Category Archives: UK Football

Towles Named to Paul Hornung Award Weekly Honor Roll

Sophomore quarterback honored after career day rushing and passing against No. 1 Bulldogs

UK QB Patrick Towles - Photo by Tammie Brown - Camen Media
UK QB Patrick Towles – Photo by Tammie Brown – Camen Media

LEXINGTON, Ky. – After rushing for a career-high 76 yards and two rushing touchdowns and passing for a career-best 390 yards with two touchdowns through the air, University of Kentucky sophomore quarterback Patrick Towles has been named to the Paul Hornung Award Week Nine Honor Roll, it was announced Monday morning by the Louisville Sports Commission.

This is the first time Towles has been named to the honor roll, which honors student-athletes each week before giving out a season-end award to the most versatile player in major college football. Towles was named to the list along with Nebraska running back Ameer Abdullah and Utah State running back/linebacker Nick Vigil.

Towles had a career outing with 477 total yards in Kentucky’s loss to top-ranked Mississippi State. Towles was 24-of-43 passing for 390 yards with two touchdowns and connected with nine different receivers. He logged 76 yards on 23 attempts and a pair of scores on the ground, which included a career-long rush of 48 yards in the third quarter. He also caught one pass for 11 yards. Towles accounted for four plays of more than 40 yards, including a pair of touchdown tosses that went for 58 yards or longer.

The sophomore’s big game placed him in elite company as he became only the third quarterback in program history to pass for 365 yards or more three different times in the same season. The other two quarterbacks to claim that honor were Jared Lorenzen and All-American Tim Couch.

For the season, Towles is 163-for-271 for 2,077 yards and 12 touchdowns. Those numbers are the best for a UK quarterback since Mike Hartline in 2010. Led by Towles, Kentucky has posted 440+ yards of total offense in three games vs. Southeastern Conference foes this season for the first time since 2001. UK’s 253 points scored this season in just eight games is also more than it posted each of the last three seasons.

The season-end award is voted on by fans, who can vote as often as once every 24 hours for players who were on the preseason watch list or who have been named to a weekly honor roll. A finalist will be chosen in mid-November with fans then getting a chance to vote from a group of finalists.

For the latest on the Kentucky football team, follow @UKFootball on Twitter or University of Kentucky Football on Facebook.

Wildcats give #1 Mississippi St. all they can handle

Cats give Number 1 ranked Mississippi St. a scare in Lexington.

UK vs Miss. St - Photo by Tammie Brown - Camen Media
UK vs Miss. St – Photo by Tammie Brown – Camen Media

It did’t look good early for U.K. as Mississippi St, jumped out to an early 17-7 2nd quarter lead before finishing off a greatly improved Wildcat team 45-31. Heisman candidate Dak Prescott accounted for 3 scores as he threw for one score and ran for 2 more. UK QB ran for two touchdowns of his own and connected on two more for a 67 yard strike and a 58 yard bomb. Statistically, Towles far outshined Prescott, but in the end, it comes down to wins and losses, and Prescott has not lost this season. Towles rushed for 123 and passed for another 390, while Prescott ran for 104 and passed for 216. UK continues it is vastly improved and will be a force to reckon with in upcoming years.


Football Announces 2015 Schedule, Including 8 Home Games

UK football team to play eight home games at The New CWS in 2015


LEXINGTON, Ky. – The fall of 2015 will start a new chapter for the University of Kentucky football program with the opening of The New CWS, and fans can now start making plans for fall trips to Lexington as the Wildcats’ 2015 schedule, including eight home games, was released Tuesday night.


The challenging 2015 schedule includes non-conference home games against UL Lafayette, EKU, Charlotte and Louisville. Kentucky will play an eight-game Southeastern Conference schedule, facing SEC Eastern Division opponents Florida, Missouri and Tennessee at home and South Carolina, Georgia and Vanderbilt on the road. UK will host Auburn on a Thursday night in Lexington, before traveling to Mississippi State the following weekend to complete play against SEC Western Division opponents.


Kentucky will start its 2015 season at home on Sept. 5 against UL Lafayette, marking the second straight season UK has opened a season at home after neutral-site or true road game season openers the previous six seasons. The Wildcats start SEC play at Williams-Brice Stadium against South Carolina on Sept. 12, before returning to Lexington to start a four-game home stretch, including contests against Florida on Sept. 19 and Missouri on Sept. 26 to complete the month of September.


The Wildcats will leave conference play to start October, hosting in-state foe EKU on Oct. 3, before an open date on Oct. 10 and a Thursday home game vs. Auburn on Oct. 15. It will be Kentucky’s first-ever Thursday home game. Kentucky concludes the month of October by traveling to Mississippi State on Oct. 24 and hosting Tennessee on Oct. 31. It will be the earliest UK and UT have met since 1909.


