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Sideline Chatter
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tastic program. They (construction crew) are coming along very well. And I would say, to what purpose it has there will be no better facility in the country." Overall, the building will consist of: weight, meeting, exercise, training, and equipment rooms. Also, there will be coaches and players' dressing rooms, racquetball courts, coaches and players' lounges and an interview room for the media. "Right now, we're hoping to be in that building by July," Claiborne said. "The reason why we would like to be in it by July is because that when our players come in we don't want to start at Shively Sports Center and then after a month or so move into another facility. So we're hoping that everything continues on schedule and that we will be able to get in there by the middle of July or at least by the end of July." . . .Last season, redshirt freshman Dee Smith came into his own. In '87 he caught 11 passes for 170 yards, netting an impressive 15.5 yards per carry average. This year he will be looked to as one of the Wildcats BIG play artists. "We think that he is a 'big play' type player," said Claiborne about the Paducah Tilghman product. "We think that Dee can not only can catch the ball but we're also hoping to get the ball to him on some reverses and get him in the backfield some. Last year we ran him from the backfield several times and he ran very well. With the year maturity he got from last season we think he'll be a lot more confident. We do hope he can give us some big plays this year.". . .Claiborne about the backfield situation. "That should be one of our strengths and we hope to utilize that this spring and hopefully next fall. If our backs can get in good enough shape that they can run the ball 20 or 30 times a game, stay healthy, and be able to play game after game after game then that should be one of our strengths this spring and certainly next fall.". . .If the backfield can remain free from injuries what should we expect out of the '87
group? "Well, it's hard to say," replied senior back Mark Higgs. "We're just trying to concentrate on spring ball. We're working on our open field moves so we can break some longer runs. That's what our running back coach (Greg Nord) has been talking to us about.". . .Senior linebacker Jeff Kremer about the Wildcats' winter workouts. "I think they went real well. It seems that people were excited and anxious; they worked real hard. It's something that I don't think I've really seen since I've been here. People just seemed like they knew what they had to dothey went in and worked hard, ran hard. They just knew what they had to do and got the job done." . . .Individually speaking, Kremer hopes to be a consistent performer in '87. "I'm not bragging but I think I can play just as good as anybody else in the country," he said. "But there are times when I slack off for a play or two. I've just got to be more consistent." As a team, he feels the defense is ready to send Kentucky to a winning campaign. "I'm excited. I'm not going to sit here and tell you that we're going to dominate or something like that. But I do think our defense will be one of our strong points. We ought to be able to go out and stop people." . . ..Kremer about Kentucky fans starting to criticize coach Claiborne following the Wildcats' 5-5-1 season. "I heard stuff last year. I think it's a bunch of bull. I don't see how they can grumble over what he's done with the program. He's definitely brought it up. but still people are complaining. I know they expect a bowl every year and stuff like that, but even the best teams sometimes don't go to a bowl. The atmosphere is definitely 100 percent better than it used be (before Claiborne took over at UK). We had two good years (1983, '84) and the last two have been down a little, but they weren't really bad years."
Dooley Getting A Chance To Prove Himself
Cincinnati Native Tops Quarterback List
For the last two years, Kevin Dooley has been the bridesmaid, so to speak, of the Wildcat football team. As the backup quarterback to Bill Ransdell. he had to stand in when UK's all-time leading passer was injured. Those days are now over. Ransdell has raduated. This year, Dooley wants the chance to become Kentucky's starting quarterback.
It's been that way during my career with Bill always there," Dooley said. "But right now. Bill Ransdell is not there anymore and I have a chance to do it myself. "'I realize I can play this year. This is it for me."
	Todd Hallum Cats' Pause Columnist
Please pardon Dooley if he says anything that might indicate he will be the starting signal caller for UK this season. He recognizes that the starting job will have to be earned on the practice field, not in the newspapers. Because of his previous game experience, though. Dooley has to be considered the frontrunner for the position. But he is also aware that he will have to win the job. and that Chuck Broughton. Billy Allen, Eric Green and junior college transfer Glenn Fohr will be out there trying to earn the spot as well.
"There's a lot of competition for the quarterback position," said Dooley, a senior from Cincinnati. "Right now I may be the first-string quarterback, but that's because I have the most game experience. Hopefully the competition among ourselves will have us pushing each other and will make us better football players."
As spring drills continue, Dooley is concentrating on preparing himself for the upcoming campaign. In the past, he's let little things affect his performance. Little things like worrying about what his teammates were doing instead of his own performance. But this year, he's changing that philosophy.
"It's a matter of not worrying about what other people are do-ng. but worrying about myself," Dooley said. "I think in the past that has bothered me. If I just worry about Kevin Dooley and do the job, then I'll be alright."
Dooley's claim to fame came two years ago when Ransdell punctured a lung on the first play from scrimmage against Clemson in a game played under the lights at Commonwealth Stadium. Thrust into a tough situation, Dooley came in and led the Wildcats to an impressive win over the Tigers, and then the following week, quarterbacked UK past Mississippi State. Those two games did give Dooley confidence, but this season will be an entirely different situation.
