VAUGHT: Pulley has high expectations for himself

When Curtis Pulley hears people talk about him becoming Kentucky's backup quarterback the day practice starts, he admits he's flattered. But the freshman quarterback has not been fooled into thinking he's guaranteed a spot or that college football is going to be easy.

"I am glad people are thinking that I am that good and have that kind of confidence in me," said Pulley. "But I also know I have a whole lot of work to do. Hopefully, I can earn that backup spot, or maybe even some more playing time. But I know it is going to take a lot of hard work.

"I have high expectations for myself, just like a lot of other people do. However, I know I have to play within myself. I have to play smart. I am not going to force anything just to try and please somebody else. That wouldn't be very smart at all. I just have to play my game and if I do, then I am pretty confident I can do well."

He should feel that way. He is Kentucky's Mr. Football and had his choice of big-time scholarship offers. Kentucky obviously needs a backup to Andre Woodson and Pulley seems to be the most likely candidate because of his athleticism, speed and leadership.

He played well in the Kentucky-Tennessee All-Star Game and should have shown critics then that he throws the ball better than some believe.

"I tried to play as hard as I could to help us win. I wasn't really trying to show what I could do. I made a couple of mistakes, but I hope by August I will have all of those out of my system," he said.

Pulley is in summer school now working on getting adjusted to academic life. However, he says the all-star game gave him an early preview of what college football will be like.

"The game was fun, but the intensity was so high that it let me know what to expect in college," Pulley said. "It was the first time I had been around that many good athletes. I found out my footwork in the pocket has to get better. I couldn't get away from a couple of rushes that I always could in high school. That told me right there that I had a lot more to learn than I even realized."

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