UK starts November on the road, traveling to Georgia on Nov. 7 and Vanderbilt on Nov. 14. The VU game will conclude SEC action for the Wildcats as they play host to Charlotte on Nov. 21 and in-state rival Louisville on Nov. 28 to conclude regular-season play. It will be the first time UK has ended the regular season with consecutive non-conference games since joining the SEC in 1933.


For the 24th consecutive year, the 2015 regular season will culminate with the SEC Championship Game on Saturday, December 5 at the Georgia Dome in Atlanta.


The complete 2015 schedule and notes about the schedule are below.


For more information about UK football, follow @UKFootball on Twitter and Instagram, or like Kentucky Football on Facebook.


2015 Schedule Notes:

  • UK has eight home games in 2015, the most in a single season since UK also had eight in 2007.
  • It will be Kentucky’s first-ever meeting against UL Lafayette and Charlotte. Charlotte is currently a FCS Independent school, but will play its first season as an FBS team (Conference USA) in the fall of 2015.
  • For the second consecutive season, the UK-UofL game will be on the final weekend of the regular season. Prior to 2014, the UK-UofL game had been played early in the season since the series renewed in 1994. The 2015 game will be the 22nd straight year the two rivals have met.
  • Kentucky and Tennessee will face off in the month of October for the first time since 1909. It will only be the fourth time in UK’s 125-year history it has faced Tennessee in the month of October.
  • It will mark the 111th all-time meeting between Kentucky and Tennessee, the most for UK vs. any one opponent. The two teams have met annually since 1919, except for 1943, when Kentucky did not field a team.
  • Kentucky will start SEC play against South Carolina for the first time in program history. UK had opened SEC play each of the past six seasons against Florida.
  • The Wildcats will have a four-game home stretch from Sept. 19 to Oct. 15, marking the longest home stand since the 2001 team started the season with four straight home games.
  • UK’s open date will be Saturday, Oct. 10. UK has had two open dates each of the past two years.
  • Kentucky’s game against Auburn will be on Thursday, Oct. 15. It will be the first Thursday home game in program history. UK has played several Thursday road games over the past few seasons (2007 at South Carolina; 2011 vs. WKU in Nashville, Tenn.; 2013 at Mississippi State).
  • It will be Kentucky’s first meeting against Auburn since the Tigers’ National Championship season in 2010.
  • UK’s permanent SEC West opponent, Mississippi State is on the schedule for the 26th straight season.
  • Kentucky and EKU will meet for the first time since 2009. UK leads the series 3-0.
  • UK ends the regular season with consecutive non-conference games for the first time since it entered the SEC in 1933.


2015 Kentucky Football Schedule

Date                      Opponent                           2014 Record     2014 Ranking (as of Oct. 12)

Sept. 5                  UL LAFAYETTE                    2-3                    not ranked

Sept. 12                at South Carolina              3-3                    receiving votes in AP

Sept. 19                FLORIDA                              3-2                    not ranked

Sept. 26                MISSOURI                           4-2                    not ranked

Oct. 3                    EKU                                        6-0                    No. 12 in FCS Coaches’ Poll

Oct. 10                  Open date                          –                       –

Oct. 15 (Thu.)     AUBURN                              5-1                    No. 6 AP; No. 8 USA Today

Oct. 24                  at Mississippi State          6-0                    No. 1 AP; No. 1 USA Today

Oct. 31                  TENNESSEE                         3-3                    not ranked

Nov. 7                   at Georgia                           5-1                    No. 10 AP; No. 10 USA Today

Nov. 14                 at Vanderbilt                      2-5                    not ranked

Nov. 21                 CHARLOTTE                        3-4                    not ranked

Nov. 28                 LOUISVILLE                         5-2                    receiving votes in AP

Kentucky Black Magic Knocks out Gamecocks

By Ricky Blair – Could lightning actually strike twice?  In the case of Kentucky pulling off a big win while wearing their black jersey uniforms – the answer on Saturday was a resounding – Yes!

The last time the Wildcats wore the black jersey uniform, they ended a 26-game losing streak to the Tennessee Volunteers (2011) using a wide receiver with the #3 (Matt Roark) at quarterback.  Well, once again, it took a #3 lining up at quarterback to pull off the magic of a big win. This time it was running back Jo Jo Kemp who lined up as quarterback out of the ‘Wildcat’ formation, providing the offensive spurt that led to a 45-38 UK win over the visiting South Carolina Gamecocks.

Kemp rushed 17 times for 131 yards and three touchdowns on the night.  On this magical night – all five of Kentucky’s offensive touchdowns came out of the ‘Wildcat’ formation.  In addition to the three that Kemp scored, there was also a 38-yard touchdown run by Brandon Heard in the first half. Then, in the second half, Ryan Timmons pulled in a 48-yard touchdown pass from quarterback Patrick Towles after Kentucky ran a double reverse pitch back pass out of the formation.

