Wildcats enjoying new fields

LEXINGTON, Ky. -- The Kentucky football team had its first workouts of the 2005 season Saturday and Sunday on the new grass practice fields at the Nutter Training Facility.

Coach Rich Brooks used a split-squad format, with Group I (true freshmen and some redshirt freshmen) going for approximately two hours each day, while Group II (remainder of squad) worked out for two hours and 40 minutes each day.

The Wildcats are enjoying the new fields installed this summer.

"It feels like a game field," senior running back Arliss Beach said. "The grass is soft. It's easier to cut and make better moves."

"It's a huge difference," junior defensive end Durrell White said. "It's smooth and there's no crown. The grass is thicker and is nice and soft, with better traction."

A new full-size sports turf field is currently being installed as well and is expected to be ready soon. With the addition of special drainage systems on the grass fields and new stadium-style lights, the Wildcats will have a state-of-the-art practice facility when the work is completed. The entire project is a $2.1-million investment in Kentucky football.

"The fields are terrific," Brooks said. "It's soft and the footing is good. It drained really well when we had the hard rain this week. When the sports turf field is finished, it will be one of the top five practice facilities in the country."

The team will continue to practice in the split-squad format Monday and Tuesday before going to full-team practice on Wednesday.

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