Recent Event Highlights: Clemson wins, Music City Bowl III, UT wins, again, Liberty = victory, Liberty Bowl bound, Music City Bowl II, and 41 more...
Created by Courierjournal on Jan 4, 2010
Last updated: 01/04/10 at 03:14 PM
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Brooks announces his decision to retire as coach at UK after seven seasons and a 39-47 record.
Clemson beats UK 21-13 in the Music City Bowl, snapping the Cats' 18-game winning streak against nonconference opponents and its three-game winning streak in bowl games. Afterward, Brooks tells his team he is “80 percent” sure he won't return to coach in 2010.
For the third time in four years, UK accepts an invitation to play in the Music City Bowl, where the Cats will face Clemson — the opponent in Brooks' first UK bowl appearance.
UK loses to Tennessee 24-20 at home. It's the Vols' 25th straight win against the Cats, the first for new coach Lane Kiffin.
Behind the running of Cobb and Locke, UK stuns Georgia 34-27 for its first win in Athens since 1977. For Brooks, the win comes in the same stadium where he made his head coaching debut with Oregon 32 years before. After the game, Brooks tells his team “I've been waiting a long time … and we finally got one back for the old man today
Kentucky wins 21-14 at Auburn, beating the Tigers there for the first time since 1966. The win improves UK to 3-3 on the season and breathes new life into the program.
Louisville makes the game closer than expected, but Derrick Locke's 100-yard kickoff return for a touchdown helps UK win its third-straight Governor's Cup trophy, 31-27. Brooks finishes his career 3-4 against UofL and 3-0 against Kragthorpe, who is fired at season's end.
UK beats Miami of Ohio 42-0 in Cincinnati to open Brooks' seventh season. It's the Cats' first shutout since 1996.
Speaking at SEC Media Days, Brooks says it's unlikely he'll meet a previously stated goal of becoming UK's longest-tenured head coach. He'd need to stay through the 2011 season to tie Fran Curci's record, but Brooks says in Birmingham, Ala., “I don't think that's going to happen.” It's his strongest indication yet that his coaching career is nearing an end.
The Cats rally from a 13-point halftime deficit to beat East Carolina 25-19 in the Liberty Bowl, Brooks' third straight bowl win.
UK accepts a bid to the Liberty Bowl in Memphis, Tenn., to play East Carolina, and Brooks becomes the first coach in UK history to lead the program to three consecutive bowl bids.
UK loses 28-10 at Tennessee to fall to 6-6 on the season. It's the sixth loss in as many tries for Brooks against the Volunteers.
A week after a 63-5 loss at Florida, Brooks replaces starting quarterback Mike Hartline with Randall Cobb, who leads UK to a 14-13 win at Mississippi State that clinches bowl eligibility for the third straight season.
Trailing by 13 points with fewer than five minutes to play, Kentucky rallies to a 21-20 win against Arkansas. It's Brooks' first win against the Razorbacks' first-year coach, Bobby Petrino.
With Louisville hosting, the annual Governor's Cup game moves back to the season's opening week. It doesn't bother Brooks' team, which routs the Cardinals 27-2.
At UK's annual media day, Brooks announces that quarterback Curtis Pulley, in contention to replace the departed Woodson as the Cats' starter, has been dismissed from the team for violating team rules. It leaves UK with no experience at the position heading into the season.
On the same day that Brooks receives a contract extension through 2011 and a raise to $1.6 million per year, UK names Phillips his eventual successor as head coach.
UK ends the year with a 35-28 win against Florida State at the Music City Bowl. Brooks becomes the first UK coach to win back-to-back bowl games since Paul “Bear” Bryant in 1951-52
For the second straight season, UK accepts an invitation to the Music City Bowl, this time to face Florida State. It marks the Cats' first back-to-back postseason trips since 1998-99.
Tennessee races out to a big early lead, then holds off UK 52-50 in four overtimes at Commonwealth Stadium. It's the Volunteers' 23rd straight win against UK, which drops to 7-5 on the season after a 6-1 start.
ESPN's College GameDay makes its first visit to Lexington as No.8 UK loses a shootout against No.15 Florida 45-37. It's the start of a rough patch for the Cats, who lose to Mississippi State on Oct. 27, then beat Vanderbilt on Nov. 10 and lose at Georgia on Nov. 17.
In what remains the biggest win of Brooks' tenure, No.17 UK stuns No.1 LSU 43-37 in three overtimes at Commonwealth Stadium. Steve Johnson catches the game-winning touchdown in the third overtime, and linebacker Braxton Kelley stuffs LSU running back Charles Scott on a fourth and 2 to seal the win against the eventual national champions.
Kentucky enters The Associated Press poll at No.21, the program's first ranking under Brooks and its first appearance in the AP Top 25 since the 1984 season. A week later, UK jumps to No.14 after a win at Arkansas.
New coach Steve Kragthorpe brings No.9 Louisville to Commonwealth Stadium for one of the most thrilling installments of the football rivalry. Woodson hits wide receiver Steve Johnson on a 57-yard touchdown pass with 28 seconds remaining in UK's 40-34 win, the Cats' first against a Top 10 team in 30 years.
