Concentration helped Walker make acrobatic catch against Ole Miss


Kentucky wide receiver Charles Walker returns a punt a long distance during the game against the Florida Gators on Saturday, September 23, 2017 in Lexington, Ky. Kentucky was defeated 28-27. Photo by Carter Gossett | Staff

Many big plays will be forgotten from UK’s loss to Ole Miss, including a third down catch from Charles Walker that kept UK’s chances of winning in the first place alive.

On UK’s final drive, which resulted in a Benny Snell touchdown that gave the Cats the lead with just over two minutes remaining, UK was faced with a 3rd and 3 in their own territory. Stephen Johnson went to his go-to guy, Charles Walker, who ended up making the grab despite a bad throw from Johnson.

“It was great concentration cause I threw it way to high,” Johnson said after Tuesday’s practice. “I was kind of on my back foot throwing it side arm almost and he just went up and snagged it real quick.”

Walker had to reach way up in the air to even make contact with the ball, and he ended up bobbling it on his way down to the ground. Walker ended up hanging on to the ball, keeping UK’s then game winning drive alive. 

Even though Johnson admitted the throw was a little high, Walker didn’t think Johnson’s pass was that bad.

“Stephen threw a good ball, he actually sat in the pocket and looked like he was about to take one of the biggest hits I’ve ever seen,” Walker said. “It was a little high but I jumped a little early.”

Regardless of the errors on both sides, Walker says a big reason why he was able to make that catch was because of his concentration.

Walker knows a perfect ball won’t be thrown his way every time, so focusing on doing what he can do helps him make difficult catches.

“Not every catch is going to be perfect, a little bobble and just kind of keep your eye on it,” Walker said.

Cats “take advantage” of weather

All day Tuesday across Lexington consisted of breezy cold temperatures and periods of rain on and off throughout the day. 

However, that didn’t stop the Cats from using nature’s elements to their advantage.

“It was good, we had the first part of practice inside, then went out and got a little bit of sprinkles,” offensive coordinator Eddie Gran said after Tuesday’s practice. “We didn’t catch it as well as we needed to today but it was good we got out there with the weather like it was.”

Despite the offense not performing as well as Gran would have hoped, he said he was glad they got the opportunity to practice in these circumstances since end of the season football weather can be unpredictable.

“I think it’ll help us in the future hopefully,” Gran said.