Brooks angered by retirement talk

ccosby@herald-leader.comNovember 24, 2009 

Kentucky Coach Rich Brooks angrily dismissed questions about his future at his weekly news conference on Monday, emphasizing that he didn't want any distractions leading up to the Tennessee game.

Brooks was asked by a reporter if Saturday's game would be his last home game as Kentucky's head coach, and he gave an initial response.

"As far as whether I'm coming back next year, I'm like that old Energizer bunny; I might need some batteries recharged, but we'll talk about that at the appropriate time," Brooks said.

But Brooks became irate when another reporter tried to follow up on the issue.

"You know what? I'm not going to answer anything about that anymore," Brooks said. "I'm going to talk about Tennessee. None of that junk. This is not the appropriate forum. We have a huge game with a lot at stake, and we'll address those issues at the appropriate time."

Brooks re-delivered that message at the conclusion of his news conference. He pointed out that he has three years remaining on his contract and that he planned to meet with administration at the end of the season to discuss the future. He also made reference to the Mississippi State game, when he felt a UK-planned 'Blackout' became a major distraction for his team, which ended up losing 31-24.

"One of the things that bothers me and has bothered me this year are distractions that take away from what we're looking at," he said. "I can go back no further than the Mississippi State game and the 'Blackout' game, which I knew nothing about. I don't want any distractions on us this week about, 'OK, is coach coming back? Is he not coming back? I have three years remaining on my contract and there's a clause in that contract that says in December they're supposed to tell me what they want to do moving forward, so we'll wait for all those things to happen. But I don't want this week to be about, 'What's he doing?' I want it about TENNESSEE!"

Maxwell earns SEC honor

Kentucky senior linebacker Sam Maxwell has been named the SEC Defensive Player of the Week for his performance in UK's 34-27 win over Georgia. Maxwell had 11 tackles and the game-clinching interception late in the fourth quarter.

Brooks Foundation event

The Rich Brooks Foundation will be hosting an event from 5-7 p.m. Friday at the Lorillard Building on Price Road. The cost is $60, which includes a chance to win the Rich Brooks F150 truck and two sideline passes for the UK-Tennessee game. Tickets can be purchased at the door or online at www.richbrooksfoundation.net.

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