Kentucky concludes the season Sat., Nov. 24 at Tennessee. The game kicks off at 12:21 p.m. ET and will be televised on the SEC Network.
Nineteen Kentucky seniors were honored before the game.
Kentucky won its third-consecutive Senior Day game. It is the first time that UK has won three-straight Senior Day games since winning nine in a row from 1952-60.
Joker Phillips becomes the first Kentucky head coach to go undefeated in Senior Day games since Andy Gill went 1-0 in 1918-19 (UK did not play any home games in 1918). Phillips is the only coach in school history to go undefeated on Senior Day, with a minimum of three games.
Kentucky entered the game having played the toughest schedule in the nation, according to the Colley Matrix and Anderson and Hester computer ratings used in the official BCS standings.
Kentucky is fielding one of the nation’s youngest teams, playing 14 true freshmen and 26 total (true and redshirt) frosh, one of the nation’s top-six teams in each category. UK also has played 16 first-time starters this season, one of the nation’s top-15 teams in that category.
UK scored on its opening possession of the game for the second time in 2012 and the first time since an 84-yard touchdown drive against No. 12 Georgia. The Wildcats operated with 14 plays and 69 yards for the opening score, cumulating in an 11-yard touchdown pass from Jalen Whitlow to Gene McCaskill.
UK’s 14-play scoring drive to open the game was its longest scoring drive since the season opener at No. 25 Louisville.
The last UK senior wide receiver with a touchdown catch on a UK senior day was Chris Matthews in 2010 vs. Vanderbilt. Before Matthews’ TD grab vs. Vandy in 2010, the last UK seniors with TD catches on senior day came in 2007 vs. Tennessee (Keenan Burton, two; Steve Johnson, two; Jacob Tamme, one).
UK held Samford to 102 total yards of offense, the fewest yards for a UK opponent since the Wildcats held Vanderbilt to 91 yards on Nov. 16, 1996.
Last time UK held an opponent to negative rushing yards was in the 1996 contest with Vanderbilt, limiting the Dores to -26 yards.
Kentucky finished with a season-high five sacks, adding eight tackles for a loss.
Last time UK had five sacks in a game was Nov. 13, 2010 vs. Vanderbilt.
Kentucky limited Samford to three points, the fewest since holding Western Kentucky to three points in the 2011 season opener.
UK held Samford to 2-for-12 on third-down conversions, its best defensive performance of the year.
UK rushed for a season-high 342 yards for its first 300+ yard rushing performance since running for 340 yards vs. Jacksonville State on Oct. 22, 2011.
Senior WR La’Rod King caught two passes for eight yards and now has 1,628 career yards.
Linebacker Avery Williamson, who entered the game leading the league in tackles and tackles per game, had 13 tackles, including two sacks.
With at least 13 tackles in four-consecutive games, Williamson became the first UK player with 13+ tackles in four-straight games since Randy Holleran in 1990.
Junior tailback Raymond Sanders rushed 15 times for a career-high 123 yards with one touchdown and a long of 31 yards.
Sanders now has 1,024 rushing yards in his career, becoming the 33rd player in UK history to reach 1,000 career rushing yards.
He is the first player to rush for 100 or more yards since he turned the trick in a 115-yard game vs. Kent State on Sept. 8.
Sanders collected a 14-yard touchdown rush in the second quarter, his fifth rushing TD of the year and the eighth of his career.
Freshman QB Jalen Whitlow finished 10-for-13 in the air for 66 yards, also rushing seven times for a career-high 59 yards and one touchdown.
Whitlow capped off an 11-play drive in the first quarter with a career-long 20 yard TD scamper, his third-rushing TD of the year.
Freshman WR Daryl Collins took his first career kickoff return for 32 yards in the second quarter. Collins also added a catch for 11 yards.
Collins also returned his first career punts, finishing with three returns for 45 yards and a long of 22 yards.
Linebacker Bud Dupree finished with eight tackles and a pair of sacks. On the year, he has 5.5 sacks and 81 tackles.
Freshman running back Dyshawn Mobley set new career highs with 16 attempts for 82 yards.
Junior Jonathan George had his second-best rushing performance of the year, toting it 17 times for 76 yards and a touchdown, his fourth TD of 2012.
George now has six rushing TDs in his career.
Junior defensive lineman Tristan Johnson picked up a fumble and carried it 25 yards for a touchdown in the second quarter, his first career fumble recovery and his first career TD.
Johnson is the first UK defensive lineman with a touchdown since Ventrell Jenkins had a fumble return for a TD in the 2009 Liberty Bowl.
It was UK’s first defensive touchdown of the 2012 season and the first for UK since Martavius Neloms had a fumble return for a TD against Jacksonville State in 2011.
Senior defensive lineman Donte Rumph had a sack and forced a fumble that led to Johnson’s touchdown. It was Rumph’s fourth sack this year and the fifth of his career, with his fumble forced his first since stripping the ball in 2010.
Senior defensive back Mikie Benton charted his first two career tackles for a loss.
Sophomore fullback Darrell “DJ” Warren hauled in his first reception of the year.
Senior kicker Craig McIntosh connected on his sixth field goal of the year in the second quarter, a 35-yard attempt, and his seventh of 2012 in the third quarter, a 43-yard attempt. McIntosh is now 7-for-13 in 2012 and is 30-for-42 in his career.
Freshman cornerback Cody Quinn had a pass breakup and now is tied for the team lead with four pass break-ups on the year.
Miles Simpson finished with nine tackles and had a pass breakup, equaling him with Quinn for the team lead.
Sophomore offensive lineman Darrian Miller was credited with his first career rush on a lateral, rushing for four yards.
Senior WR Gene McCaskill hauled in his second touchdown catch of the 2012 season, connecting with Whitlow on an 11-yard strike capping off the opening drive of the game.
With three catches for 35 yards vs. Samford, McCaskill has 56 catches for 550 yards and three touchdowns in his career.
He is the first senior WR with a TD reception on senior day since Chris Matthews in 2010 against Vanderbilt.