Burton 50-50 following Friday practice

NASHVILLE, Tenn. – The Kentucky football team had a two-hour, 10-minute practice Saturday afternoon in Nashville as the Wildcats continue to prepare to play Florida State in the Gaylord Hotels Music City Bowl.

“For the most part they have (responded well in practice),” Coach Rich Brooks said after the workout. “I was pleased with the tempo of practice today. We have to carry that over to the (game) field. We just have to see how that’s going to go.”

Brooks reported that senior wide receiver Keenan Burton, who is dealing with a knee injury, did not have any swelling in the joint and participated in the first half of Friday’s practice. Brooks said that it is “50-50” if Burton will play on Monday, depending on how the knee reacts to today’s exertion.

“Keenan is a very important factor you always have to account for,” Brooks said of Burton’s importance to the UK offense. “With him on the field, it opens up everybody else and you can’t concentrate on Jacob Tamme, Steve Johnson, or Dicky Lyons. He’s clearly a guy who’s made big plays during his career and if we don’t have him we’re going to miss those plays.”

The team will attend the players-only party on Friday night. Saturday’s schedule includes the bowl coaches luncheon, followed by practice in the afternoon. The game will be played on Monday, Dec. 31, at 4 p.m. EST (3 p.m. CST in Nashville) at LP Field.

Tamme Represents Wildcats at FCA Breakfast: Many of the Kentucky football players attended the Fellowship of Christian Athletes bowl breakfast on Thursday morning at the Opryland Hotel, with tight end Jacob Tamme representing UK as one of the featured speakers.

With it being the Christmas season, Tamme spoke on two lessons from Jesus’ birth as discussed in the Bible’s second chapter of Luke. He noted the importance of when Jesus was born, it was not in a castle as royalty, but instead in a manger.

“God works in all people in all places,” Tamme said of what he learned from that. “People who are in mangers today, let us not forget them, for those are God’s children.”

Tamme’s second theme was, “Make yourself available to God. Just like at the time of Jesus’ birth, often there is no room for him in our inn and there is no room for him in our lives. Time is the biggest thing we can give God today.”

Six Wildcats Complete Degrees: Following the completion of the fall semester, six Wildcats have completed their bachelor’s degrees and will play in the bowl game as University of Kentucky graduates, including wide receiver Keenan Burton, free safety Martin McPherson, center Eric Scott, tight end Jacob Tamme, strong safety Roger Williams, and linebacker Wesley Woodyard.

Alumni Office has Welcome Reception on Sunday: All UK alumni and fans are invited to stop in for a welcome reception at the official UK Alumni Association hotel – Homewood Suites at 706 Church Street in downtown Nashville. The reception will be Sunday from 4-6 p.m. CST.

Association members will receive a commemorative gift by showing their membership card or keytag. A cash bar and snacks will be available. Following the reception, alumni and friends will walk down to 2nd Avenue to watch the Battle of the Bands, which begins at 6 p.m. CST. Visit www.musiccitybowl.com for more details on Battle of the Bands.

Fans Invited to Official Pre-Game Party: Put your game face on and join UK alumni and fans for the official pre-game party on Monday from 11 a.m. to 2 p.m. at BB King’s Blues Club, located in downtown Nashville at the corner of Commerce Street and 2nd Avenue.

Located just minutes from L.P. Field, BB King’s Blues Club offers a unique atmosphere and experience in the Music City. Tickets are $35 each and will be available for pick up at “will call” at BB King’s at 10 a.m. on the day of the event. Admission includes a Backyard BBQ buffet, live entertainment, and unlimited soda, coffee and tea. A cash bar will be available. Total Sports Travel is handling reservations for this event. Reservations can be made at www.totalsportstravel.com or by calling 1-888-367-8781. (Note: the UK Basketball game against Florida International will be aired at BB King’s).

“Cat Walk” Set for Music City Bowl: The “Cat Walk” has been set for 12:30 p.m. CST at LP Field before the Music City Bowl.

Fans are encouraged to line up on the east side of the stadium (same side of the stadium as parking lot “C”) in order to greet the Wildcats when they arrive. Note that Kentucky is the visiting team this year, therefore the Cat Walk will be on the opposite side of the stadium from a year ago.