VAUGHT: Parsons and defense excited about UL test

Kentucky defensive end B. Jay Parsons knows the Louisville offense will test Kentucky's defense Sunday. But he also has a slightly different perspective on what will be happening.

Kentucky defensive end B. Jay Parsons knows the Louisville offense will test Kentucky's defense Sunday. But he also has a slightly different perspective on what will be happening.

"I think our defense might also test the Louisville offense. All the attention has been on us stopping Louisville," said Parsons. "But this game also gives Louisville the chance to show it can put up the same kind of big numbers it has been. If they come out and put up those kind of numbers, it won't be good for us. But they still have to show they can do that. They have new players, too.

"I'm not saying it is not going to be a big test for our defense. They have a lot of key guys returning and we know their offense is not going to change. But we're excited by this test. We think we can cause problems for them, too."

That enthusiasm is what Kentucky's defense needs. The Cats are going to be relying on players like Parsons, a junior college transfer last year who had trouble getting on the field regularly, to overcome a lack of experience with enthusiasm and execution.

"I spent a lot of time watching last year. This year I want to step in and show that I can do the job they are asking me to do," Parsons said. "Not getting to play a lot last year really motivated me in the offseason to do the things it took to get on the field this year."

So why does he truly believe the Cats' defense can stop Louisville?

"As much work as we have put in since last year, we don't believe that anyone is going to run over us," Parsons said. "It happened to us last year, but we didn't accept that it had to keep happening. We don't anticipate that being a problem this year. We want to hold our ground and be looked at as a dominant defense."

Perhaps that's why Parsons knows he has to be more than just a pass rusher for Mike Archer's defense to work.

"I love to rush the passer, but being able to stop the run has been our focus from the spring until now," Parsons said. "I don't want to be see predominately as only a pass rusher. I want to stop the run as well because if we don't stop the run, we probably are not going to be the kind of defense we want to be."

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