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From Walk-On Wide Receiver to Honorable Mention Defensive Back of the Week

Eric Idle once said, “Some things in life are bad. They can really make you mad  Other things just make you swear and curse.  When you’re chewing on life’s gristle.  Don’t grumble, give a whistle.  And this’ll help things turn out for the best.  And always look on the bright side of life.  Always look on the light side of life.”

So, let’s take that advice and look on the bright side of Kentucky’s loss to Missouri yesterday.  It won’t be easy, but I think there is something we can be proud of.  I think.

Kentucky freshman cornerback J.D. Harmon was named Honorable Mention Defensive Back of the Week by the College Football Performance Awards for gettin’ nasty in the UK secondary against Missouri. The walk-on from Paducah picked off consecutive passes to start the second half, making him the first Kentucky defensive back to intercept two passes in one game since Winston Guy in the 2011 season opener. Harmon also made seven tackles, two of which were run stops for no gain.

What makes Harmon’s big game even more impressive is that he is still settling into the cornerback position. Like many guys in Kentucky’s secondary, injuries forced Harmon into action as a true freshman, but he wasn’t even practicing with the defense until early August. The former Paducah Tilghman Blue Tornado walked on as a wide receiver and then switched to cornerback when Marcus Caffey was declared ineligible. Harmon doesn’t even have a biography in the 2012 UK Football media guide.

So, while you’re chewing on the gristle, try to give a whistle to J.D. Harmon for his breakout game. The future could be bright for the young man who was never expected to play. And oh yeah, he was his high school’s Homecoming King. Is there anything he can’t do

Article written by Drew Franklin

I can recite every line from Forrest Gump, blindfolded. Follow me on Twitter: @DrewFranklinKSR

14 Comments for From Walk-On Wide Receiver to Honorable Mention Defensive Back of the Week

  1. First
    8:05 pm October 28, 2012 Permalink


  2. Walkin on
    8:17 pm October 28, 2012 Permalink

    The UK media guide personnel and those that work are more incompetent than the UK coaching staff.

    Harmon amongst half the team have nothing in their biography on that site either. Maybe the UK media are not allowed at daily practices either. It all falls back as the responsiblity of UKs head coach to oversee all operations of his program.

    UK football is a poorly run operation and a poor product. More power to our players who have stuck out this year.

    8:26 pm October 28, 2012 Permalink

    You know what losers do???? They tend to look at the bright side….while the winners bang the Prom Queen!!!

  4. shields eyes
    8:39 pm October 28, 2012 Permalink

    Look I am not gay but this guy has probably got women hanging all over him.

  5. Mr. Blonde
    9:12 pm October 28, 2012 Permalink

    One of my favorite scenes in cinema history.

  6. Harmon fanatic
    9:20 pm October 28, 2012 Permalink

    Suggestion to Joker. I know you read this site. Play your walk-on quarterback this Saturday. You probably don’t know his name, but someone on the coaching staff will show you him at practice. Besides your punter, your scholarship players have had their chance and didn’t get it done.

  7. tyson
    9:26 pm October 28, 2012 Permalink

    Stories like this are great for the players, but they really make me question the coaching staff and the ability of them to evaluate talent.

  8. aengr
    9:37 pm October 28, 2012 Permalink

    Just another example of the current coaching staff’s inability to recognize or develop talent…….the coaches would probably say J.D. had no idea what he was doing…..or that he had not learned all the defensive schemes………J.D. was PLAYING football not thinking about how to play football. Remember “thinking can only hurt the team” and that goes for coaches too…….especially this group of goofballs…..

  9. Recruit me
    9:43 pm October 28, 2012 Permalink

    #7, how it works. The media is lazy and writes exageratted stories about scholarship guys who they know absolutely nothing about. The media attends no high school games or reviews any highlight films on players. Joker tells them some kind of bs. The media writes more about the guy. No one on the media had a clue who Harmon was until yesterday. Heck, neither did the UK coaching staff. Harmon came to UK, UK didn’t come to him. Absolutely the coaching staff has no ability to evaluate talent, and add is lazy on evaluating talent. Competitive schools don’t recruit like UK does (or should I say does not). UK recruiting is a 0 on a scale of 1 to 10.

    The Joker era ends in a month, I hope I am right!

  10. CatFanForLife
    10:46 pm October 28, 2012 Permalink

    As a proud Tilghman alum, I am happy to see two of our own doing well at UK. I have often said that there is talent at Tilghman, and all that’s needed is for someone to give them a look and a chance. Josh Forrest and J.D. Harmon are two of the top athletes on this team, and they are just starting to scratch the surface. What’s really amazing is that Joker and staff almost let Harmon get away, as he was deciding between Central Arkansas and UK. How this kid wasn’t offered a scholarship early on just boggles the mind. And yet, he somehow he decides to still walk on at UK? Another example how kids from the western part of the state are overlooked, yet are dying to show what they can do for their homestate school. And you have former Wildcat Randy Wyatt as his coach at Tilghman. Here’s a link to his highlight video form WPSD Channel 6 in Paducah

  11. CatFanForLife
    10:50 pm October 28, 2012 Permalink

    Correction..make that Arkansas State….

  12. Aja
    9:35 am October 29, 2012 Permalink

    UK offered Harmon. Harmon held back and did not commit until after UK filled its slots. Harmon thought he would get other SEC offers but none came. He is an outstanding athlete and also a state track and field jumps champion.

  13. Steve Fitts
    10:47 am October 29, 2012 Permalink

    “Always look on the bright side of life!” I think all UK football fans can relate to this scene from Monty Python!

  14. Paducah Patty
    11:40 am October 29, 2012 Permalink

    So proud of JD!! I teach in the system he attended and he is an outstanding young man on and off the field!!