Phillips, Wildcats Continue Preparation for Spring Game

April 18, 2012

LEXINGTON, Ky. – The University of Kentucky football team moved one day closer to the annual Blue/White Spring Game on Saturday by holding a two and a half hour practice Wednesday morning at the Nutter Training Center.

UK head coach Joker Phillips said after practice that Wednesday was the final true practice for the team this spring season. The head coach said the team will wear shorts and shoulder pads during practice Friday to fine tune some things before the Blue/White Game.

“This is our last day of working and getting physical and doing all the things that we need to do to get ourselves ready to play football,” Phillips said. “Friday we will be in shorts to work on technique and fundamentals.”

Phillips said the team had a very strong practice Wednesday, getting in some competitive work on both sides of the ball. Along those same lines, the head coach was again happy with the scrimmage film from last Saturday.

“I was really pleased with what I saw in the scrimmage,” Phillips said. “There were plays made on both sides of the ball and it was really competitive. We need to finish up these last two days strong. One is a fundamental and technique practice (Friday) and the last one is that we want to see how we compete in the scrimmage.”

Looking ahead to the Blue/White event on Saturday, which will have a regular game format just like last season, Phillips said he mainly wants to see players compete. Phillips said he and the coaching staff are starting to see playmakers develop and are looking for more to step forward.

“We really think right now we know who our playmakers are and guys who can make things happen,” Phillips said. “(Wide receiver) Demarco Robinson is one of those guys and (quarterback) Maxwell Smith is doing well for us and getting the ball out of his hands, which is important. People don’t consider (offensive guard) Larry Warford a playmaker but he is as big a playmaker as there is on this team. (Wide receiver) Daryl Collins has made a lot of plays. Ronnie Shields is holding down the starting tight end position and he has moved ahead of the rest of the guys. We have asked him to do a lot of things and were concerned early in the spring how he would handle that but he has stepped up to the plate and shown us he can do all the things we are asking him to do.

“On defense, (linebacker) Avery Williamson is playing really well and really pleased with the way (safety) Martavius Neloms is starting to lead this football team on defense. Two anchors inside, (defensive tackles Mister) Cobble and (Donte) Rumph are playing well.”

Phillips and the Wildcats will hold the final practice of the spring season Friday before the Blue/White Game on Saturday at 6 p.m. ET. There are several promotion items for fans this season at the spring game, which are posted below.

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Free Posters and Roster Cards to be Given Away: With the Blue/White Game being the first public football event since the conclusion of the 2011 season, UK Athletics has commemorated the season-ending victory over Tennessee – and the excitement of Commonwealth Stadium – with a special edition poster.

The poster features the celebration after UK’s 10-7 win, including quarterback Matt Roark being carried off the field by jubilant fans.  Quantities are limited and the posters will be given away first-come, first-served at the stadium gates.

In addition, fans attending the Blue/White Game may pick up free roster cards at the stadium gates.

“Super Surplus Sale” of Team Apparel: UK Athletics will have a “Super Surplus Sale” of team apparel Saturday in conjunction with the Blue/White Game.

Hundreds of items will be available from the sports of football, men’s basketball, baseball, soccer, track and volleyball.  The sale will include items such as jerseys, polo shirts, sweatshirts, warmups, hoodies, pants, etc.  This sale has been very popular in the past and items will be bargain-priced!

The sale will begin at 3 p.m. in the Wildcat Refuge area between the Blue and Red Lots at the stadium.  The sale will continue while supplies last, or through the conclusion of the Blue/White Game.

Fans May Renew Season Tickets at the Game: The stadium ticket office outside gate 4 will be open from 4:30 to 6:30 p.m. in order for current season-ticket holders to renew their tickets.

Can’t Make it to the Game?  Listen on the UK IMG Radio Network: Fans who can’t make it to the game can listen on the radio.  Pregame coverage begins at 5:30 p.m. with Tom Leach calling the play-by-play, Jeff Piecoro on analysis and Dick Gabriel reporting from the sidelines.

The UK IMG Radio Network will feature multiple stations across the Commonwealth, including WLAP (630 AM) in Lexington and WKJK (1080 AM) in Louisville.

Fans Invited to Attend Baseball and Football; Baseball Matches #1 vs. #2: Wildcat fans are invited to make it a baseball and football day on Saturday.

The Wildcat baseball team will play host to LSU at 2 p.m. at Cliff Hagan Stadium.  The teams are ranked No. 1 and No. 2 in the nation this week (LSU #1, UK #2) by Collegiate Baseball magazine.  UK is 32-5 overall this season and LSU is 30-7.  The teams are tied for the lead in the Southeastern Conference with 11-4 records.

Tickets for the baseball game may be purchased at or by calling 1-800-928-CATS (2287).