‘He made some big catches out there.’ Terry Wilson likes freshman receiver
Bryce Oliver walked into a postgame media scrum wearing red plaid pants and a thick gold watch on his left wrist. The redshirt freshman wore it confidently.
“Honestly, I have the best swag on the team,” Oliver said. “I dress the best on the team, that’s not even a question. If anybody wants to say they dress better than me, don’t even listen to ’em, cause that’s all me. I got that.”
Oliver played with a healthy swagger on Friday night, too: He totaled 105 yards and a touchdown on eight receptions during Kentucky’s 2019 Blue-White game, the final scrimmage of a spring session where-in UK has tried to find some consistency within a receiving corps in need of depth beyond Lynn Bowden.
“He’s one of the young guys that can emerge as a playmaker,” head coach Mark Stoops said of the 6-foot-1, 211-pound redshirt freshman. “He’s a big, strong guy that can run and catch. So he’s got to continue to work really hard and put it all together.”
A couple of other guys stood out early in the passing game — Isaiah Epps reeled in a 60-yard ball from Terry Wilson, and tight end Justin Rigg capitalized on his few targets — but Oliver was the star among the pass-catchers.
“Bryce, he’s been looking really good,” Wilson said with a grin. “He made some big catches out there. Bryce is a really good receiver. I just feel like when he gets around the learning curve and learns more about the game, he’ll be solid.”
Oliver thought he could have run his routes more crisply but felt good about his performance, much of which came against UK’s first-team defense. He said he’s taken to heart the coaching staff’s plea for more consistency.
One of his catches was a tip-toe snag between a defender and the sideline.
“I feel like every ball that comes my way is a 50-50 ball, but to me it’s a 100-to-zero ball, ‘cause I’m gonna come down with it,” Oliver said. “That’s just my mentality coming in and out of the game and in and out of practices.”