Two more Cats dismissed from team by Stoops

jsmith3@herald-leader.comJuly 11, 2013 

Kadeem-Pancho Thomas

CHET WHITE

Sophomore linebacker Pancho Thomas and his younger brother Khalid Thomas, an incoming freshman running back, have both been dismissed from the University of Kentucky for a violation of team rules, a spokesman said Thursday morning.

Tony Neely was not more specific about the circumstances that led to the exits of the brothers from Tallahassee, Fla.

Lexington Police told the Herald-Leader that the players were cited for drug possession in the early-morning hours of July 6, although the citations had not been filed in Fayette District Court on Thursday.

Pancho Thomas was cited for possession of a controlled substance (mushrooms) and Khalid was cited for possession of marijuana, Lexington Police Lt. Chad Bacon said Thursday.

Officers approached an occupied vehicle at the UK Arboretum at 12:45 a.m., which is past operating hours, and "detected odor of marijuana from the vehicle," Bacon said. Officers searched the vehicle and its occupants. Both players were cited at the scene.

As a freshman, Pancho Thomas had 12 tackles in 10 games as a reserve middle linebacker and on special teams last season.

Khalid Thomas rushed 184 times for 1,471 yards and 15 touchdowns as a senior for Godby High School. He was ranked as the nation's No. 27 all-purpose back by 247Sports.com.

Theirs are the fourth and fifth dismissals for an unspecified "violation of team rules" since Coach Mark Stoops took over the program.

The Thomas brothers join sophomore offensive lineman T.J. Jones, who was asked to leave in mid-June, and cornerbacks Marcus Caffey and Jonathan Reed. They parted ways with UK in January.

Six other players have opted to transfer in the off-season under Stoops: defensive backs Sterling Wright and Shawn Blaylock, linebacker Demarius Rancifer as well as running back Justin Taylor and receivers DeMarcus Sweat and Bookie Cobbins.

As reported on Wednesday, junior safety Ashely Lowery remains with the team as he awaits a court date for his DUI citation related to his car accident in early May.

Fan Day festivities set

Kentucky fans will get another chance to put 50,000 into Commonwealth Stadium before a game is played there when UK hosts its annual Football Fan Day Aug. 9.

Gates open at 6 p.m. and festivities will include an autograph session, an open practice along with a fireworks show. Admission and parking are both free.

Posters and schedule cards will be given out at gates 1, 4, 9 and 12 at 5:30 p.m. for the autograph session on the main concourse. The signing will end at 7:15 and open practice will start at 7:30 p.m.

"After seeing the crowd and enthusiasm in Commonwealth Stadium for the Blue/White Game a few months ago, we are very anxious to get back in front of the Big Blue Nation," UK head coach Mark Stoops said in a release. "Fan Day is not only an opportunity for our players to interact with our great fans, but for us to get on the Commonwealth Stadium field and get some work in. We are very excited to get the players here for fall camp and get this season going."

UK's fall camp will open earlier in the week, with newcomers scheduled to report on Aug. 3 and Aug. 4.

Jennifer Smith: (859) 231-3241. Twitter: @jenheraldleader. Blog: ukfootball.bloginky.com.Staff Writer Taylor Harrison contributed to this report.

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