Exclusive Q&A with Kentucky’s Mr. Everything

By Ned Colegrove
Foxsportssouth.com

May 26, 2010

Kentucky’s

Randall Cobb is listed as Wide Receiver/Quarterback on the team

roster.  Ask the SEC’s defensive coordinators if there’s another guy in

the game who can do as much in crunch time as Cobb can.  A converted

QB, he’s done it all in his first two seasons in Lexington, rushing for

889 yards and a whopping 17 TD’s while grabbing 60 balls for 644 yards

and 6 TD’s- he also returns punts and holds for kicks.  Cobb helped

lead the Wildcats to their best rushing marks in 14 years last season

and a fourth-straight bowl game.  He was named 1st Team All-SEC.

Says

Offensive Coordinator Randy Sanders, “I’ve never asked a guy to do so

many different things as we ask of Randall- I’ve got no doubt that if

we put him on defense, he would have an interception return for a

touchdown, too.”

We talked with Kentucky’s Mr. Everything about being a marked man in the nation’s toughest conference.


Q. 

Clearly, you’re one of the most dynamic guys in the conference, if not

the nation.  Now that teams have seen you for another season and you’ll

be on everyone’s radar, what kinds of things do you expect defenses to

do to try and stop you?

A.Well, right now we haven’t had

another proven receiver or passing game, so I think a lot of teams, if

they see the Wildcat, they’re going to start trying to stack the box. 

I’ll expect some safeties to be aware of where I’m at if I’m out at

receiver.  So I’m looking to get double-covered.  But I don’t think it

will last long, because a lot of guys are ready to step up and take

over their roles at receiver.  They’re going to open up some things for

me as well as open up things for themselves.

Q. 

So have you been pretty pleased with what you’ve seen so far this

spring as far as the team trying to spread things out and have some

more guys step up and help you out a little bit?

A. 

Oh yeah.  It’s hard to say how far we’ve come because we haven’t really

had competition, other than ourselves.  But you can see in practice

guys are really molding into position.  Chris Matthews (Sr. WR, #8),

he’s a guy that’s really going to help us out a lot this year- he’s a

big, tough receiver and he’ll go get the ball.  Last year, he was still

trying to understand what we were tyring to do and understand the

playbook, but now he has it down pat and he’s ready to go this year.

Q. 

You’ve done a little bit of everything in your career so far.  Are you

pretty happy with where you’ve settled in to this team as far as your

role- the ratio of direct snaps and running plays versus lining up

outside and going downfield in the passing game?

A. 

Yeah, I love it.  Everything about Lexington and UK football.  As much

as a pounding as I’ve taken, I really have understood why you have to

have more than one guy on the team.  Coming in this year with Derrick

Locke (Sr., #20) and Donald Russell (So., #23) at RB and our threats at

receiver, too- once we put all of it together, I think we’re going to

be really good.


Q. 

Talk about developing your skills as a WR as far as route running, etc.

and what your goals were for improving this off season at the WR

position.

A.  Personally, the biggest thing I wanted to

work on was making sure that I’m quick in getting out of my cuts.  I

noticed that I was tending to be a little slow because it’s not as

natural to me, this being my second or third year playing receiver.  I

never really played it before, so there is a lot of stuff I’ve had to

learn. 

I’m still trying to master it and get it all down but

it’s going to take time and take reps and that’s what I’ve been trying

to do this spring and summer.  Doing a lot of drills with cutting and

making sure I’m getting better at route running.

Q.  During the biggest wins last season- against Auburn and Georgia specifically (223 all-purpose yds, 3 TD’s)

you were front and center.  What is it about when the clock gets to the

4th quarter and the lights are shining brightest that triggers

something inside of you?

A.  As the game goes on, I get

hungrier and I want the ball in my hands more.  We’ve had a few big

wins last year and played in a lot of close games but I just want to

make sure we can capitalize and finish this year.  The thing that

triggers me is just my heart.  I’ve always played with so much heart

and pride in what I do, and I think it just really shows when everybody

else gets tired.

Q. You can

help the team so much when you have the ball in your hands, but are you

the kind of guy who looks to help his team just as much without the

ball, as a team leader?

A.  Oh

yeah, definitely.  That’s my purpose.  That’s what I’m on this team

for.  I know that I have the ability to make a big play, but I want to

make sure that I’m helping the guys around me to make them realize that

they have the confidence themselves to make a big play just so we can

all work together and get the job done.

Q. 

Coach Sanders compared you to Hines Ward when he was playing in college

at Georgia- is there a guy you try to model your game after or you want

to be compared to?

A.  (Hines Ward) is exactly who I try

to model my game after.  That’s what I look for- he’s a big tough

receiver and that’s what I want to be known for, even though I’m not

the biggest guy on the team.

Q.  So we can expect to see some big down-field blocks from you then?

A.  That’s the plan!  That’s what I’ve been training for.

Q. 

When you’re watching highlights on Saturday or Sunday, who are some of

the other guys you keep tabs on- who are some of the top multiple

threat guys that you like to watch?

A.  I find myself

looking at a lot of older guys now, like DeSean Jackson, Percy Harvin,

Wes Welker, all the type of guys that I would be on the next level.  I

try to see what kinds of things they do to help get open and use it in

my game.  But I also keep up with a lot of guys in my league as far as

A.J. Green and Julio Jones- we have a tremendous amount of athletes in

the SEC and I like to keep up with them and see what everybody’s doing.

Q. What has the transition been like going from Coach Brooks to Coach Phillips?

A. 

I think the biggest thing is just the intensity.  A lot of things are

the same.  Coach Brooks and Coach Phillips have kept us very

disciplined over the years, and Coach Phillips came in and realized

we’re a good team with a lot of talent.  One of the things we haven’t

been in the past is physical while playing fast.  That’s one of the

things we wanted to incorporate in our spring practice.  You saw a lot

more intensity because people started to care about their jobs more and

take care of their responsibilities.


Q.

That game on the end of the schedule every year must mean a lot to you

being from Tennessee (Alcoa HS).  Right now you guys are 0-2 against

the Vols so far in your career.  What is that game like playing against

them for you and what do you hope to show them this season in Knoxville?

A. 

I was waiting on that question!  The last two years, we had our chances

but we just didn’t get the job done and finish like we needed to.  It’s

rough on me because I have to go home and listen to all the UT fans and

my friends messing with me, so it’s a very important game to me.  But I

want to take it a game at a time and focus on Louisville and get ready

for the season.

Q. With a

lot of experienced players returning on offense, tell us what the

feeling is like around this team for what kind of season the Wildcats

are capable of this fall?

A.  Coach Phillips has really

installed “Operation: Win”.  The feeling around the team is that we

really don’t get the national respect we deserve.  We’re going to use

that as motivation and prove something this year.  We’ve been known as

a basketball school and we want to make this a perennial powerhouse as

far as football and basketball go.  We just need to start finishing

these close games and start winning.  We just have to win games.

Q. So if you had to pick one word to describe this team as you guys head towards the 2010 season, what would it be?

A.  Motivated.