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All-UK Team: Claiborne to Stoops

For those that reference a Twitter timeline as a historical benchmark, I feel responsible to provide an objective Kentucky Football perspective. Social media has significantly skewed the definition of “great” and its first cousin, “best.” I thought it would be fun to dig into recent history and construct an All UK Team from 1983-2015 — or from the Jerry Claiborne era forward.



QB, Tim Couch: After being preposterously used as an option quarterback, Tim historically flourished under Hal Mumme.  Debatably Kentucky’s G.O.A.T.

WR, Randall Cobb: One question I’ll go to the grave asking, why in Hades did Cobb not get the ball against Tennessee?

WR, Craig Yeast: Made YAC (yards after catch) a cool late 90’s catch phrase. 

TE, Jacob Tamme: A fierce competitor, Cats haven’t had a TE since.

OT, Antonio Hall: The piano playing Renaissance man was a nasty Tackle between the chalks.

OT, Todd Perry: Prior to Larry Warford, Todd was the last Wildcat OL drafted for way too many years.  Was a long-time pro.

C, Jon Toth: One of two current players on the list, Toth was my 2014 Offensive MVP. 

OG, Dermontti Dawson: The Pro Football Hall of Famer is one of, if not the, greatest Center in NFL history.  But, Dawson actually played Guard at Kentucky.

OG, Larry Warford: NFL All Rookie team and one of the best in the business. 

FB, Andy Murray: Led the team and SEC in knock-down blocks.  To my knowledge, Murray is the only UK FB with a 100 yard rushing game.

RB, Moe Williams: 429 total yards against South Carolina.  299 yards rushing, 57 receiving, and 73 from kick-off returns. Have a day Moe.

RB, Mark Higgs: Electric RB with an remarkable highlight reel. Quick starting, long striding runner with surprising power.



DE, Bud Dupree: Bud had to be on the team, but at what position was the question. The current Steeler was the 22nd player selected in the 2015 NFL Draft.

DE, Dennis Johnson: One of only two nationally top ranked high school players to ever sign with the Wildcats.  Played his first varsity football game as a 2nd grader.

DL, Oliver Barnett: Ollie’s 26 year reign as UK’s all-time sack leader was threatened but not surpassed by Bud Dupree. 

DL, Jeremy Jarmon: Robbed of his last season, Jeremy’s personality was Karl Anthony Towns like but he was a relentless pass rusher on Saturdays.

DL, Corey Peters: Louisville Central star quickly developed into a run stopping DT with pass rush ability.  A rare and valuable combination.

LB, Chris Chenault: 482 tackles with a single game mark of 28 against Vanderbilt.

LB, Marty Moore: Moose was a beast. Every time I see Marty I try on his Super Bowl ring.

LB, Wesley Woodyard: Cerebral competitor, the Tennessee Titan can still be seen playing the game he dearly loves on Sundays. Arguably the best Wildcat leader in 30 years. 

CB, Trevard Lindley: Great hips and instinct that translated into game day interceptions. Will never forget the sunny Tuscaloosa afternoon match-up between Trevard Lindley and Julio Jones.

CB, David (DJ) Johnson: The Louisville Male product was a lock-down CB that enjoyed a successful NFL career.  Had crazy yet superb hair if you care to research.

S, Melvin Johnson: There have been hard hitting DB’s at UK and then there’s the face mask bending Melvin Johnson. Only scout team player I ever feared. Physical, brutal hitter.

S, Paul Calhoun: Third team All American Safety and Punter. Safe to say that feat may never be repeated.



K, Austin MacGinnis: Nearly broke all Kentucky kicking records, Austin will be called upon to keep the Cats in games this fall.    

P, Tim Masthay: Current Green Bay Packer was a much watch in warm-ups.  Clutch player.

KR, Derrick Abney: A threat to score on every return, Abney was a field position changer with TD threat.

So there you have my team.  I’m fairly certain some will agree, others won’t.  Would be interested in feedback.

