A source has told LEX 18 Sports that starting UK running back Raymond Sanders will not play against Louisville on Saturday after suffering a knee injury in practice on Wednesday.
Sanders underwent knee surgery during the offseason.
Sanders, a sophomore, had been Kentucky's starting tailback in each of its first two games. He rushed 13 times for 35 yards in the Wildcats' season-opening victory over Western Kentucky, and then looked much better when he carried eight times for 62 yards this past Saturday against Central Michigan. He did not play in the game against Louisville a year ago.
The bulk of the Wildcat rushing load now falls on the shoulders of freshman Josh Clemons, who is coming off of a 126-yard performance against CMU where he averaged nine yards on 14 carries.
Up to this point, UK offensive coordinator Randy Sanders has been utilizing a "thunder and lightning" ground attack, with Sanders serving as the speed back and Clemons supplying the power. The concern for Sanders now becomes whether or not the freshman can shoulder the task of playing an entire game as the offense's lone feature back.
The injury to Sanders could open the door for junior Coshik Williams, who had been listed third at the position on UK's depth chart, to get a few touches. Sophomore Jonathan George, freshman Marcus Caffey and redshirt freshman Brandon Gainer are the other Kentucky running backs who might see the field. None of the players mentioned above have played in a game this season.
This is certainly a blow to the Wildcats, but because of the way Clemons has played up to this point, it's not a devastating one.