The Wildcats’ determination came through as they overcame a 14-point deficit in both the first and second half.  South Carolina jumped out to an early 14-0 lead, but the Wildcats were able to even the score at 17 apiece going into the halftime intermission.

In the second half, the Wildcats took a seven point lead when Towles hit Timmons on the 48-yard pass play, but the Gamecocks came storming back with 21 unanswered points to go up by 14 points for a second time.

Just when it looked like the game may be over for the ‘Cats, they turned to Kemp and the ‘Wildcat’ formation to score back-to-back touchdowns and tie the game at 38 with 2:46 left in the contest.  However, unlike in times past where the home team fostered hope for Big Blue fans only to have it stripped away with a heartbreaking loss, this time the magic was on Kentucky’s side.  South Carolina’s pass attempt by quarterback Dylan Thompson was batted up in the air by UK senior defensive lineman Mike Douglas and intercepted by fellow senior defensive lineman Bud Dupree, who ran six yards for the game-winning touchdown.

Most of the season high 62,135 crowd stormed the field after the win in celebration of a truly amazing victory.  With that win, the Wildcats move to 4-1 on the season and 2-1 in the SEC.


The UK Wildcat football team is riding high after a hard fought victory over the South Carolina Gamecocks in Lexington. The Cats fought back on three different occasions to include trailing by 14 in the 4th quarter. JoJo Kemp nearly single handedly carried UK to their win. Kemp,

Why Not UK
Why Not UK

running the Wildcat offense, ran at will through the Gamecock defense. UK overcame a horrible call on a South Carolina fumble and a defense that allowed 500 yards in total offense and 282 yards rushing. South Carolina would go away from their running game when it mattered in the 4th quarter only to have UK intercept a SC pass for a pick 6 to take the lead for good. UK would intercept another pass in the waining moments of the game to seal the victory.

Kentucky is 4-1 and could easily be 5-0 if not for a missed call at Florida. It is still early on in the season, but the Wildcats have shown they have changed the atmosphere in Lexington in regards to their football program. Kentucky will now face UL Monroe before they start the true tough part of their schedule that includes 4 of their last 6 games on the road. Their remaining schedule has UK at #15 LSU, at Home against #12 Mississippi St., at #24 Missouri, home against #13 Georgia before traveling to Tennessee and at Louisville. Assuming UK can win next week at home against UL Monroe to go to 5-1, they would have to win at least one of their remaining 5 games to qualify for a bowl bid. Not bad for a team who hadn’t won an SEC game since 2011 and only won 2 games all of last year. Things are looking up for the Kentucky Wildcat football team and has fans throughout the State of Kentucky saying, WHY NOT KENTUCKY!!!

Kentucky gets 1st SEC win since 2011

By Ricky Blair

Not since 2011 had the Kentucky football team walked off the field with a win over a conference foe; but this past Saturday the Wildcats put that shameful streak to rest with a 17-7 victory over the Vanderbilt Commodores.

While this game wasn’t nearly as exciting as the last SEC victory – a game in which receiver-turned-quarterback Matt Roark was carried off the field by teammates and fans after leading the Wildcats to their first triumph over the Tennessee Volunteers in 26 years — it was none-the-less important for this coaching staff and young team as they try to turn a corner for this football program.

The Wildcats’ offense scored a touchdown on its first possession when quarterback Patrick Towles hit receiver Ryan Timmons on a 20-yard pass across the middle.  Timmons lost the ball, but it was ruled that he crossed the goal line before fumbling.  It was a close call for the Wildcats, who struggled for most of the game to move the football and to put points on the board.

Kentucky finished the first quarter up 7-0, but it wasn’t long before Vanderbilt took advantage of a Towles miscue. Towles threw a slant pass that was intercepted at UK’s own 10-yard line by Commodore cornerback Darrius Sims, who then trotted into the endzone for a touchdown. The Vanderbilt score tied the game at seven apiece.

In response, the Wildcats added a 44-yard Austin MacGinnis field goal, followed by a 12-play, 66-yard touchdown drive just seconds before halftime, which was capped by a 1-yard Towles run.

While the offense struggled for most of the day, the defense shined during this victory.  The defense was led by middle linebacker Josh Forrest, defensive end Bud Dupree, and cornerback J.D. Harmon, who each had five or more tackles.

The defense was also opportunistic, intercepting three passes in the game, which matches last year’s season total.  Marcus McWilson, Ashley Lowery and A.J. Stamps each had a take away during the fourth quarter to preserve the win.

Regarding the win, UK coach Mark Stoops said, “It was a thing of beauty.”

While it wasn’t always pretty to watch for most of the fans, at this point any conference win is a beautiful thing.