Article written by Freddie Maggard

Former University of Kentucky Quarterback and Andy Griffith Fan Club President

37 Comments for All-UK Team: Claiborne to Stoops

  1. Carter
    8:12 pm June 29, 2015 Permalink

    My kicker has to be the former CAT and Bengal.

    • Carter
      8:17 pm June 29, 2015 Permalink

      Damn, I am telling my age. I just realized Pelphrey is old like me and you.

  2. Carter
    8:14 pm June 29, 2015 Permalink

    My center has to be Jason Watts.

  3. Kingseve
    8:28 pm June 29, 2015 Permalink

    Where is dewayne Robertson ?

  4. WildcatDWW
    8:30 pm June 29, 2015 Permalink

    What, no love for Dewayne Robertson on the D-Line? Wasn’t he like #6 in the first round?

  5. HaysC.
    8:59 pm June 29, 2015 Permalink

    I think Jeff Snedegar would have to make my list.

  6. UKPowerphone
    9:01 pm June 29, 2015 Permalink

    Couch was good but Jared Lorenzen was the Best. I saw him put his knee on the 50 and throw the ball through the uprights. DONE

    • UKnowMe
      9:47 pm June 29, 2015 Permalink

      He would also overthrow a 10 yard wheel route to a RB. Don’t get me wrong I prefer Lorenzen as a person, Couch was the better college QB.

  7. GKS
    9:10 pm June 29, 2015 Permalink

    The linebackers you have listed were great players. But they could not hold Jeff Snedegar’s jock strap and he played his junior and senior year with only one good shoulder.

    DeWayne Robertson was infinitely better than Jeremy Jarmon. No comparison.

    I think I would have found a spot for Marlon McCree on this list also.

    9:11 pm June 29, 2015 Permalink

    That’s a darn good list. There are a few two deep positions (like Dewayne Robertson mentioned above, et al.) but I can’t argue with any of these for long.

  9. Cats53
    9:17 pm June 29, 2015 Permalink

    No love for Jeff Kremer (83-87)? One of the best MLB’s Kentucky has seen. Top of several lists in tackling for season, all time, and single game. Have to have him over Chenault IMO..

  10. Catman4Life
    9:26 pm June 29, 2015 Permalink

    The only two things: I know John Conner is the best FB we’ve ever had. I think Jeff Snedegar should be here as MLB, but hard to argue your picks.

  11. fatbrat
    9:36 pm June 29, 2015 Permalink

    It’s not my all UK team but I hate to see RB George Adams left off this list. It’s also a crying shame that we could not land his son Jamal who went to LSU.

  12. thats budda
    9:42 pm June 29, 2015 Permalink

    I would have to take Artose Pinner over Higgs. Tough call

    • paul moore
      11:30 pm June 30, 2015 Permalink

      I’m a Atose fan, but u must not have see Higgs play at UK

  13. ronel1471
    9:43 pm June 29, 2015 Permalink

    No Art Still at DE? Are you crazy? Probably the best to ever play for UK at any position, with the exception of George Blanda. No Art Still? Are you kidding me!?!

    • fatbrat
      9:46 pm June 29, 2015 Permalink

      Still played for Curci in 77′

    • houndstooth
      10:01 pm June 29, 2015 Permalink

      Art Still played in 1977 and is not eligible for the list. What about Mike Pfeiffer at OT? I loved watching Tamme play TE but James Whalen probably had the best season as a TE at UK. Linebacker- Alot of good names mentioned and I would probably ad Randy Holleran to the mix. Overall, hard to argue with who he has on the list. Great article Mr. Maggard

  14. ronel1471
    9:46 pm June 29, 2015 Permalink

    OK…….OK. So maybe I didn’t fully read the question. My bad. Am I kidding me?!?

  15. ronel1471
    9:47 pm June 29, 2015 Permalink

    Thanks fatbrat. Had hoped to beat anyone to it once I actually read the parameters.

  16. fatbrat
    9:54 pm June 29, 2015 Permalink

    I would love to see an all UK team from Curci to Claiborne era. Guys like Art Still, Derick Ramsey, Sonny Collins, Warren Bryant, Paul Calhoun just to name a few.

