Brohm's focus clear heading into UK game

While fans and media are focused on Brian Brohm's surgically repaired knee heading into Sunday's Battle of the Bluegrass meeting between Louisville and Kentucky, Louisville's talented junior quarterback is worried about just one thing: Winning.

While fans and media are focused on Brian Brohm's surgically repaired knee heading into Sunday's Battle of the Bluegrass meeting between Louisville and Kentucky, Louisville's talented junior quarterback is worried about just one thing: Winning.

Brohm started ten games last season, leading the Cardinals to an 8-2 mark before suffering an injury against Syracuse that forced him to miss the final two games of the 2005 season. Before his injury, Brohm established himself as the best quarterback in the Big East, throwing for more than 2,800 yard with 19 touchdowns and only five interceptions. His 68.8 percent completion percentage ranked among the best in college football.

This weekend, Brohm will return to the field where he went down last November after a grueling off-season of rehabilitation.

"Right now I feel as good as I did at the end of last season," said Brohm, one of two Heisman Trophy contenders from U of L. "When you go through the rehab of a knee surgery it makes you appreciate the game a lot more and just being out there. I'm ready to go and I'm real excited about this first game."

Brohm sounds convincing when he says he's in top form with Kentucky coming into Papa John's Cardinal Stadium this weekend to kick off the 2006 season.

"My knee is fine," Brohm said. "It's 100 percent and I think it's going to hold up just fine. It's probably sturdier than it was before. It feels great."


Brian Brohm

Last year, Brohm made his first start on the road against the Wildcats, a 31-24 Louisville victory. And while the Cardinals jumped out to a 28-7 halftime lead in that game, Brohm and mates learned a valuable lesson after intermission.

"They always play hard," Brohm said of the Wildcats, who finished 3-8 last season. "We've just got to go out there and match their intensity and make sure that we're focused. Last year, we weren't as focused in the second half. We came out kind of flat in the second half and we didn't execute. We're definitely looking to have a great four quarters of football this time."

Behind Brohm, the Cards scored just three second half points against Kentucky last season. This time around, the 2005 Big East Offensive Player of the Year hopes to remedy last years lack of offensive production after the half.

"I didn't have a very good second half – I wasn't as sharp," Brohm said. "But that was my first start. I definitely got better as the season went on and I keep getting better. We can't let up ever. We have to go out there trying to score on every possession."

Having grown up around the Louisville-Kentucky rivalry, Brohm understands the importance of the annual game. And even though the Cardinals have dominated the series in recent years, winning the past three years and six of the last seven contests, Brohm would like nothing more than to knock off the Wildcats for a fourth straight year.

"We want to win this game pretty badly," Brohm said. "We put a lot of focus on it."


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