VAUGHT: Duncan likes Vanderbilt's Johnson

Kentucky senior offensive lineman Zipp Duncan knows exactly what Southeastern Conference coach he would want to play for if he was not playing for Rich Brooks. It's not Florida's Urban Meyer, LSU's Les Miles or South Carolina's Steve Spurrier, either. Instead, it is Vanderbilt coach Bobby Johnson.

"I had a chance to meet him when I was being recruited. He's like coach Brooks. He's old school, hard-nosed. He might not get the best athletes but he will make do with what he can. I kind of respect that in the man. I like to see the underdog do well," Duncan said Wednesday during the SEC Media Days.

Duncan, an Elizabethtown, Ky. native, had Vanderbilt as one of his finalists when he was choosing a school because Nashville is close, he liked the city and Johnson was there. He chose the chance Brooks offered to help rebuild UK's program, but he still likes to see Vanderbilt do well if the Commodores are not playing UK.

I know what it feels like to be one of those teams sitting home when everybody else has gone to a bowl, so I was proud of waht Vanderbilt did last year. They won their games and that's all it takes. I feel happy anytime a SEC school goes to a bowl, but I like it a little more when Vandy does than I do the other schools," Duncan said.

Duncan, who is moving from guard to tackle this season, wants to see UK take a step up from its three straight winning seasons and bowl trips.

"I know for me personally that is a huge goal. We are excited about going to bowls and having winning seasons but as a program we want to take that next step and get to that next tier of bowl games. We are trying to push the level of bowl game up," Duncan said. "We have guys that know what it takes and how to push you to get better because you know what it takes to win. That's going to be a big help this year."

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