Been quite the week in the land of Big Blue Football. Co-Defensive Coordinator Derrick Ansley accepted a position as the defensive back coach at the University of Alabama. Ansley is from Tallassee, Alabama and spent his first seven coaching years in his home state. The first five were at Huntingdon College as his next two were spent in Tuscaloosa. While a graduate assistant and under the tutelage of Nick Saban, Alabama won a National Championship.
Derrick Ansley was the best teacher on Mark Stoops’ staff. Progressing from inherited talent to what today is considered a SEC top-five secondary based on youth and ability; Ansley’s tenure at UK can only be described as impactful and successful. By intention, I’ve praised his worth, recruiting, and coaching prowess. This opinion was formed by his group’s steady performance climb over the course of three seasons, positional evaluation and recruiting, but was solidified while filming a coaching show segment focusing on the Wildcat secondary. Said it before and will do so again now, Derrick Ansley will eventually become a defensive coordinator and head coach. With all the assistant coach departures during the Stoops’ era, this one stings the most. But, just as expected by players, Next Man Up.
Mark Stoops is defensive back subject matter expert. From playing DB at Iowa to coaching the position at the U, Florida State, Arizona, and Kentucky; Stoops knows and understands what it takes to lead his position of choice. Thus, of all the assistant coaches that have departed, I’m most confident in this Stoops’ replacement decision. Selling the position to potential candidates will not be a difficult. The secondary cupboard is filled with youthful talent. An up and comer, youthful coach will see the talented secondary as an instant resume builder. An experienced coach will recognize the situation as a turn-key meeting room.
Danny Trevathan is the most distinguished “La Familia” member.
From a Rivals 2-star prospect to 188th NFL draft selection, Danny Trevathan’s performance on America’s biggest athletic stage will forever be remembered in Wildcat lore. For the second consecutive year, a UK alumnus starred in the NFL title game. Danny tied a Super Bowl record with two fumble recoveries and led the Bronco’s with eight tackles. The World Champion and MVP candidate did not play out of character. His 109 regular season tackles led Denver as Trevathan cemented himself as the University of Kentucky’s most distinguished 2016 professional athlete.
#FINISH and the Super Bowl commercial.
In a busy week for Kentucky’s Athletic Department, its #FINISH Super Bowl commercial was well produced and applicable. Interpreted as a thank you and stick with us message to a loyal but tiring fan base, the production was spot on. From the Signing Day marathon to the Nike uniform and logo unveiling, Wildcat staffers have definitely burned the midnight oil. Regardless of your logo/uniform opinion, all three products were of high quality. This shows me that the ALL IN mantra is more than mere words. I find that incredibly refreshing. Now, it’s time to win games.