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UK Plays Host to Charleston Southern in Non-Conference Finale

After six consecutive Southeastern Conference games, Kentucky will take a break from league play when it plays host to Charleston Southern in the final non-conference game of the season.
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Television Update for Charleston Southern

The following is updated information for the live pay-per-view and delayed telecast for the Charleston Southern at Kentucky game on Saturday.
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Locke to dress

Kentucky
Content provided by Chip Cosby on UK football.

Kentucky senior tailback Derrick Locke will dress for Saturday’s game with Charleston Southern and it will be a game-time decision on whether he will play or not, UK Coach Joker Phillips said following Thursday’s practice. Locke has missed UK’s past three games with a shoulder injury.

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UK’s Locke Cleared By Doctors, But Phillips Should Sit Him

If he wants, Kentucky running back Derrick Locke can return to the football field this weekend.

After missing three games with a shoulder injury that was originally believed to be a stinger, Locke has been cleared by UK’s medical staff to play on Saturday.  He made it through practice yesterday.  And Joker Phillips is giving him the final say regarding his possible return.

“It’s up to him whether he feels like he can protect himself,” Phillips said in The Lexington Herald-Leader.  “He’s been cleared by the doctors.  He just doesn’t have the strength.  If he feels like he has the strength to protect himself, he’ll go.”

Phillips won’t consider resting Locke against Charleston Sourthern in order to make sure he’s available against Vanderbilt next week.

“If he can play, we’ve got to play Derrick Locke.  What are we going to save him for?  There’s no need to save him.  This is a game we’ve got to win.”

Okay.  Fine.  Locke made it through non-contract drills in practice yesterday.  The Wildcats need to beat Charleston Southern on Saturday.  I get it.  And doctors have cleared UK’s running back, too.

But earlier this week, Phillips said that Locke was still dealing with fatigue problems in his injured shoulder.  He had trouble gripping the football the more he used his arm.  Last week, Phillips revealed that Locke had lost feeling in his arm.  “It’s not just a stinger,” Phillips said.  “He hasn’t had any feeling back in three weeks, so it’s a little bit more than a stinger.”

Now maybe I’m just being a little namby-pamby on this one, but when you’re talking about nerve damage — and that’s what a run o’ the mill stinger is — Phillips might want to err on the side of caution.  For his player’s sake.  And this was not your average stinger, either.

After going three weeks without feeling in his arm, Locke should be held out for one more game.  Not even team doctors know how his shoulder will respond when Locke collides with another player.  Why not let that shoulder strengthen for another full week before putting him on the field?

The player — as players do — will likely try to give it a go on Saturday.  Therefore Phillips should take the decision out of the player’s hands.  UK’s coach should make it clear to everyone that he puts his players’ long-term health ahead of wins and losses. 

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SEC Headlines – 11/2/10 Part Two

1.  Urban Meyer and his program are feeling much better after Saturday’s win over Georgia.

2.  John Brantley and Trey Burton say they’re OK splitting time.

3.  Running back Jeff Demps is still bothered by sharp pain in his left foot.

4.  Meyer gave a game ball from the Georgia game to The Gainesville Sun’s Robbie Andreu… whose father passed away in October.

5.  Georgia is two wins away from a bowl trip… but they might go bowling even at 5-7.  (Still like the bowl system?)

6.  The two Tennessee bowls are eyeing the Bulldogs.

7.  Follow-up: Yep, Todd Grantham DID give the choke sign to Florida’s kicker.  Four times.

8.  Caleb King says his arrest on a traffic-related issue was “pretty much miscommunication.”

9.  Kentucky players want to extend the school’s bowl streak to five.

10.  The Wildcats can’t afford to lose their focus against Charleston Southern… or so they say.

11.  Brandon Knight led the basketball Cats past Pikeville College 97-66 in an exhibition game last night.

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David Turner News Conference Quotes and Video

Defensive line coach David Turner looks back on the Mississippi State game and ahead to the Charleston Southern game on Saturday.
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