KP: "It's basically up to me"

Sophomore safety Kenny Phillips has been rebounding from surgery on his thumb after missing the last three games.

After practice, Coach Coker announced that Kenny Phillips would be able to play if he felt good enough to.

Phillips wore a light soft fiberglass cast over his hand during practice. He was not restricted during defensive backs drills and caught the ball with his hands without hesitation.

"I have to wear a soft cast but it's basically up to me," Phillips said of his chances of playing in the game. "It depends on how I feel. The coaches aren't forcing me to do anything because they don't want me to really hurt it. Basically if I feel good I'll come in and out and basically rotate a little bit."

Despite missing nearly a quarter of the season with the injury, Phillips was recently named to the 2006 All-ACC second team. Phillips received the award for his play in the first nine games, in which he collected 48 total tackles and four interceptions.

"It's something I'm proud of, especially because I didn't finish the season. I missed like three or four games, and I guess the stuff I did before I got hurt was good enough to win the award."

Phillips and the rest of the defense will try to continue to play at a high level in the bowl game, and like many other players, insists that the team is in good spirits following a tumultuous season.

"The way we ended the last few games was kind of disappointing but we did beat Boston College in the final game so that was a pretty good way to end the season. We ended on a high note. So basically, right now we're still flying around and trying to be great."

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