Western Kentucky Hilltoppers

BOWLING GREEN, KY - DECEMBER 5:  Players of the WKU Hilltoppers celebrate with their fans after a game against the Southern Miss Golden Eagle at Houchens-Smith Stadium on December 5, 2015 in Bowling Green, Kentucky.  The Hilltoppers defeated the Golden Eagles 45-28.  (Photo by Wesley Hitt/Getty Images)
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WKU early enrollee Quinton Baker charged with drunk driving, pot possession

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Quinton Baker got an early start on his collegiate career a couple of months ago, and now, as it turned out, he’s gotten a headstart on his arrest résumé well.

The Bowling Green Daily News is reporting that Baker was arrested very early Sunday morning on multiple charges following a traffic stop. The Western Kentucky running back was officially charged with operating a motor vehicle under the influence of alcohol or drugs, possession of marijuana, possession of an open alcoholic beverage container in a motor vehicle, careless driving, instructional permit violations and failure to produce insurance card.

From the Daily News‘ report:

Baker submitted to (Modified Romberg Test) and during MRT he exhibited multiple clues (consistent) with marijuana use,” the officer wrote in the report. “During a search of the vehicle I located a zip lock bag with marijuana inside of it in the door panel of the driver’s door. There was also marijuana shake and residue throughout the vehicle and a 40oz open can of Bud Light Platinum was located in the back passenger floorboard.

The football program has yet to comment publicly on the situation.

The 5-8, 192-pound Baker was a three-star member of WKU’s 2016 recruiting class, rated as the No. 19 all-purpose back in the country according to 247Sports.com‘s composite rankings. Baker was an early enrollee, but missed time during spring practice because of a foot injury.

Wisconsin to open 2018 season vs. Western Kentucky

MADISON, WI - SEPTEMBER 27:  An overall of Camp Randall Stadium on September 27, 2014 in Madison, Wisconsin.  (Photo by Tom Lynn/Getty Images)
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For those clamoring for Wisconsin to open a season against a Conference USA school your wish has been granted.

UW announced in a press release that it will kick off the 2018 season against Western Kentucky.  The game will be played at Camp Randall Stadium Sept 1 of that year.

That game will mark the first-ever meeting between the two football programs.  It also wraps up the Badgers’ non-conference schedule for the next four years (2016-19).  UW had previously announced games against LSU (2016) and BYU (2017, 2018) during that same span.

In conjunction with the football announcement, the school also announced a home-and-home series in men’s basketball against WKU in 2017 and 2018.

Western Kentucky adds Wake grad transfer Steve Donatell

Steve Donatell
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Western Kentucky went into the 2016 offseason knowing it would need to replace four graduating tight ends, including Tyler Higbee, widely considered one of the top prospects at the position in the upcoming NFL draft.  Thanks in part to an addition from outside the program, the team has taken at least a small step toward helping to potentially replace the lost production.

In a conversation with the Bowling Green Daily News, Steve Donatell confirmed that he had decided to leave Wake Forest and transfer to WKU.  Donatell is coming to the Hilltoppers as a graduate transfer, which means he’ll b eligible to play right away for what will be his final season of eligibility.

Donatell’s father, Chicago Bears defensive backs coach Ed Donatell, was a defensive assistant at Pacific in the mid-eighties and one of the players on that side of the ball was Nick Holt, WKU’s defensive coordinator.  It was a couple of offensive-minded coaches, however, that sealed player’s transfer decision.

“Right away, talking to [tight ends] coach [Tony] Levine, he seemed like a good guy and a good coach,” Donatell told the Daily News. “Obviously with his past coaching experience, and then getting to know [head] coach [Jeff] Brohm, he was very impressive as well.”

Donatell began his career at Wake as a linebacker, starting the first three games of his redshirt freshman season at the position before a knee injury sidelined him for the remainder of 2013.  The 6-6, 230-pound senior moved to tight end in spring practice last year and caught three passes for 31 yards.

Western Kentucky RB Leon Allen receives medical hardship waiver, will play in ’16

Leon Allen
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All-Everything quarterback Brandon Doughty is gone, but Western Kentucky’s vaunted offense received a major boost on Tuesday. The Hilltoppers will be buoyed by a returning player that will function effectively as a highly-qualified newcomer this season.

Running back Leon Allen received a medical hardship waiver, clearing him to return in 2016 for a fifth tour of duty.

Allen has been a mainstay since arriving as a freshman in 2012, carrying 56 times for 317 yards and two scores that season, then again trailing Antonio Andrews as the ‘Tops second-leading rusher in 2013 with 72 carries for 357 yards and five scores.

With Andrews gone, Allen exploded in 2014, rushing 272 times for 1,542 yards and 13 touchdowns — good enough to rank in the top 20 nationally in carries and yards and in the top 30 in touchdowns. He also added 51 grabs for 476 yards and three more scores, making him one of seven players with at least 2,000 yards from scrimmage. Allen’s 345-yard effort against Army on Nov. 15, 2014 set a school and Conference USA record, and he followed that up with a 237-yard game to help WKU knock off an undefeated Marshall team in a 67-66 thriller.

Allen was primed for a huge 2015 season, with a spot on the Doak Walk Award Watch List and the Preseason All-C-USA team in hand, before he suffered a horrific knee injury cost him his season just two games in. He finished the season with just 27 carries for 137 yards and two touchdowns with five grabs for 72 yards.

And now, much to the rejoice of Jeff Brohm and company, he’ll be back in 2016.

Western Kentucky gets Brian Brohm’s coaching career started

Winnipeg Blue Bombers' quarterback Brian Brohm runs in a touchdown during second half CFL football action in against the Saskatchewan Roughriders in Regina, Saskatchewan on Sunday, Sept. 6, 2015. (Mark Taylor/The Canadian Press via AP) MANDATORY CREDIT
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Louisville legend Brian Brohm is heading back to Kentucky. Western Kentucky has added the former Cardinals quarterback to the coaching staff, the school announced Monday. Brohm will take on the role of quarterbacks coach with the Hilltoppers, his first coaching job. Of course, WKU head coach Jeff Brohm is the older brother to the new assistant coach. WKU Director of Football Operations Greg Brohm is also one of Brian Brohm’s older brothers.

Brian Brohm is now one of three former college quarterbacks on the staff for Western Kentucky. Both Brohm brothers on the coaching staff have quarterback experience, as does Bryan Ellis, who is being moved from coaching running backs to wide receivers.

Brohm was a former Conference USA Player of the Year in 2005 and Orange Bowl MVP in 2007 with Louisville. He later was a second-round NFL draft pick of the Green Bay Packers but the Packers had Aaron Rodger in place, so Brohm ended up on the practice squad. The Buffalo Bills signed Brohm in 2009 and he entered free agency at the end of the season. That took Brohm to the one-year experiment that was the United Football League with the Las Vegas Locomotives. Brohm then spent the past three seasons in the CFL with the Hamilton Tiger-Cats and Winnipeg Blue Bombers. Before getting to Louisville, Brohm was a three-time state champion at Trinity High School in Louisville, earning MVP honors in all three games. It goes without saying Brohm is a big name in the state of Louisville.

Perhaps returning home to his roots will be refreshing.