From UK Athletics

Freshman outside linebacker recognized for critical blocked punt in Saturday’s win


LEXINGTON, Ky. – Kentucky freshman outside linebacker Josh Paschal has been named Southeastern Conference Special Teams Player of the Week for his game-changing blocked punt in the Wildcats’ 24-20 victory over Eastern Michigan on Saturday, the league announced on Monday.

It is the second time a UK player has earned SEC Special Teams Player of the Week honors this season. Senior kicker Austin MacGinnis’ perfect performance in a close win at South Carolina on Sept. 16 also was recognized by the league.

Paschal, from Olney, Md., set up the eventual game-winning touchdown by knifing through the line and punter shield to block Jake Julien’s punt deep in the Eagles’ end of the field. The block went for an 18-yard loss and set up Benny Snell, Jr.’s 12-yard scoring run on the next play that gave the Cats a 24-14 lead with just under 12 minutes remaining in the game.

Paschal, who has been dubbed “Blitz Baby” by his defensive teammates, also registered a quarterback hurry on third down just before his blocked punt and earlier shared a sack with Josh Allen.

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