By LARRY VAUGHT
WLEX-TV “BBN Tonight” host Maggie Davis is “comfortable” making a 9-3 prediction about Kentucky’s upcoming season.
She also believes that junior linebacker Trevin Wallace could be one “big surprise” player for the Wildcats this season that could be instrumental in a potential 9-3 season.
“He’s had some great moments like the blocked kick return for a touchdown against Florida when Kroger Field got the loudest I’ve ever heard it,” Davis said about UK’s 2021 win over Florida. “But I think he has kind of flown under the radar.”
He was the nation’s No. 35 overall prospect and No. 1 linebacker in the 247Sports ranking — and No. 6 overall player in Georgia — when he picked UK over Auburn and Ole Miss.
Wallace played receiver, running back, quarterback, and multiple linebacker spots at Wayne County (Ga.) and also returned kicks. He had 96 tackles his senior year but also rushed for 910 yards and seven scores, including an incredible 382 yards and three touchdowns in his final prep game when he also played every snap at linebacker. plus had reps as a kick and punt returner during his prep career.
He’s also so athletic that he was a four-year letter winner in track and broke a 44-year-old school record in the long jump with a leap of 23-4 1/4 inches. He also won the state weightlifting championship with a power clean of 335 pounds.
He has played in 24 games the last two years with 86 tackles. He started six of 12 games last season but often was overshadowed by older linebacker DeAndre Square, Jacquez Jones, Jordan Wright and JJ Weaver.
“Those other linebackers (last year) were so old and experienced and they played so much and made so many plays that you just did not always think about Trevin,” Davis said. “He has had some great moments but I think this is really his year to step into a main role and make that position his.
“Weaver is back on the outside, but I think Wallace is going to be one of the main linebackers inside that you think about and see make a lot of plays for a defense that I think is going to be very, very solid.”