Joshin’ Around with a Wildcat

Josh Forrest came to Kentucky as a wide receiver. He was moved to linebacker during his redshirt season in 2011. The Cats’ starting middle linebacker led the team with 110 tackles in 2014 and ranked third in the Southeastern Conference in tacklers per game. A native of Paducah, Ky., he has already completed his degree and is now adding a second major in communications. He had 8 tackles in the Cats 14-9 loss to Florida on Saturday. It was their 29th straight loss to the Gators.

Is there a difference between thinking you can win against teams like Florida and expecting to win?

I think everybody is thinking we’re going to go out there and win. We’re gonna go out there and do this. It’s totally different from how it was last year and the year before.

When did you feel like you were a linebacker?

Probably at the end of last year. Coming into this year, I felt like I had a good spot, and I felt like I was an SEC linebacker.

Did you play defense in high school?

I played safety in high school.

Forrest stops JonesWhich position did you prefer?

Offense definitely.

Now, what do you like about playing defense?

That I’m able to create my own path. I’m able to make plays. I don’t have to depend on the o-line to block and the quarterback to make a good pass and things like that. On defense you just run to the ball and make a play.

If you had to choose: a sack or an interception?

Interception. Just because that’s getting the ball back to the offense.

Is that the highlight of your career – the interception that you returned for a touchdown?

Probably so. I still see that on a lot of highlights.

How much do you need to win one of these statement games against a ranked SEC opponent?

We still have a long time to go and a lot of time to get better.

Do you notice a difference in the crowd after the stadium renovation?

They showed up and showed out. I really appreciate the turnout.

What was the message from Coach Stoops?

He just told us to put it behind us and get back to work.

Photo by VICTORIA GRAFF | Contributing photographer