Mark Stoops

Kentucky is a basketball school, but committed to football success


On Friday the University of Kentucky approved plans for a new football practice facility at a cost of $45 million, which will eliminate much of the back-and-forth players and recruits need to do when it comes to campus life.

According to Herald-Leader, the plans for the new football facility will include a new two-story building with offices, locker rooms, team meeting rooms and training rooms as well as an academic center and study lounge. As it stands now, Kentucky football players have to go all over campus to take advantage of various university resources. At a school that is viewed as a basketball school, the push to improve the football facility is notable and helps Kentucky get on the same page as other football programs throughout the SEC and other rival programs such as Louisville.

“Now, recruits can pull up, park their car and we can show them where they’ll eat, where they’ll train, where they’ll study and it’s all going to be under one roof,” UK offensive coordinator Neal Brown told the Herald-Leader. “Recruiting has been positive without it, but it’s going to greatly enhance the product we’re selling.”

Kentucky just received the verbal commitment of massive defensive tackle Matt Elam, who chose Kentucky over Alabama. It was a major recruiting victory for Kentucky and head coach Mark Stoops. Without a dedication to improving the football program, would they have landed Elam? Stoops wasted little time in sparking some life in to the Kentucky football program. While it is still a major work in progress, the foundation for the potential future success of the program is evident.

Starting Navy S Kwazel Bertrand undergoes surgery, likely out for season

Kwazel Bertrand, Jacobi Owens
Associated Press
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Navy has seen one of its most productive players on the defensive side of the ball play for perhaps the final time this season.

Kwazel Bertrand sustained a broken ankle in the win over Air Force last Saturday, head coach Ken Niumatalolo confirmed earlier this week. As a result, the defensive back will very likely miss the remainder of the 2015 season.

And, because he is a senior and has no other eligibility avenues to pursue, it would effectively end his collegiate career as well.

“I feel terrible for Kwazel. It’s really unfortunate any time a senior goes down with a season-ending injury,” Niumatalolo said. “Kwazel has been a really good player for us and we’re going to miss his presence out on the field.”

Bertrand started 27 games over the past three-plus seasons, including all four in 2015.

Unitas Award whittles watch list in half down to 15

FORT WORTH, TX - OCTOBER 03:  Trevone Boykin #2 of the TCU Horned Frogs looks for an open receiver against the Texas Longhorns in the second quarter at Amon G. Carter Stadium on October 3, 2015 in Fort Worth, Texas.  (Photo by Tom Pennington/Getty Images)
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You know how I know we’re gradually creeping up on the end of another regular season?  Watch lists are being whittled.

The first major honor to do so is the Johnny Unitas Golden Arm Award, which is given out annually to the best quarterback who is a college senior or fourth-year junior.  The preseason watch list was 30 quarterbacks strong; the newest list has been cut in half to 15.

The most recent list includes one of the top Heisman contenders (TCU’s Trevone Boykin) and the top two nationally in passing yards (Bowling Green’s Matt Johnson, Western Kentucky’s Brandon Doughty), as well as a quarterback who’s closing in on the all-time FBS record for rushing touchdowns (Navy’s Keenan Reynolds).

The Pac-12 leads all conferences with three watch listers, followed by two each from the AAC, ACC and Big Ten.  The SEC has as many players (one, Mississippi State’s Dak Prescott) as the FCS (North Dakota State’s Carson Wentz).

Last year’s winner was Marcus Mariota of Oregon.

Trevone Boykin, TCU
Jacoby Brissett, NC State
Connor Cook, Michigan State
Brandon Doughty, WKU
Everett Golson, Florida State
Kevin Hogan, Stanford
Matt Johnson, Bowling Green
Cody Kessler, USC
Paxton Lynch, Memphis
Dak Prescott, Mississippi State
Keenan Reynolds, Navy
Nate Sudfeld, Indiana
Carson Wentz, N. Dakota State
Marquise Williams, North Carolina
Travis Wilson, Utah