Cats face short week, then Kent State

LEXINGTON, Ky. – The University of Kentucky football team hit the practice fields for the first time Tuesday since its season-opener, focusing on fine tuning things on both sides of the ball before opening up the home schedule on Saturday against Kent State at 7:30 p.m. ET.

Coach Joker Phillips talked after practice about a number of items following the season-opening game. Phillips was pleased with the offensive line’s play and UK’s potential play-making ability.

“Since the (Louisville) game, it’s obvious after looking at it that we have some talent on offense and some guys that can make plays,” Phillips said. “We were way too careless with the football, but our offensive line played as good as any offensive line that I have been around. Our quarterback was really sharp and so were our receivers. Bottom line, we just didn’t take care of the football.”

Kentucky, which normally has a small walk-through practice on Sundays and day off Monday following a Saturday game, did not have that chance to regroup Sunday due to the opener. The head coach said the team was not short on enthusiasm or energy in Tuesday’s practice. Phillips continues to emphasis a strong leadership presence in the locker room and good attitude on the field.

“It was easy today,” Phillips said about getting the players focused and energetic. “It is a long season and we still have a lot of games to be played. Today wasn’t hard at all. I think the attitude is good. I like the locker room. I just don’t like how we executed all the time on the field.”

A challenge for the Wildcats, especially with the short week, is to put the opener behind them and began focusing on the next opponent.

“We have a lot of work to do, obviously,” Phillips said. “This Kent State team coming in here is, I am sure, looking forward to coming in here. We have a lot of work to do and our guys are working hard at it.”

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