Kentucky-Western Kentucky: Wildcats Look to Oil the Offense

Nathan TowlesCorrespondent ISeptember 24, 2008

With the clash in the Commonwealth coming up on Saturday, the Wildcats had a good week of practice coming off an open week.

They had time to heal some of their wounds, adjust their receiving corps, and even to work on the kicking game, even if it doesn't get changed, which it should.

Here is the Western Kentucky offense depth chart.

  • WR: Derrius Brooks (5'10", 180, RFr.)
  • TE: Tristan Jones (6'3", 260, RFr.)
  • LT: Wenquel Graves (5'9", 185, So.)
  • LG: Cody Hughes (6'1", 300, Jr.)
  • C: Lloyd Pressley (6'3", 290, Jr.)
  • RG: Shelley Anthony (6'1", 280, Fr.)
  • RT: Preston King (6'4", 280, So.)
  • QB: K.J. Black (6'4", 215, So.)
  • WR: Quinterrence Cooper (6'0", 185, So.)
  • FB: Jared Johnson (6'0", 235, Sr.)
  • RB: Tyrell Hayden (5'10", 190, Jr.)

Western Kentucky defense depth chart

  • LE: Dan Cline (6'6", 265, Sr.)
  • NT: Terald Clark (5'11", 290, Sr.)
  • RE: Robert Dark (6'1", 270, Sr.)
  • OLB: Blake Boyd (6'2", 250, Jr.)
  • ILB: Alonzo Higgins (6'3", 240, Sr.)
  • ILB: Darvis McBride (5'10", 225, Jr.)
  • OLB: Ben Sowders (6'0", 225, Sr.)
  • CB: Marcus Minor (6'0", 200, Sr.)
  • SS: Ryan Beard (6'0", 175, RFr.)
  • FS: Travis Watters (5'10", 185, Sr.)
  • CB: Erik Jones (5'9", 175, So.)

Western Kentucky special teams:

  • PK: Zac Minturn (6'2", 190, Jr.)
  • P: Jeremy Moore (6'1", 190, Jr.)
  • LS: Josh Stinson (5'10", 200, Fr.)
  • KOR/PR: Quinterrence Cooper (6'0", 185, So.)

The Hilltoppers are a young Football Bowl Subdivision team. They are only in their second year out of the Football Championship Subdivision.

Here are some Hilltoppers to watch.

  • K.J. Black is expected to start at quarterback after dislocating his left shoulder in WKU's game on Sept. 6 against Eastern Kentucky. Black is a dual-threat that can pass and run.
  • Tyrell Hayden has not had a good year so far after having a career year last year. In the two games against BCS opponents he has only eight carries for 14 yards.
  • Derrius Brooks had only one catch with Black playing quarterback. Most of his catches have come with David Wolke under center. He has been very productive in the short passing game.
  • Blake Boyd has the most tackles for loss on the team, showing that he has fast speed to get into the backfield and stop the running back. Look for him to try to do the same at Commonwealth.
  • Robert Dark can get pressure on the opposing team's quarterback. With a young Kentucky offense, he could be in the backfield all day.

Look for the Cats to open up the offensive game plan and spread the ball around more. They need to get the running game going early and often. With the talented running backs that they have, they should be doing that with no problem.

With fewer receivers getting catches in practice, the Cats think that the problems with running wrong routes and dropped balls are over with. Look for Joker Phillips to open up and let Mike Hartline throw more on the WKU defense.

Let us all hope that the kicking game has been solved.

The defense should have no problem handling WKU's offense, even without star Micah Johnson. Don't look for number four to be on the field. He should be resting up and getting ready for next week's trip to Alabama.

If the Cats let loose and hold there own, look for it to be a blowout—and bad. My guess is that coach Rich Brooks has his team ready for this game.

Time to oil the machine known as the Kentucky offense. UK wins, 42-3.