    • houndstooth
      10:04 pm June 29, 2015 Permalink

      Curci might have the most players on the list if it was an all UK team.

  17. bandalumnus
    10:12 pm June 29, 2015 Permalink

    Would have to go with Artose Pinner at RB, John Conner at FB, Doug Pelphrey at K, and Danny Trevathan at LB. Trevathan was undoubtedly the best form tackler I’ve seen in the last 20 years. May also have to sneak Stevie Johnson in there over somebody, too. Or just add another receiver…

    • fatbrat
      10:23 pm June 29, 2015 Permalink

      I must agree that Johnson fits in the group at 1- 1A? If for no other reason his catch and run against the tards. He was a great WR for the Cats’.

  18. ridiculous
    10:26 pm June 29, 2015 Permalink

    Dennis Johnson was the most overrated player in the history of college football. It didn’t take long for the NFL to realize he couldn’t play a lick. Art Still was one of the best to put in the uniform. That comparison is like fly poop and pepper, not even close

    • Yup
      7:33 am June 30, 2015 Permalink

      I agree wholeheartedly. Opposing coaches knew exactly the same thing and consistently ran the football directly at (and over) Johnson.

      In many ways Johnson was ahead of his time: a talented but WAY overhyped athlete who never put in the work necessary to tap his potential.

  19. Freddie
    10:32 pm June 29, 2015 Permalink

    Who y’all got at offensive and defensive coordinators from that era? I’ll go with Terry Strock (Claiborne) and Mike Leach (Mumme)

    • fatbrat
      10:37 pm June 29, 2015 Permalink

      I am going to go out on a limb and say that Mumme was his own OC. Leach knew the offense but only suggested plays from the press box.

  20. NKYGuy4
    10:35 pm June 29, 2015 Permalink

    Heard of consensus All-American TE James Whalen? I love Tamme, but Whalen was huge in 99.

  21. Matt from Hodegenville
    7:05 am June 30, 2015 Permalink

    I would try to work Danny Trevathan in somewhere but I know LB is deep. Dewayne Robertson got snubbed though.

  22. Edward
    8:33 am June 30, 2015 Permalink

    Much fun to read Freddie. Why don’t you go back to the Bryant era and redo sometime in the future. It would be interesting to where Bob Gain, Groza, Tom Hutchinson and the Kentucky “Babe” might land. I certainly agree with you that if Cobb had gotten the call on the Tennessee goal line that game would have been “W” for UK.

  23. Cody
    8:35 am June 30, 2015 Permalink

    What about Vincent “Sweat Pea” Burns? I know he only played one year, but what a beast!

  24. Kyle
    8:40 am June 30, 2015 Permalink

    If you went with 3 WRs, would your third have been Keenan Burton?

    At first I was like how is he not on there, but when I scrolled up and saw you only had 2, I agreed with you. You have to have Cobb and Yeast on there.

  25. jim
    10:04 am June 30, 2015 Permalink

    Pretty nice list. Especially the O-Line. Dewayne Robertson would have to be on my list. He was the #4 overall pick in the NFL draft. That guy was a freak.

  26. Mickey
    11:08 am June 30, 2015 Permalink

    Melvin Johnson was great. We were in the same class, most of us redshirted (he was a smart dude–engineering major I believe, asked to be redshirted), and was a terror on the scout team that first year (and for a decade after). One day during the season, like a Tuesday practice, he knocked out cold one of our starting receivers who dared to come across the middle. OC Bowden went nuts on him, but he was just playing hard. Melvin just paced around with his arms out, crying, saying “what did I do? what did I do?” I do find it ironic that Freddie feared him, given the fact that he had zero chance of getting hit in practice.

  27. Eddie
    11:12 am June 30, 2015 Permalink

    Calhoun was a beast! Always a threat with the fake put. Still holds the record for longest punt!

  28. Mike
    8:00 am July 1, 2015 Permalink

    Whoa- is John Toth that good Freddie? Excellent