Jalen Whitlow to leave Kentucky

Updated: April 16, 2014, 2:43 PM ET
By Greg Ostendorf | ESPN.com

The quarterback battles in the SEC continue to take shape as Kentucky announced Wednesday that Jalen Whitlow, who started 15 games in his two seasons with the Wildcats, will transfer to another school.

"We respect Jalen and his decision as we want the best for him," coach Mark Stoops said in a statement. "I thank Jalen for his contributions to the team during his time at Kentucky. I want everyone to understand how hard he has worked and the effort he has given since our staff has been here."

Whitlow, an Alabama native, started eight games this past season and finished with 1,033 passing yards, five touchdowns and five interceptions. He also rushed for 457 yards and six touchdowns. His best game came at South Carolina, where the sophomore went 17 of 24 through the air for 178 yards, rushed for 69 yards and accounted for three touchdowns (two passing, one running).

[+] EnlargeJalen Whitlow
Streeter Lecka/Getty ImagesJalen Whitlow threw for 1,033 yards, ran for 457 and accounted for 11 total touchdowns this past season.

"I appreciate the University of Kentucky and what the coaching staff and administration have done for me," Whitlow said. "I also thank the community and the fan support I have received here. I wish the coaches and my teammates the best of luck."

Whitlow will finish the semester at Kentucky before transferring. He has two seasons of eligibility remaining.

With Whitlow out of the picture, Stoops and his staff will now focus their attention on returning starter Maxwell Smith, sophomore Patrick Towles, redshirt freshman Reese Phillips and true freshman Drew Barker as they look to find a starting quarterback.

Smith, who is recovering from shoulder surgery, has not practiced this spring.

The Wildcats will hold their spring game on Saturday, April 26.

Greg Ostendorf | email

Auburn/SEC reporter

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