When Mark Stoops arrived on campus, the wide receiver situation at Kentucky was dire.
There were three returning scholarship wideouts for then-offensive coordinator Neal Brown and receivers coach Tommy Mainord to use in an Air Raid offense.
At their previous stop at Texas Tech, the duo liked to have "10 guys on the bus" so they could go two deep at each receiver spot and then have guys who could rotate between different positions, Mainord said in 2013.
It's 2015 now and Kentucky has 11 scholarship wide receivers (with the recent scholarship given to senior Joey Herrick) and significant depth at almost every spot.
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It almost feels luxurious for the wide receiver coach who has been getting by the first two seasons, especially after a rash of injuries limited UK last year, too.
Mainord will have to make tougher decisions about starters and playmakers this season. But coaches and players think there will be plenty of catches to go around.
"We got really good problems out there," junior quarterback Patrick Towles said of the logjam at wide receiver. "We have so many people who can play, which is a really, really good problem to have. We have a lot of depth out there, which we haven't here in a while."
Almost every day of fall camp, a different wide receiver is mentioned for a big play: Garrett Johnson, Ryan Timmons, Jeff Badet. Or the much publicized one-handed grabs by Alexander Montgomery, Dorian Baker and Blake Bone.
"The wide receivers are making very good plays, they're growing up, but there's competition," Coach Mark Stoops said. "It's next-man-up mentality, so guys better make plays or somebody behind them, or somebody sitting on the bench, is ready to go in there and make a play."
But Stoops doesn't anticipate a lot of squabbling over playing time. If new offensive coordinator Shannon Dawson has his way, there will be plenty of catches to go around.
"There's competition, don't get me wrong," Stoops continued. "You don't want to get buried too far down there or you won't see the field. And we can move guys around, so the playmakers will be on the field."
Dawson has said the goal of his offense is to get the ball into his playmakers' hands. But that doesn't mean the catches will be limited to just one or two wideouts, he said.
"You can look back throughout years, and I think we've had 12 or 13 guys catch passes in a game," he said, noting that some of those players were running backs and tight ends, too.
"There's been places where we've had three guys over 100 receptions in one year. It just depends on how many playmakers you have really. The more playmakers you have, the more you can spread the ball around."
Last season at West Virginia, seven different players caught double-digit passes, including four of them with 30 or more. Kevin White led the way with 109 catches for 1,447 yards with 10 touchdowns. Mario Alford added 65 catches for 945 yards and 11 scores.
The Mountaineers' 26 receiving touchdowns were dispersed among five different players, with the bulk going to White and Alford.
The season before, it was more spread out with nine different players earning double-digit grabs, including three with 35 or more. Five different players had 400 yards or more.
The 16 receiving touchdowns were split among seven players.
"Ultimately the ball finds the best guy a lot," Dawson said. "It's not like we sit there and tell them, 'Look, you need to throw it to this guy,' but they're not dumb either. They're going to try to get the best guys the ball."
Kentucky will be at its best if it's able to spread it around some, he said, because defenses can't "really hone in on where you're going with it."
While everyone has been fixated on the quarterback competition this pre-season, the one the Cats' QB is most entertained by is the wideout rivalries.
"Everybody's trying to get those reps, make those plays, and it's bringing out the best in those guys," he said.
That receiving room gets interesting.
"There's a lot of urgency in there, but I think they all want to get in there and compete," Mainord said. "There's a lot of guys playing their tails off and really trying hard."
There's no choice but to play your tail off, Herrick said: "It's just non-stop now with everything. It never ends. You can never take a play off, take a day off."
All season, whoever has his name called with the starting lineup will know his spot isn't safe, Bone said recently. But he said the competition's been good for all involved.
"We're going to have a new level of swagger, a new level of confidence out there on the field this year," Bone said. "We're a lot more confident we can make plays this year."