BIRMINGHAM, Ala. — After a highly successful debut season, the ESPNU Thursday Night Southeastern Conference Game of the Week will return in 2012, with Kentucky to host defending league champion Florida on May 3, 2012 as part of the package, the conference office announced on Monday afternoon.

The Wildcats will host its first game as part of the ESPNU Thursday Night SEC Game of the Week package, also playing at LSU in the series in 2011. UK will open the series with Florida on Thursday, May 3 at 7:30 p.m. ET, concluding the series Friday and Saturday.

The 2012 ESPNU Thursday night package will kickoff on March 22 with a rematch of the 2011 national championship series between Florida and South Carolina in Columbia, S.C., at Carolina Stadium.

The complete SEC baseball television package will be announced at a later date. UK’s complete 2012 schedule will be released soon.

Kentucky returns several standouts in 2012, including first-team All-SEC third baseman Thomas McCarthy, who hit .411 in league play as a junior and led UK with a .378 average. In addition, slugging catchers Luke Maile and Michael Williams, standout outfielders Lucas Witt and Brian Adams, and middle infielder J.T. Riddle will help bolster the lineup. UK southpaws Corey Littrell and Taylor Rogers will team with standouts relievers Alex Phillips and Trevor Gott to help solidify a deep pitching staff.  

2012 SEC/ESPNU Thursday Night Baseball Schedule (Eastern Time)

March 22, 7:30 p.m. – Florida at South Carolina
April 5, 7:30 p.m. – LSU at Florida
April 12, 7:30 p.m. – Ole Miss at Georgia
April 19, 7:30 p.m. – Tennessee at Mississippi State
April 26, 7:30 p.m. – Alabama at South Carolina
May 3, 7:30 p.m. – Florida at Kentucky

May 10, 7:30 p.m. – Auburn at Arkansas
May 17, 7:30 p.m. – Ole Miss at Vanderbilt

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