"That was the highlight of my career," Dooley says. "The reason I did so well at that time was I really didn't have time to think about what I was doing. It certainly will be different this year."
During UK's winter workouts, Dooley was determined that he was going to be in the best shape of his life heading into his senior season. By increasing both his strength and speed, Dooley earned the Outstanding Back Award, which goes out to the offensive back who performs the best in overall strength and agility tests. Because of his new strength and mobility, the UK coaches have included some option plays in this year's playbook.
"We have put in some option plays this spring," Dooley said, "but I don't know how much they will be used. I do know that I ran my fastest 40(-yard dash) in my life, and I think I can help the team running the football."
Because of his manueverability in the pocket, Dooley doesn't mind picking up the extra yards while scrambling from the pass rush. In fact, he says getting out in the open field immediately puts his mind into the game.
"It's mainly instinct," Dooley said, explaining his scrambling ability. "You don't think much about it. I like to run the ball because it gets you into the game. Once you receive that first hit you know you're in the game."
But it will be his passing ability that will come under the scrutiny of UK fans as the season unfolds. Last year he completed just eight of 24 attempts through the air for 77 yards, and he knows he will have to do much better for UK to compete in the tough SEC. That's why he subjected himself to a rigorous off-season program in the weight room. One that he says has paid off.
UK Notebook
Former UK basketball assistant Lake Kelly has taken his name
out of consideration for the head coaching job at South Alabama. Kelly guided Austin Peay to an Ohio Valley Conference tournament championship, along with an upset win over highly-ranked Illinois in the NCAA tournament this season. Kelly, who was a UK assistant under Joe Hall and also coached in the Kentucky prep ranks at Clark County, has become a hot commodity on the college coaching circuit as his name was also mentioned in connection with the vacant Morehead job. Austin Peay has reportedly given Kelly a new package deal amounting to approximately $100,000 per year. . .Another ex-Wildcat assistant made news when Boyd Grant was named the head coach at Colorado State. Grant, who made a name for himself by resurrecting the basketball program at Fresno State before resigning last year, was also an assistant under Hall. . .Our best wishes go out to former UK football assistant Charlie McCullers who recently suffered a heart attack in Del Ray. Fla. McCullers had been a color analyst for channel 27's UK football broadcasts prior to going into private business with his son in Florida. . .Two former UK football players are trying to earn their way into the NFL. Cam Jacobs was a fifth-round draft pick by the Pittsburgh Steelers and has signed a free agent
contract with the Tampa Bay Buccaneers. Meanwhile, ex-UK I receiver Rick Massie will attempt to make the Denver Bronco | club. . .Already injuries have started to mount in UK's spring football practice as 11 players had been sidelined as of last week. Converted defensive back Anthony Gardner will miss the rest of spring drills because he tore an anterior cruciate ligament in his knee. The injury occured when he twisted the knee while running on the turf at the Shively Center practice field. Redshirt freshman Chris Moga is out indefinitely after breaking his leg during practice. And both defensive guard Doug Houser and running back I Al Baker have cartilage tears in their knees, but only Houser will | require surgery, according to UK trainer Al Green.
SEC Notebook
Do you realize that the last seven times LSU has appeared in the NCAA basketball tournament, the Tigers have been eliminated by the eventual national champion five times? Appearenty beating Dale Brown's club brings out the best in opponents. Just ask Indiana which escaped with a one-point win over LSU in the finals of the Midwest Regional. . .In an effort to upgrade its basketball recruiting, Tennessee has hired former California State-Sacramento head coach Bill Brown as an assistant. Brown replaced | former Vol assistant Jack Fertig, who resigned after UT's disappointing 14-15 season. Brown has been an assistant at Kent State and Arkansas (under Eddie Sutton) and will specialize in recruiting for UT coach Don DeVoe. . .Speaking of DeVoe, Marshall head coach Rick Huckabay is making no secret that he'd | love to have the head job at Tennessee if it was to become available. Huckabay, who had finished his fourth season at the Southern Conference school, was quoted as saying, "I'd pay them" to coach at I UT. He also went on to say, "I'm happy at Marshall, but would love to move to a conference better known for its basketball." Huckabay also told the LSU student newspaper that he would like to succeed Dale Brown if he ever decided to step down as the head coach for the Tigers. Huckabay used to be an assistant for Brown at LSU. . .National football recruiting expert Max Emfinger has given high marks to Watson Brown at Vanderbilt and Johnny Majors at Tennessee for the schools' recruiting campaigns this year. Emfinger said Brown's class might be the best ever at Vandy. He I gave a high ranking to Commodore recruit and Kentucky native | Bobby Craycraft, who played his high school football at Boyd County. Emfinger also said Tennessee should get immediate help from junior college running back Keith Denson.