As start of Kentucky football season approaches, top quarterback has yet to be chosen


Terry Wilson (LEFT) and Gunnar Hoak

A quarterback battle has the heads of Kentucky fans spinning – and as we get closer to week one on the schedule, there’s more and more buzz about who will take the top quarterback spot.

Sophomores Terry Wilson and Gunnar Hoak are the leading men in the battle, and both have shown solid impressions on their coaches during camp.

Kentucky head coach Mark Stoops and offensive coordinator Eddie Gran have challenged the quarterbacks in camp and pre-season to throw down the field more, and Wilson and Hoak have improved in that area. Gran said that as the quarterback decision gets closer, he’d like to see better decision-making out of both front-runners and is paying close attention to the guys in those practice situations, like two-minute drills.

“Running the offense with urgency, quarterbacks competing…. leading the team,” Gran said of what he expects to see out of the two.

As spectators get to know the quarterbacks better, there’s been talk about how Hoak is more of a passer and Wilson is more of a runner. But they disagree, and so does Gran.

“The biggest mistake is calling Terry Wilson just a runner and Gunnar Hoak just a passer,” Gran said.

He said Wilson is a better runner, but both can throw the ball.

“I think guys know I can throw the ball around. It just comes along with the game,” Wilson said.

Hoak thinks his strengths on the field include “staying in the pocket, keeping his eyes down the field, and getting the ball to the playmakers.”

In Kentucky’s spring game in April, Hoak went 14-of-25 for a total 121 yards.

Although both guys have the starting quarterback pressure hanging over them, Stoops said the quarterbacks’ poise, confidence, and decision-making are what’s pleased him the most during the pre-season.

Whoever takes the leading role will have big shoes to fill, as Kentucky lost its starting quarterback Stephen Johnson.

Hoak said Johnson taught him “how to be a leader for the team, just like he was.”

Kentucky takes the field on Sept. 1, when the Cats face Central Michigan.