While people around the sports world are talking about and celebrating Orb’s victory in the Kentucky Derby Saturday, there’s sobering news coming out of the commonwealth regarding a member of its flagship university’s football program.
According to multiple media outlets, Kentucky safety Ashely Lowery was involved in an early-morning automobile accident Saturday in Georgia. Other than Lowery’s vehicle overturned and that he was thrown from it, there are no further details available regarding the one-car crash that occurred at 4:20 a.m. local time.
WKYT-TV reported that Lowery is in “critical but stable condition” at the Northeast Georgia Medical Center in Gainesville, Georgia. The extent and nature of Lowery’s injuries have yet to be released.
A UK football spokesperson told the Lexington Herald-Leader “I don’t have any details at this point,” adding “[w]e’re still in the process of gathering information.” New head coach Mark Stoops, who was in attendance at the Derby Saturday, is being kept apprised of the situation.
“Just need to keep praying” and “Everybody keep calm and keep praying for him” were sent out by current UK quarterback Maxwell Smith and former defensive back Martavius Neloms, respectively.
Ashley started eight games in 2012 as a true sophomore, finishing fifth on the team in tackles (43). He exited spring practice this year as the starter at one of the safety spots.
Our thoughts and prayers go out Lowery for a speedy recovery.
In the midst of reports that he had a physical altercation with one of his Tennessee players during summer camp this year, Butch Jones labeled the speculation “absolutely ridiculous.”
Apparently, his bosses agree with the head coach.
At a board meeting Thursday, UT-Knoxville chancellor Jimmy Cheek stated that he and athletic director Dave Hart had done their “due diligence” in investigating the accusations that Jones and senior offensive lineman Mack Crowder were involved in some type of physical skirmish during practice this past August. The end result of interviews with Jones, coaches and players was the conclusion that there was nothing to the reports and message-board rumors.
“There’s been a lot of rumor and misinformation on social media and message boards about an alleged incident during football practice,” Cheek said according to GoVols247.com‘s Wes Rucker. “It’s not our practice to respond to rumors, but I thought it was important to let you know that we’ve done our due diligence and Dave Hart and I are very confident there was no inappropriate conduct with any players or coaches.”
Shortly after Cheek spoke at the board meeting, Crowder took to Twitter with a series of missives that speaks around the issue.
Michigan played without its leading rusher in Week 5. The Wolverines are hoping there won’t be a repeat in Week 6.
De'Veon Smith sustained a lower-leg injury in the Week 4 win over BYU and didn’t travel with the team for last Saturday’s win over Maryland. Smith has been practicing with his teammates throughout the first few days of this week, and head coach Jim Harbaugh is guardedly optimistic that the running back will be available for what’s turned into a huge Big Ten matchup with Northwestern Saturday in the Big House.
“He’s practicing and I’m keeping my fingers crossed that he’s going to stay good and be ready to play,” Harbaugh said during a radio appearance Thursday morning. “But we’ll (keep) looking at that every day.”
Despite essentially missing a game and a half, Smith currently leads the Wolverines with 331 rushing yards and four rushing touchdowns. He’s added four receptions for 35 yards and a touchdown coming out of the backfield the first four games.
Should Smith be unable to go again, the Wolverines have three other backs with at least 100 yards on the ground: Ty Isaac (187, 7.2 yards per carry), Drake Johnson (125, 4.2 ypc) and Derrick Green (100, 3.3 ypc).
In addition to Smith, Harbaugh is hopeful Channing Stribling will be available this weekend as well. The starting cornerback didn’t play against the Cougars because of injury