LEXINGTON, Ky. (AP) — Kentucky coach Joker Phillips says sophomore Maxwell Smith has been named starting quarterback.
Smith started three games as a freshman after junior Morgan Newton suffered a shoulder surgery, passing 84-of-153 2011 for 819 yards, four touchdowns and four interceptions. He was named to the coaches' freshman All-Southeastern Conference team.
Smith earned the job over Newton, who did not participate in spring practice due to offseason surgery to repair a torn labrum. Phillips said Monday that true freshmen Patrick Towles and Jalen Whitlow were also considered. Newton will be second string.
Phillips said Smith carried the momentum over from being the only quarterback of the four to have participated in spring practice, giving him an upper hand in the competition.
Kentucky's season opens Sept. 2 at Louisville.