Full Day in the Land of Blues

Dec. 30, 2008

MEMPHIS, Tenn. – The Kentucky football team had another full day on Tuesday as the Wildcats continue preparation for the AutoZone Liberty Bowl.

The Wildcats had team meetings in the morning, followed by the official bowl awards luncheon. Athletics director Mitch Barnhart, Coach Rich Brooks and defensive end Jeremy Jarmon were UK’s featured speakers at the luncheon.

Southeastern Conference associate commissioner Debbie Corum was at the luncheon and presented plaques to the Wildcats who were voted to the Coaches’ All-SEC team – punter Tim Masthay, cornerback Trevard Lindley, linebacker Micah Johnson, offensive tackle Garry Williams and defensive tackle Myron Pryor. Quarterback/wide receiver Randall Cobb also received a plaque for being named to the SEC Coaches’ All-Freshman team. Masthay, a first-team Academic All-American, received an academic award presented by the Liberty Bowl.

After the luncheon, the Wildcats traveled to Memphis University School for a one-hour, 45-minute workout.

“I liked today a lot better than I liked yesterday, so that’s a good sign,” Brooks said. “We get closer to the game and the energy and enthusiasm were very good today. I’m hopeful we’re ready because I know that East Carolina is going to be ready.”

Brooks was asked about the outstanding East Carolina defensive personnel.

“I don’t think there’s any question they would be right there with some of the better defenses in our league,” the coach said. “They have very physical, fast guys, players who can make plays on the ball on the back end (and) big, physical, quick defensive lineman. They’re a very impressive team. Anybody who can hold West Virginia’s offense like they did gets your attention.”

On Tuesday night, the players will have the opportunity to attend the Phoenix at Memphis NBA game or a professional rodeo event.

Wednesday’s schedule includes the Fellowship of Christian Athletes Breakfast, team meetings and practice.

The 50th edition of the AutoZone Liberty Bowl will be played Friday, Jan. 2, at 5 p.m. EST (4 p.m. CST in Memphis) at Liberty Bowl Memorial Stadium. The game will be televised by ESPN and also will be carried on ESPN Radio, the Big Blue Sports Network (radio) and on ESPN360.com.

Wildcats Win Three out of Four at Team Welcome Party: The Kentucky football players won three out of four friendly competitions during the official AutoZone Liberty Bowl Team Welcome Party held Monday night at Jillian’s in downtown Memphis.

Defensive end Jeremy Jarmon got the evening going in the XBox college football video game. Guiding the Kentucky team, Jarmon defeated an East Carolina opponent, 10-7, with a field goal on the last play of the game.

Wide receiver Dicky Lyons got another Wildcat win during the “imitate Elvis Presley” event. Lyons got the crowd going with an excellent rendition of “All Shook Up” and was declared the winner by applause from the crowd. (“Thank you, thank you very much,” Lyons said in vintage Presley style after being named the winner.)

Tailback Tony Dixon got the deciding win in a one-on-one billiards game while East Carolina got a victory in a bowling event.

The more serious competition will be held Friday at 4 p.m. CST when the Wildcats take on the Pirates in the Liberty Bowl.

Catwalkin’ in Memphis: Kentucky fans are invited to participate in “Cat Walk” on Friday by cheering the players when they arrive at Liberty Bowl Memorial Stadium.

Fans should be at the stadium by 1:45 p.m. Central time. The team buses will arrive via Mississippi Avenue and stop where the avenue dead-ends (press box side of the stadium). The players will walk past Gate 4 and enter the South Tunnel of the stadium.