The UK Football Women’s Clinic is wrapping up, but before I head back to Nashville, I wanted to share some quick highlights, so I found a Diet Coke and a quiet corner in the Nutter Field House to write.
— This was my third women’s clinic, the first being during Joker’s tenure, and the second Mark Stoops’ first year. I’ll write a LOT more about this in the coming days, but I love how laid back and relaxed the event has become. The coaches’ families attend and their kids were on the field the whole time throwing the ball around with Patrick Towles, Alexander Montgomery, and the rest of the players that came out. It’s a much different atmosphere than the women’s basketball clinic, which has basically become a glorified autograph session. The coaches and players were easily accessible and more than willing to take pictures with attendees and show them drills. Heading into year three, the staff is truly at home in Lexington, and it shows.
— Not a lot of news came out of it, but one comment that stood out was from DB coach Derrick Ansley, who said safety Marcus McWilson is the most explosive player on the field right now. Defensive back has been a position in dire need of some talent, and Ansley sounded confident he’s finally got some, along with some veteran leadership. Very good news.
— No word on Nebraska transfer Courtney Love’s eligibility yet. Kudos to the lady who tried to get the scoop from DJ Eliot.
— The annual fashion show/player introductions was a little tamer this year than years past, but still fun. Check out the guys showing off some of the 70+ uniform combinations:
— This was my first time meeting Shannon Dawson, and I’m already a huge fan. As you might expect, he was a hit with the clinic, and when a woman asked what the staff was doing to try to stop Jordan Swindle’s false starts, he quipped, “electroshock therapy.” He got some laughs, but it was a little awkward since Swindle’s mother was in the audience.
Here’s Shannon Dawson and his adorable daughter Acelyn:
He carried her around like that the entire clinic.
— One of the most interesting parts of the clinic was Erik Korem’s talk about the new training center. I’ll have a lot more about this in the coming days, but Korem gave us some details I hadn’t heard until now. UK will be the only program in the country besides Oregon with turf training hills and the only in the nation with a 70 ft. plunge pool capable of holding up to 40 players at a time. I talked to Korem about this more in depth on the side, so I’ll have more details later.
— We got to walk out onto the field and look around, and although you’ve seen a million pics of it by now, I had to share a few more. The field is gorgeous, but HOT, much hotter than the old grass surface. Freddie Maggard explained how important the new turf is to the program in this Periscope:
— Finally, the best part of the clinic was when running backs coach Chad Scott ended his segment by telling the crowd, “Ladies, we’re going bowling!” and literally dropped the mic on the podium. I really wish I had video of it, but the crowd went wild.
The cleanup crews are ushering me out, so I better wrap this up. More later this weekend. Until then, enjoy this video of Freddie Maggard’s wife Jen (a Blackhawk helicopter pilot) rocking a tackling drill:
Freddie Maggard’s wife Jen taking over! pic.twitter.com/hwRHHgbbFT
– Tyler Thompson (@MrsTylerKSR) July 25, 2015