A big thumbs up to Kentucky coach Rich Brooks and his staff for allowing state schools such as Western Kentucky, Eastern Kentucky and Murray State an opportunity to play against the Wildcats on the gridiron.
Sure the Hilltoppers will receive a hefty paycheck for their appearance Saturday, but for most of the players on the team’s roster, a chance to play a Southeastern Conference school such as Kentucky allows the players a chance to showcase their skills in front of a regional audience. It also gives the players — many of them from Kentucky — a chance to play a football game at Commonwealth Stadium.
Former George Rogers Clark standout Tristan Jones will be among the players on the field for the Toppers. Jones, a redshirt freshman, is a starting tight end, which is no surprise given the talent that Jones has and displayed during his prep career at Clark.
Even though Kentucky originally had Akron and Temple in the slot that now features Western, extending an opportunity to play the Hilltoppers was the right thing to do, considering the team is making the transition to big-time college football.
Western has already played game at Indiana and Alabama this season and will be a full-fledged member of the BCS this time next year and will compete in the Sun Belt Conference.
Kentucky has played Eastern Kentucky and Murray State since Brooks has been coach at the school. Eastern Kentucky will likely be back on the schedule in the next couple of years and look for another chance for the Racers to visit Commonwealth Stadium.
Brooks said earlier this week playing teams such as Western isn’t a risk, but knows his team still has to take care of business in order to avoid an missteps along the way.
Kicking update (courtesy of UK)
Junior Lones Seiber and redshirt freshman Ryan Tydlacka will share the extra point and field goal duties during the game vs. Western Kentucky University, Coach Rich Brooks announced following Thursday’s practice.
Game is Sold Out
The UK-WKU game is now a sellout. The Wildcats (3-0) play host to the Hilltoppers (2-2) on Saturday at 7 p.m. Fans without tickets can watch the game live in Lexington on WKYT and in Bowling Greenon WBKO. Fans across the nation, both inside and outside Kentucky (no blackouts), may purchase the game live via ESPN GamePlan.
On Saturday, fans interested in greeting the players when they arrive at the stadium should assemble at Gate One at 4:45 p.m. for the “Cat Walk.”