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Joker Says He's Built To Turn This Around

Posted: Sep 17, 2012 9:18 PM by Mary Jo Perino

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Two years and three games into his career as head coach, Joker Phillips is feeling more than just a little hot in his seat. After the loss to Western Kentucky, you could feel he had lost a majority of the fan base.

What happened to our bowl streak? How will we beat any SEC team this season? Those are questions True Blue Fans are asking of their team.

Joker believes he is still the man to fix the problem. He says he's the solution, because he's been there before.

"I'm built for this. I was 0-10-1," the UK coach said of his playing days under Jerry Claiborne. "All we talked about is stay together. We'll get it turned, stay together. 6-6, 9-3. I've been around some head coaches that I've got a chance to watch go through this. We're fine. I'm fine."

Claiborne did get that team turned around, but there are many questions about Joker's ability to do the same. He says the reason they turned that team around in the 1980's is the reason they can turn it around today.

"We got 72 freshmen and sophomores in this program. We just played a team that has 50 juniors and seniors in the program and I get that we got to be better than that, but we got a lot of good young players playing ball for us."

The question is, will Joker be around when those guys are juniors and seniors?