VAUGHT: Sanders evaluates quarterbacks

If he had his way, Randy Sanders would like to have a clear idea about who is Kentucky's No. 1 quarterback when spring practice ends April 22.

If he had his way, Randy Sanders would like to have a clear idea about who is Kentucky's No. 1 quarterback when spring practice ends April 22. However, the new UK quarterback coach says it is not a "must" to have a clear No. 1 going into summer workouts.

"It doesn't bother me if we don't have a solid No. 1. A lot of times who you pick at quarterback to be your starter depends on the other 10 guys you have around him," said Sanders, who came to UK from Tennessee. "It is hard to know how good we will be in the other 10 spots until we have everybody out here. When we get Keenan Burton, Jacob Tamme and Rafael Little back and then some of the signees we have coming in, we can figure out our 10 best and which ones best suit the style and strengths of our quarterback."

Don't get Sanders wrong. He would love to see Andre Woodson or Curtis Pulley play so well the next week that one clearly shows he should be the No. 1 .

"I think it is a huge opportunity for one of them to make a jump and kind of separate themselves," Sanders said. "They don't separate themselves by going out and making spectacular plays. They separate themselves by running the offense and making first downs. It is not who makes the 70-yard touchdown run or pass, but who makes first downs and who responds when the play breaks down. A quarterback has got to make plays and be very consistent and not have negative plays that get you beat."

But doesn't Kentucky need to settle on a quarterback to set its offense for next season? Obviously, Woodson is a dropback passer and limited runner. Pulley is a great runner and limited passer. Can they really run the same offense?

"I think they can run the same offense, but obviously you try to gear things toward your strengths. Usually it is not as hard on them (the quarterbacks) as it is hard on the other guys," Sanders said. "Offensive linemen have to learn two different ways of doing things. So do receivers and running backs. Those guys end up learning two different offenses where the quarterback has it easier just learning what he does. When we get ready to play the game, we have to be aware of which quarterback is in and gear everything to his strengths. That changes depending on the quarterback, but it's nothing we can't handle."


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