Mark Stoops

Kentucky coach Mark Stoops had plenty of reason to smile after his National Signing Day haul on Wednesday.

LOUISVILLE, Ky. (WDRB) -- The University of Kentucky's football season will start a little sooner than expected.

Athletic Director Mitch Barnhart announced Tuesday that the Cats' season opener against Eastern Michigan will be played on Thursday, Sept. 3. That game was originally scheduled for Sept. 5.

The move clears the way for the 1463th running of the Kentucky Derby to have the day on Sept. 5. The Run for the Roses was rescheduled from the first Saturday in May, to the first Saturday in September due to the coronavirus pandemic.

Should things hold, it will be quite the sports week for fans in the Louisville area. Louisville, Kentucky and Western Kentucky open the football season with home games on Sept. 3. Indiana opens the season at Wisconsin on Oaks Day, Sept. 4. Finally, the 5th of September will be Derby Day in the Derby City.

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