WKYT | Lexington, Kentucky | Sports

Roark, McDermott named UK captains for Ole Miss game

LEXINGTON, Ky. – University of Kentucky senior wide receiver Matt Roark and senior defensive lineman Luke McDermott have been named game captains for Kentucky's Southeastern Conference battle with Ole Miss on Saturday at 3:30 p.m. ET inside Commonwealth Stadium.

Game captains are usually chosen on the basis of performance in the previous game. Roark had his best game as a Wildcat last week against Mississippi State, totaling a career high in catches with 13 and receiving yards with 116. Roark’s 13 receptions ranked him second on UK’s all-time single-game list, tying Randall Cobb (vs. Tennessee, Nov. 27, 2010). Roark’s 116 receiving yards was the most for Wildcats this season and the first time a UK wide receiver has eclipsed the 100-yard mark since La’Rod King against Central Michigan. Roark is second on the team in receiving this season with 25 catches for 172 yards and one touchdown.

McDermott has played well for this season, giving Kentucky depth on the defensive front behind Mister Cobble and Donte Rumph. The native of Louisville, Ky., posted two tackles against Mississippi State and has recorded a stop in seven of UK’s six games this season. Against Jacksonville State, McDermott grabbed a key interception late in the game that helped seal the Kentucky victory, his second career interception. In the season opener against Western Kentucky, McDermott tied a career high with four tackles while recording a sack en route to SEC Defensive Lineman of the Week honors.

Roark and McDermott will join permanent game captains Danny Trevathan and Stuart Hines at the pregame coin toss.

Cat Walk Set for 1:15 p.m.: Fans wishing to participate in the “Cat Walk,” cheering the Wildcats when they enter Commonwealth Stadium on Saturday, should be at Gate One of the stadium at 1:15 p.m.

Saturday is National College Football Day: Nearly 100 spectators gathered around a field in New Brunswick, N.J., on Nov. 6, 1869 to witness a game unlike anything seen before. The competition between Rutgers and Princeton was "replete with surprise, strategy, prodigies of determination and physical prowess," to use the words of one player. On that day 142 years ago, the Scarlet Knights defeated Princeton, 6-4, but more importantly, the players left a lasting legacy that would evolve into the great spectacle of intercollegiate football.

To honor the birth of an American institution, the AT&T Cotton Bowl Classic created “National College Football Day,” a holiday held annually on the first Saturday of November. This Saturday, Nov. 5, will be the eighth observance of College Football Day.

In addition to the Cotton Bowl, the event is sponsored by the Football Writers Association of America, the American Football Coaches Association, the College Sports Information Directors of America and the Athletic Equipment Managers Association.

Last Day to Vote for Lewellen: Friday is the final day for Kentucky fans to vote for Wildcat defensive end Jacob Lewellen for captain of the 2011 Good Works Team selected by the Allstate Insurance Company and the American Football Coaches Association.

Fans can vote through Nov. 4. Fans may vote for Jacob at this website,
The Team Captain and his fellow award recipients will be invited to New Orleans to take part in a special volunteer project leading up to the 2012 Allstate Sugar Bowl.

Lewellen, a native of Louisville, Ky., has been very involved in community service projects during his Kentucky career, leading the team in volunteer hours with over 90 hours (and counting) in giving back to the community.

He is the most active in “Athletes in Action,” an international Christian sports ministry organization where he serves as a Leadership Team Member. With AIA he leads two weekly Bible studies on campus - one for freshman football team members and one for all upperclassmen on campus. He also mentors freshman football players on a weekly basis and has spent his last two spring breaks in mission work, traveling to Nicaragua in the spring of 2010 and speaking to a youth detention center in Dayton Beach, Fla., in 2011.

During the summer, Lewellen spearheaded a group of UK athletes and staff members to pack bags on the back patio at the Nutter Training Center to take to Joplin, Mo., after the town was devastated by a tornado in July. Lewellen also got his football teammates to donate money to the cause, and together, he, his dad and teammate Max Godby drove to Joplin to help.

The three men went to a church in Joplin where they delivered 100 bags filled with toothpaste, toothbrushes, soap, shampoo, hand sanitizer, folders, pens, pencils, paper and bibles.

Lewellen's work to organize the donations and drive personally, to the town is just one example of his off-field resume. Lewellen has also been a guest speaker at local elementary schools, met with local veterans and befriended a three-year-old cancer patient at Lexington's Hope Lodge.

Parilli to Sign Books at Game Saturday: Vito “Babe” Parilli, one of the greatest quarterbacks in Kentucky history, will autograph copies of his new biography prior to Saturday’s game against Ole Miss.

Parilli and the book’s author, former Lexington Herald-Leader writer Dick Burdette, will be available for autographs Saturday from 1:30 to 3:30 p.m. at the Wildcat Refuge, located outside Gate 9 of Commonwealth Stadium.

Entitled “Kentucky Babe,” the book covers the life of the former Wildcat All-American. Parilli came to UK from Rochester, Pa. He played at UK from 1949-51, and along with Coach Paul “Bear” Bryant, led the Wildcats to the most successful three-year stint in Kentucky football history. Parilli guided the Wildcats to the Orange, Sugar and Cotton Bowl in successive seasons, posting 9-3, 11-1 and 8-4 records, respectively.

With Parilli at the helm, UK’s 1950 team upset Oklahoma in the Sugar Bowl on Jan. 1, 1951, ending the Sooners’ 31-game winning streak. During those days, the national polls were final after the regular season and did not take into account bowl game results, hence UK’s No. 7 ranking in The Associated Press and United Press International polls. However, UK is the 1950 national champion according to the Sagarin Computer Ratings, which includes bowl results in its calculations.

Parilli was first-team All-America as a junior and senior. He set every Kentucky record for passing and total offense, many of which were still standing until Tim Couch came along nearly a half-century later.

Parilli enjoyed a 15-year professional career with the Green Bay Packers and Cleveland Browns of the National Football League and the Oakland Raiders, Boston Patriots and New York Jets of the American Football League.

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