through one of them in my three years of them at Florida. I got hurt the other two — nothing serious.” Jadeveon Clowney caught a touchdown pass…in sneakers and a t-shirt. Spurrier still has questions about the offensive line exiting Saturday’s spring game. Mike Davis carried twice for 40 yards, including a 25-yard touchdown run, and Jerell Adams caught five passes for 112 yards with two touchdowns.
Eking one out: The projected Vanderbilt backups nearly beat the projected starters. The Gold team rallied behind freshman QB Johnathan McCrary. McCrary completed a 49-yard touchdown to take a 15-14 lead in the closing minutes. However, the first-team offense really struggled Saturday. There were a total of 12 sacks and 19 tackles for loss, with Vince Taylor notching 2.5 tackles for loss and one sack. James Franklin was honored “Tennessean of the Year” at halftime for the Dores’ nine-win effort last season.
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