"You have to live in a vacuum not to hear about it all year long in this state. Any football fan ... you hear it on talk radio, see it on the message boards, see it in the public. You get constantly reminded which side of that equation you are on. Even the last two years when we were fortunate enough to win, that does not really count. This year is what counts," Brooks said Monday.
"Obviously this is an extremely important game. It is an in-state rivalry. It also is our home opening game. We need to keep our non-conference streak alive if at all possible and put us in better position as we go into league play next week. But this is a game both teams are going to want a great deal."
Brooks admits he's not out among UK fans often once the season starts. However, he knows fans get more excited for Louisville than most games.
"I don't think there is any question you get more buzz over a rival game than for any others. It's also hard to beat the buzz in some SEC games you have, but this is a huge game for a lot of reasons, and certainly the in-state supremacy, which we were on the bottom tier for my first four years and that's not a fun place to be," Brooks said.
Brooks even started his weekly press conference with a little zinger at media members who have preferred that Kentucky and Louisville play the first week of the season as the rivals do in years when the Cardinals host the game.
"Now it really does seem like football season has started. We've got the game you all want to see," Brooks said.