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Wednesday fall camp leftovers: Kemp a 'pit bull,' Stoops reaches out to former player

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Since Mark Stoops arrived last winter, Kentucky fans have hung on his every word. He's said (and done) all the right things in his first months on the job, but on Wednesday he issued a soundbite that has to shoot to the top of the list of his best quotes.

Fielding a question about the dimension freshman running back added by Jojo Kemp, Stoops broke out the hyperbole.

"He's a pit bull," Stoops said. "We do board drills over there and I thought he was going to pull a knife out of his sock and stab somebody. He's a pit bull. I love it."

Told of Stoops' description, Neal Brown laughed.

"I don't know about all that," UK's offensive coordinator said. "I hope not."

Nonetheless, Brown understood his meaning. Kemp, competing for immediate playing time, has asserted himself. In fact, Brown sees some of his position coach in Kemp.

"He attacks, and that's a little bit of Coach (Chad) Scott's personality coming (out) in him too," Brown said.

Kentucky fans will surely remember that Scott - a Florida native, like Kemp - rushed for 611 yards in his first season as a Wildcat in 2000 when he was named to the All-Southeastern Conference Freshman Team. Kemp surely wouldn't mind duplicating that success.

"He's not a follower," Scott said of Kemp. "He's driven. He's a kid that'll dictate the tempo. He'll set the tempo."

Though Kemp may not be a follower, Scott was quick to point out that veteran leadership will be important to his development. Fortunately, the running back atop the depth chart - Raymond Sanders - is more than willing to step up in that regard.

"More than anything, what's going to help him is a guy like Ray Sanders to teach him how to slow things down and actually see what's going on and do things accurately as opposed to doing it real fast," Scott said.

Stoops sends care package to former Cat

Matt Smith is one of a number of former UK football players participating in NFL training camps. Smith - a three-year starter at center for the Wildcats - is with the Atlanta Falcons looking to earn a spot on the roster.

As he goes through that grueling process, Smith got a little pick-me-up from a Lexington address. Stoops sent him a care package with some UK gear and a hand-written note, which Smith tweeted about this morning.

Harmon returns to team

Last week, Stoops said that sophomore cornerback J.D. Harmon was not practicing and was not expected to be with the team this season. But on Wednesday, UK announced that Harmon is with the team again and will practice. Harmon, however, will not play in games in 2013.

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