After much public campaigning to move the Louisville game off the season's opening week, Brooks opens his fifth season against Eastern Kentucky at Commonwealth Stadium, and the Wildcats cruise to a 51-10 victory.
Brooks signs a new four-year contract with an option for a fifth year. Brooks' base pay is $1 million a year, plus incentives.
Mike Archer resigns as UK's defensive coordinator. Despite UK's bowl-winning season, Archer's defense is under fire as one of the worst in Division I football. Six days later, Brooks promotes secondary coach Steve Brown to defensive coordinator.
Behind Woodson's 299 yards and three touchdowns, UK beats heavily favored Clemson 28-20 at the Music City Bowl in Nashville. It's UK's first bowl win in 22 years
UK accepts an invitation to play Clemson in the Music City Bowl, the Cats' first postseason appearance since 1999
The Cats lose 17-12 at Tennessee when a potential go-ahead drive stalls inside the 5-yard line. After a delay of game penalty on second and goal at the 3-yard line, Woodson throws two incomplete passes, and UK comes up short in its upset bid.
Prior to a UK basketball game against Miami of Ohio, Barnhart says on the Big Blue Sports Network that the university intends to extend Brooks' contract. Brooks is in the fourth year of a five-year deal.
Woodson throws four touchdown passes — two to Keenan Burton — in UK's 38-26 win over Vanderbilt in Lexington. The win clinches bowl eligibility for the Cats, who beat Louisiana-Monroe 42-40 the next week for their fourth straight win and seventh of the season.
Tony Dixon's three-yard touchdown run with a minute remaining lifts UK to a 24-20 win against defending SEC champion Georgia in Lexington. Fans storm the field and tear down the goalposts after what is at the time the biggest win of Brooks' tenure. The win snaps a nine-game losing streak to Georgia and moves UK to 5-4 on the season — one win away from bowl eligibility.
In one of the most lopsided losses of the Brooks Era, LSU thumps the Cats 49-0 in Baton Rouge, La. UK drops to 3-4, and speculation increases that Brooks will be fired after the season.
Behind three touchdown passes from Woodson to Lyons, Kentucky beats Ole Miss 31-14 in Lexington. It's the first time in 19 years that the Cats have won their SEC opener
In the opening game of Brooks' fourth season, UK loses 59-28 at Louisville. It's the final UK-UofL game for Cards coach Bobby Petrino, who leaves after the season to become head coach of the NFL's Atlanta Falcons. In four meetings with Petrino, Brooks' team is 0-4 and never holds the lead in a game.
Brooks hires Randy Sanders, the former offensive coordinator at Tennessee, as UK's new quarterbacks coach. Sanders will be credited in large part for a dramatic turnaround in Woodson's career at quarterback.
Two days after the Tennessee loss, Micah Johnson, a linebacker from Fort Campbell, Ky., ranked among the nation's best high school players at the position, gives a verbal commitment to play for UK. In what's considered Brooks' biggest recruiting coup, Johnson chooses the Cats over Notre Dame and Georgia.
As speculation about the future of the football program increases, Barnhart announces that Brooks will be retained for the 2006 season. The next day, the Cats beat Vanderbilt 48-43, but they lose their final two games of the season to Georgia and Tennessee to finish 3-8, dropping Brooks' record at UK to 9-25.
In the season opener against heavily favored No. 12 Louisville, Brooks' team takes the game to the wire, losing 31-24 after Woodson's late fumble near the goal line on what could have been a game-tying score. Brooks falls to 0-3 against the Cardinals.
Joker Phillips, UK's wide receivers coach and recruiting coordinator, is named offensive coordinator, replacing embattled Ron Hudson, who had resigned Nov. 22.
A week after beating Vanderbilt, the Wildcats are competitive against Tennessee, losing 37-31 in Knoxville. The loss ends Brooks' second season with a 2-9 record, and through two seasons the coach is 2-14 against the Southeastern Conference.
A 62-17 loss at Georgia drops the Cats to 1-8 on the season, and bumper stickers imploring UK to “Ditch Mitch and Rich” become more prominent in Lexington.
There are boos at the game and criticism afterward as UK loses 28-16 to Ohio University at Commonwealth Stadium.
The Cats open Brooks' second season with a 28-0 loss at Louisville.
National signing day proves to be one of the most crucial days in the Brooks Era, as the Cats' 2004 class includes future standouts Wesley Woodyard, Trevard Lindley, Rafael Little, Dicky Lyons Jr., Marcus McClinton, Myron Pryor, Garry Williams and Johnny Williams.
Tennessee wins 20-7 in Lexington, ending Brooks' first season at UK on a four-game losing streak. The Cats finish 4-8 on the season.
In one of the most memorable losses of Brooks' tenure, Arkansas beats the Cats 71-63 in seven overtimes. UK falls to 4-5 on the season.
Kentucky leads Florida heading into the fourth quarter, but the Gators rally for a 24-21 win at Commonwealth Stadium. It's the first loss to Florida for Brooks, who finishes 0-7 against the Gators.
Brooks gets his first win at UK, beating Murray State 37-6 in Lexington.