Kentucky senior quarterback Terry Wilson likely will get a second shot at Eastern Michigan on Sept. 3 when the Wildcats take on the visiting Eagles in each team's opener.
It couldn't end up much worse than his first opportunity, though.
In last season's second game, during the third quarter, Wilson was dropped on a horse-collar tackle, suffering a torn patella tendon in his left knee that required season-ending surgery. Wilson was 14-for-26 for 114 yards until he was hurt and had run eight times for 43 yards and a touchdown.
The Wildcats have not chosen a starter, but Wilson has returned and is anticipated to be the leading contender for the job.
He is gearing up, all right.
From CatsPause.com, Wilson posted a video of him running close to full speed July 1 and recently provided the narration for a UK football hype video touting his 2020 comeback.
"You never know what life's going to throw at you," Wilson said. "Might be an injury. Might be a setback. Might be something nobody could have ever predicted. You just never know. The game can be taken away. I know that firsthand.
"After the last couple of months, we all do. But now, we're coming home. We're going to come together. We're going to work. We're going to get ready to take that field. We're not going to take one moment for granted because we know the game can be taken away. It's time for us to take it back."
The scoop on Stoops
Mark Stoops took over at Kentucky in 2013 and is 44-44, 2-2 in bowls and 20-36 in the SEC. He's 53 and a Youngstown, Ohio, native. Stoops was a defensive back at Iowa and an assistant at six schools.
* Eastern lists two Kentucky players – junior defensive back Russell Vadan IV from Louisville and freshman linebacker Brycen Huddleston from Ft. Thomas.
* The game was originally set for Sept. 5. The pandemic prompted May's Kentucky Derby to be rescheduled for that date, so the EMU-Kentucky game was moved to the 3rd.
* This will be the third meeting. The Wildcats won, 38-17, on Sept. 7, 2019, and 24-20 on Sept. 30, 2017, both at Lexington. Returning quarterback Preston Hutchinson ran one time for no gain last year against Kentucky.
* Eastern coach Chris Creighton, 51, will be in his seventh season. He's 28-47 at EMU (0-3 in bowls) and 16-32 in the Mid-American Conference. Creighton started 3-21 at Eastern.
* Kentucky has players from Detroit King, Walled Lake Central, Oak Park and Detroit Cass Tech.
Catching up with Crosby
Las Vegas end and former Eagles standout Maxx Crosby, who had 10 sacks his rookie season, told the Las Vegas Review-Journal's Ed Graney:
“I know what we need to beat the (world champion) Chiefs. Well, not the exact formula, but I know how much confidence is important in a locker room. If you ask me if I’m going to get (Super Bowl MVP quarterback Patrick) Mahomes, I will say yes every time. I’ve put in the work. I want to show all the guys that we can beat anyone. I have no problem being that guy and taking any heat for it. I want to be a leader. I want to set the example.”
Crosby will get his shots at Mahomes on Oct. 11 at Kansas City and Nov. 22 in Las Vegas.
The paper also said Crosby hosted an 11-hour radiothon to help Intermountain Primary Children’s Hospital.
"I’m not going to just sit back and enjoy the life of being an NFL player and having more money than the average American," he told the Review-Journal. "I want to help people. I'm just excited to be in a position that allows me to do so."
Kicking it off
What: Eastern Michigan (6-7 last season, 3-5 in the MAC, with a 24-20 loss to Pitt in the Quick Lane Bowl) vs. Kentucky (8-5, 3-5 in the SEC, with a 37-30 win over Virginia Tech in the Belk Bowl).
When: Noon, Thursday, Sept. 3.
Where: Kroger Field, Lexington.
Radio/TV: WEMU 89.1, TV TBA.
Against the big boys
Here's how the Eagles have done facing Power Five teams:
Big Ten: 3-38
Big 12: 0-1
►The victories have come at Rutgers, Purdue and Illinois, all under coach Chris Creighton.
Art Brooks is a freelance writer.