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Kentucky Football Ticket Sales Booming… Yes, Football Tickets

need-tickets-signIf the crowd of 50,000 on hand for Kentucky’s spring game wasn’t enough to get your attention, check out these numbers:

First — 35,342.  Second — 21.4%

The first number represents how many football season tickets Kentucky has already sold for the 2013 football season.  The second number represents the expected increase in season-ticket sales over the 2012 season, Joker Phillips’ final year as the Wildcats’ coach.

When new coaches take over programs, there is usually a revival in interest in the program.  Indeed, Kentucky, Arkansas, Auburn and Tennessee — all with new coaches this season — all finished among the top five in SEC spring game attendance.  (Defending BCS champ Alabama also placed in the top five.)

Kentucky seems to be feeling more than just new-coach zeal, however.  Mark Stoops has certainly raised expectations and raised the Cats’ profile on the recruiting trail, but his choice of offensive coordinator has played just as big a role in renewed fan interest.

In December, Stoops named 33-year-old, ex-UK player Neal Brown as his coordinator and quarterbacks coach.  Brown is a proponent of the up-tempo, throw-it-all-over-the-yard style taught by the coaches he played under in Lexington — head coach Hal Mumme and assistants Mike Leach and Tony Franklin.  As a result, the UK athletics department has wisely taken advantage of the return of the “Air Raid offense” in every way imaginable, including in this Super Bowl ad trotted out in the Commowealth State this past February:


Judging by the season tickets sold to date, that air raid siren is being heard loud and clear by Wildcat fans.

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SEC Headlines 2/23/2013

headlines-satSEC Football

1. Georgia reserve tight end Ty Flournoy-Smith arrested Friday night. The misdemeanor charge involves a false report of stolen textbooks.  Authorities believe Flournoy-Smith sold the books himself. Mark Richt aware of arrest.

2. New offensive coordinator Cam Cameron’s contract at LSU calls for a $1 million buyout.

3. Former Texas A&M running back Christine Michael still doesn’t understand why he didn’t play in the Cotton Bowl against Oklahoma.  ”I had no clue that I wasn’t going to play not a down in that game. It was shocking to me, and it still shocks me to this day.”

4. With defensive coordinator Ellis Johnson’s 4-2-5 defense, Auburn wants big safeties: “We’re going to put one more body up there than you can block, and try to disrupt the blocking schemes instead of trying to physically overpower offensive linemen.”

5. Defensive end might be the deepest unit for Mississippi State this fall. Can five-star recruit Chris Jones start as a freshman?

6. Young defensive ends spark optimism at Ole Miss as well.

NFL Scouting Combine

7. Offensive lineman Chance Warmack on his time at Alabama: “It’s like a mini-NFL.” Why “Warmacking” may come to an end in the NFL.

8. Former Alabama tackle D.J. Fluker: “I want to be the Ray Lewis of my offensive line.”

9. Running back Eddie Lacy won’t run the 40-yard dash at the combine because of an ailing hamstring.

10. A school-record 13 players at the combine from LSU includes as many as four potential first-round picks.

SEC Basketball

11. A focus for Alabama today – stopping LSU’s Johnny O’Bryant.  Averaging 21.5 points and 10 rebounds over the last four games.

12. Another big man that’s found a groove is Vanderbilt’s Rod Odom – averaging 15.2 points last five games.

13. Tennessee’s shared history with Texas A&M – each program’s best player was Bernard King.

14. Mizzou point guard Phil Pressey has been a lightning rod for criticism.  Does his second-half performance against Florida mean he’s getting better?

15. John Calipari is not  a fan the late start time to tonight’s game against Missouri.  ”I hate it at 9 o’clock.” (Eastern time)

16. Despite losing 10-of-11, Auburn’s freshmen are optimistic about the future.  Shaq Johnson: ”I think the future looks bright for this program.”


17. Top two rivalries lost thanks to realignment have SEC ties.

18. Realignment Rumor Mill - MrSEC joins the panel discussion.


19. Former Kentucky coach Hal Mumme reportedly headed to SMU as offensive coordinator.

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