Kentucky sophomore tailback Derrick Locke got his first start of the season and was the offensive focal point against South Carolina, leading the offense in rushing and receiving.
Locke, who earlier this week spoke of UK's need to get the running game going, carried 15 times for 53 yards and tied his career-high with eight catches for 57 yards.
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Senior Tony Dixon, who had started the previous five games, had just one carry, a 2-yard TD run in the second quarter. No. 3 back Alfonso Smith carried just two times for four yards.
"We tried to get the ball in the hands of guys that have the speed to make big plays," UK Coach Rich Brooks said. "We just need to break more tackles and make bigger plays. Our offense is missing those 'explosion' plays."
Locke left the stadium without talking to reporters following the game.
In addition to losing its top receiver, Dicky Lyons Jr., to a knee injury in the second quarter, UK also lost receiver Kyrus Lanxter to a bruised shoulder, and tight end Maurice Grinter suffered a sprained ankle on UK's final offensive play.
Before leaving, Lyons had two catches for 12 yards and is now fifth on the all-time UK career receptions list with 139.
Johnson returns, shines
Junior middle linebacker Micah Johnson returned after missing two games with a high ankle sprain and recorded a team and career-high 12 tackles.
Special teams issues
The Wildcats had one of their worst efforts in the kicking game. Ryan Tydlacka had a 21-yard field goal blocked and returned by Captain Munnerlyn for an 81-yard touchdown early in the second quarter, and Munnerlyn had an 84-yard kickoff return to set up another score.
Moore makes big plays
Senior nickel back Shomari Moore had one of the better statistical games of his career, recording five tackles, a sack, a forced fumble and an interception. Moore now has four career interceptions and six career tackles for loss.