Liveblog: Kentucky football press luncheon

At Commonwealth Stadium for UK football’s weekly press luncheon:

  • Says CoShik Williams did not practice at end of last week, so Jonathan George was used. Phillips said George had been sharp in practice “so we gave him the reps.” Williams has a toe issue.
  • “Winning helps everything,” said Phillips.
  • “I think we’ve done a really good job of coaching quarterbacks around here, and we’ll get Morgan right also.”
  • Phillips says he doesn’t think going through this sort of situation is any different for a head coach or an assistant.
  • Asked how he is doing, Joker Phillips says, “I’m fine. I know what I signed up for.”
  • Says that Demarco Robinson’s 155 pounds against LSU’s defensive backs “they might have got us for child abuse.”
  • Says backup quarterback is “always the most popular guy in any organization.”
  • Phillips says Newton is close on things, “But we’re in a world where we want to be close now.”
  • Says “the guy who made a huge difference is Mike Hartline, and I know people don’t like to hear that.”
  • Asked about Ryan Mossakowski, Phillips says he is not going to talk about players who are not here.
  • Asked if lack of playmakers was a recruiting issue, Phillips mentions losing Randall Cobb early. “And our quarterback is not playing the way we expected him to play either.”
  • On Newton, “We’re not getting rid of the ball. You’ve got to get the ball out of your hand. We’ve given up 21 sacks. A lot of those are his.”
  • Phillips says Bookie Cobbins will practice at other positions this week “because we need some playmakers.” Says that after the week “we’ll make a decision if he’s good enough to help us.”
  • Says he thinks South Carolina offense is a little faster than LSU and “just as physical.”
  • On his defense at LSU, “I thought we played good enough to win.”
  • On South Carolina saying it will shake things up, Phillips said, “I hope they shake it up and don’t hand the ball to 21.”
  • Says he thinks South Carolina running back Marcus Lattimore is a Heisman candidate and if freshman could come out for NFL draft, Clowney would be a No. 1 pick.
  • Joker on injuries: Collins Ukwu will not play Saturday. Raymond Sanders did not have swelling from running yesterday.  He could practice Tuesday. Gene McCaskill is questionable for Saturday.
  • Asked how good his team is, Skinner says, “I’d love to go to Vegas if I knew that.” Says that right now Florida and Tennessee are the top two teams in the conference.
  • “Immediately after our Cincinnati match,” said Skinner about his team bouncing back after a slow start. He said he changed the way they practiced. Said became more intense in practice. “It was unacceptable effort,” in the Cincinnati match.
  • UK has three consecutive home volleyball matches — Oct. 7 vs. Ole Miss, Oct. 9 vs. Alabama and Oct. 12 vs. Tennessee.
  • Skinner: “Excited about what we’ve accomplished, being on the road for back-to-back weekends.”
  • UK volleyball coach Craig Skinner will talk to the media before Joker takes questions. Skinner’s squad is 14-3 overall and 5-1 in the SEC. UK has won 11 of its last 12 matches. The lone loss was to sixth-ranked Florida.
  • Players available for interview today were Winston Guy, Josh Clemons and Ronnie Sneed. Look for video on blog later.
  • Joker Phillips is scheduled to start taking questions at noon.
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