After Thursday's scrimmage at the Nutter Training Center, Kentucky Coach Joker Phillips said redshirt freshman running back Brandon Gainer played well and could be a factor moving forward.
"He definitely showed today that he has some ability," Phillips said. "He's really physical. He played behind his pads. Sometimes he tries to play like he's a little back and he's not a little back. You can make people miss sometimes, but sometimes you've got to get behind your pads and fall forward. When he does that, he's pretty effective."
Gainer was a heralded recruit out of Florida when he signed last year. He redshirted in 2010, then was slowed by an elbow injury during training camp this year.
UK's leading rusher, Josh Clemons, underwent knee surgery Tuesday and is out for the season.
Phillips also said transfer quarterback Jacob Russell, who is sitting out this season, played well in the scrimmage. A star at Anderson County, Russell played at Eastern Kentucky before transferring to UK.
Tim Patterson, a true freshman linebacker out of Louisville, also earned Phillips' praise after the scrimmage.
As for the quarterback situation, Phillips made it clear he's sticking with Morgan Newton over Maxwell Smith.
The coach said backup quarterbacks are usually the most popular players on the team, but after throwing interceptions on his first two passes at South Carolina, Smith is "not as popular as he once was."