"It was a great thing that they asked me to do it," Walker said. "I felt really privileged to do it."
Turner said the more he sees of the team he's coaching this week, the more he's glad he took on the job.
"At first I was a little apprehensive because I didn't know what I was getting into, but the young men on the South team are excellent young men."
Twenty-one local players are participating
The South team includes nine players from Casey County, Garrard County and Lincoln County and another 26 from schools in Madison, Pulaski, Rockcastle and Russell counties. The North team features 12 players from Boyle County, Danville and Mercer County and 17 others from the schools in Harrison and Jessamine counties.
And even though neither coach has seen one of these all-star games before, they've gotten an idea of what to expect.
"My understanding is it's very competitive," Turner said.
And usually close. The North won the inaugural game on the final play in 2001, then won a lopsided decision in 2002. Last year's game, which ended in a tie, was also decided on the final play.
"Two out of three have been great games," Jerry Perry said.
"I just think it's going to be a lot of fun to go out there and see these guys play," Walker said. "But obviously we're going to play to win since the North has never lost this thing."
Perry, an assistant coach at Danville who has been a key figure in the Mid-State association from the start, said he's glad to have new coaches involved in the game.
"The biggest thing we're trying to do is get more coaches involved in the association," Perry said. "The more we can do that, the better off we'll be."
Walker and Turner are coaching different kinds of teams this week
The teams Walker and Turner coach on a regular basis are nothing like the teams they'll work with this week, and Walker said that's one of the best parts of this short-term job.
"It's having a really good athlete at every position, getting to put together a team that's good at every position and getting to watch them play," he said. "Plus I've enjoyed being around these other coaches. We learn from each other."
The teams hold daily practices for a week leading up to the game. The North is holding its workouts at Franklin and East Jessamine; the south at Madison Central.
East Jessamine, a team heavy with seniors last season, has nine players in the game, more than any other school. Danville has the most all-stars of any area school with five.
Turner said his South team is strongest on the lines - 17 North players are listed as linemen.
The North has 11 linemen and seven backs but also has three kickers, which is three more than the South.
Perry is pleased that the game has a new primary sponsor, Inter-County Energy.
"This is not the first time they've helped us, but this year we only really wanted one (sponsor)," Perry said. "The whole focus for us is just to play, and thanks to them we get to do it again."
If you want to go
Admission to the 6 p.m. game is $5. Perry advised fans to park in campus lots off Beatty Avenue.
If the game cannot be played Thursday due to inclement weather, it will not be rescheduled.
No. Name Pos. High School College Choice
1 Jesse Raney E Mercer County N/A
4 Dexter Gray B Danville Union
5 Brad King B Franklin County Undecided
7 Wes Coleman B East Jessamine Undecided
9 Zach Cooley E Boyle County Undecided
10 Brian O'Connor B West Jessamine Kentucky
14 Patrick Hunt QB East Jessamine Eastern Kentucky
22 John Keene B Western Hills Georgetown
24 Phillip Dunn B Danville Louisville
25 Hunter Barfield E East Jessamine Kentucky
30 Mario Berry E Danville Union
35 Jason Fox B East Jessamine Campbellsville
44 Tyler Toncray K Western Hills Undecided
45 Ian Loughry E Boyle County Undecided
51 Jeff Gaby LB Western Hills Georgetown
58 John Hendricks L George Rogers Clark Georgetown
59 John McCann L East Jessamine Georgetown
60 Shawn Jackson L Franklin County Kentucky State
62 Jeremy Enlow L Boyle County Eastern Kentucky
63 Ryan Hundley L Danville Cent. Ky. Technical
65 Jerrod Stump L East Jessamine Centre
67 Jason Chadwick K Mercer County Centre
69 Peter Thomas L Danville Undecided
70 Brian Williams L Danville Union
71 Evan Hayden L East Jessamine Morehead State
73 Cody Lowry L East Jessamine Kentucky