Kentucky Spring Football Notebook

Kentucky's Mark Stoops was willing to cut his team a little slack Monday after a somewhat sluggish start to the second day of spring football practice. Read why in this AllWildcats update.

Kentucky's Mark Stoops was willing to cut his team a little slack Monday after a somewhat sluggish start to the second day of spring football practice.

Many of the players must have been up late Sunday night, he joked, celebrating the UK basketball team's win over Michigan to advance to the Final Four.

"Pretty decent day," Stoops said. "Overall, decent work here the first two days. It is good to get outside with a good weather day today."

The Wildcats had been limited to work in the Nutter Fieldhouse on Friday due to cold, rainy weather in Lexington. Sunshine and spring temperatures near 60 helped make Monday's workout more pleasant.

Kentucky is further along than it was last year at this time, when Stoops was settling into his first spring practice as a head coach.

"We are doing a lot of things better," he said. "We are physically better, which I talked about the other day. I think the quarterbacks and receivers are more on the same page for early in camp and throwing it better."

There was a bit of bad news coming out of Monday's workout. Stoops announced that senior wide receiver Javess Blue, who led UK with 43 receptions for 586 yards and four touchdowns last season, will miss the remainder of spring with a shoulder injury. The junior college product had surgery Friday and will face three to four months of rehabilitation. He is expected to be back at full strength for fall camp.

The receiver corps picked up a player, though, when senior Demarco Robinson was reinstated after serving an indefinite suspension at the end of last season.

Defensively, the staff is excited about the progress and potential of ends Alvin "Bud" Dupree and Za'Darius Smith.

"I was encouraged with the offseason, guys like Bud and Z," Stoops said. "Out here at practice and today we need to remind them to continue to push that way. Avery (Williamson) is tough to replace, but Bud has been very good in that (leadership) role."

Junior college transfer A.J. Stamps has impressed the staff early with his play at cornerback.

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