Brooks ignores Spurrier’s comment

The UK football team has all the motivation it needs for Thursday night’s matchup against South Carolina.

The showdown with the Gamecocks comes with several big storylines.

UK is ranked No. 8 in the country, its highest ranking since 1977 when the team was No. 6. The Cats will be playing in front of a nationally-televised audience on ESPN, and UK controls its own fate in the Southeastern Conference East Division with a brutal three-game stretch against No. 11 South Carolina, No. 1 Louisiana State and No. 9 Florida.

But if that wasn’t enough, the “Ol’ Ball Coach” from South Carolina might have stirred a few emotions with his comments regarding Georgia following a victory over the Bulldogs earlier in the season.

“It wasn’t like they were some big, powerful team,” said South Carolina head coach Steve Spurrier. “They’ve actually lost five in a row to Eastern Division opponents. Kentucky and Vandy beat ‘em last year.”

At his weekly news conference yesterday, head coach Rich Brooks said there isn’t any extra incentive for beating the Gamecocks despite Spurrier’s comments.

“I think this game will be played on the merits of the South Carolina players, going on the road in a tough place to play and both teams have an awful lot at stake,” Brooks said.

“If we win it, we go to 2-0, which is also pretty good,” he said. “That to me is the motivation of this game.”

Brooks, who was on the San Francisco 49ers coaching staff when Spurrier was a quarterback, called Spurrier a long-time friend.

“(He’s) confident, cocky, brash and a winner,” Brooks said. “He hasn’t changed. He’s the same guy he was when he was a quarterback for the 49ers. He speaks his mind.”

Williams tabbed SEC      Offensive Lineman of the Week

Offensive lineman Garry Williams was named the Southeastern Conference Offensive Lineman of the Week yesterday for his performance against Florida Atlantic on Saturday.

Williams, a junior from Louisville, recorded four knockdown blocks and didn’t allow a quarterback hurry or sack Saturday.

The honor marks the third time this season a Cats’ player has been tabbed SEC Offensive Lineman of the Week. Senior offensive lineman Jason Leger received the honor following his performances against Kent State and Arkansas.


CBS announced yesterday that they will televise the UK-LSU game on Oct. 13. The Tigers, who were ranked No. 1 in the Associated Press poll this week, will battle No. 9 Florida before their showdown with the Cats.

Kickoff is scheduled for 3:30 p.m.

Injury Report

Several players did not practice yesterday because of nagging injuries, Brooks said.

Linebacker Johnny Williams sat out yesterday’s practice with plantar fasciitis, a foot inflammation. Running backs Rafael Little (thigh bruise) and Tony Dixon (strained hip) also sat out, but both are expected to play against South Carolina.

Tailback Alfonso Smith and cornerback E.J. Adams might return Thursday after sitting out against FAU, Brooks said. Smith hasn’t played since spraining his ankle against Arkansas, and Adams hasn’t played since injuring his wrist in the season opener against Eastern Kentucky.