UK football notes: Commonwealth to install synthetic turf in 2015

jsmith3@herald-leader.comJuly 17, 2014 

  • All-SEC teams

    FIRST TEAM

    OFFENSE

    Pos Name, school Points

    QB Nick Marshall, Auburn 241

    RB T.J. Yeldon, Alabama 281

    RB Todd Gurley, Georgia 280

    WR Amari Cooper, Alabama 282

    WR Sammie Coates, Auburn 207

    TE O.J. Howard, Alabama 188

    OL La'el Collins, LSU 231

    OL Arie Kouandjio, Alabama 188

    OL Laremy Tunsil, Mississippi 183

    OL Cedric Ogbuehi, Texas A&M 174

    C Reese Dismukes, Auburn 226

    DEFENSE

    DLRobert Nkemdiche, Mississippi239

    DL Dante Fowler Jr., Florida 212

    DL A'Shawn Robinson, Alabama 208

    DL Gabe Wright, Auburn 192

    LB Trey DePriest, Alabama 253

    LB A.J. Johnson, Tennessee 186

    LB Ramik Wilson, Georgia 147

    DB Landon Collins, Alabama 274

    DBVernon Hargreaves III, Florida243

    DB Cody Prewitt, Mississippi 210

    DB Deshazor Everett, Texas A&M 183

    SPECIAL TEAMS

    P Drew Kaser, Texas A&M 221

    PK Marshall Morgan, Georgia 224

    RS Christion Jones, Alabama 262

    AP Christion Jones, Alabama 130

    SECOND TEAM

    OFFENSE

    QB Dak Prescott, Miss. St. 118

    RB Mike Davis, So. Carolina 240

    RB Alex Collins, Arkansas 126

    WRLaquon Treadwell, Mississippi182

    WR Malcolm Mitchell, Georgia 71

    TE C.J. Uzomah, Auburn 141

    OL A.J. Cann, So. Carolina 166

    OL Vadal Alexander, LSU 112

    OL Alex Kozan, Auburn 112

    OLCorey Robinson, So. Carolina107

    C Ryan Kelly, Alabama 126

    DEFENSE

    DL Trey Flowers, Arkansas 181

    DL Chris Jones, Miss. St. 150

    DLAlvin "Bud" Dupree, Kentucky134

    DL Markus Golden, Missouri 125

    LBBenardrick McKinney, Miss. St.143

    LB Jordan Jenkins, Georgia 137

    LBDenzel Nkemdiche, Mississippi116

    DB Robenson Therezie, Auburn 144

    DB Tre'Davious White, LSU 141

    DB Damian Swann, Georgia 127

    DB Tony Conner, Mississippi 116

    SPECIAL TEAMS

    P Sam Irwin-Hill, Arkansas 136

    PK Colby Delahoussaye, LSU 142

    RS Andre Debose, Florida 97

    AP Terrence Magee, LSU 111

    THIRD TEAM

    OFFENSE

    QB Bo Wallace, Mississippi 94

    RB Corey Grant, Auburn 52

    RB Keith Marshall, Georgia 44

    WR Jameon Lewis, Miss. St. 67

    WR Marquez North, Tennessee 66

    TE Hunter Henry, Arkansas 72

    OL Austin Shepherd, Alabama 106

    OL Chad Slade, Auburn 101

    OL John Theus, Georgia 96

    OL Chaz Green, Florida 94

    C Evan Boehm, Missouri 77

    DEFENSE

    DL Ray Drew, Georgia 102

    DL Montravius Adams, Auburn 94

    DL Carl Lawson, Auburn 87

    DL Jermauria Rasco, LSU 79

    LB Kwon Alexander, LSU 112

    LB Cassanova McKinzy, Auburn 82

    LB Serderius Bryant, Mississippi 76

    DB Jon Mincy, Auburn 99

    DB Corey Thompson, LSU 86

    DB Rashard Robinson, LSU 84

    DB Brison Williams, So. Carolina 81

    SPECIAL TEAMS

    P Jamie Keehn, LSU 81

    PK Andrew Baggett, Missouri 103

    RS Marcus Murphy, Missouri 72

    AP Trey Williams, Texas A&M 89

  • SEC picks

    How the media that covers SEC football predicted the league champion and the order of finish in each division, with voting totals:

    SEC CHAMPION

    Alabama 154 LSU 9

    Auburn 75 Mississippi 2

    So. Carolina 32 Arkansas 1

    Georgia 19 Miss. State 1

    EASTERN DIVISION

    So. Carolina 1,895 Tennessee 893

    Georgia 1,777 Vanderbilt 619

    Florida 1,362Kentucky 395

    Missouri 1,263

    WESTERN DIVISION

    Alabama 1,915 Miss. State 890

    Auburn 1,735 Texas A&M 791

    Louisiana St.1,452 Arkansas 351

    Mississippi 1,069

HOOVER, Ala. — Commonwealth Stadium will be getting a head-to-turf renovation by the 2015 season.

At the annual Southeastern Conference Media Days, Coach Mark Stoops confirmed Kentucky's plan to move to a synthetic surface.

"It looks like we will go to turf after this season," he said Thursday. "They've got to come in and put a bunch of cranes on there and tear up the field anyway, and we've been thinking about it."

He said the current Bermuda grass playing surface installed in 2005 has been "disappointing."

"Our grounds crew does a phenomenal job, they work their tails off, they do an incredible job, but the fact of the matter is we can't get on that field very much," Stoops said.

Kentucky Athletics Director Mitch Barnhart hinted at the move away from grass while discussing the new football practice facility a few months ago.

He argued that it might be best for UK to install turf at the renovated stadium after a discussion with Stoops, who would like to start using that facility more to better prepare his teams to play there.

Turf requires less maintenance and suffers less wear and tear with the extra use.

"It might be in our best interest to be turf in the stadium, indoor turf and two grass practice fields," Barnhart said. "It gives us lots of options in terms of practice."

If Kentucky were to move to a turf surface, it would be one of just five SEC programs to do so. Other schools with synthetic surfaces are Arkansas, Mississippi, Missouri and Vanderbilt

The field at Florida State, where Stoops coached most recently, was Bermuda grass.

Preseason events still in works

Commonwealth Stadium construction isn't likely to cause any problems for the team during fall camp, but it has made planning pre-season events more complicated.

UK officials are still deciding how to handle the team's annual Fan Day, an open practice and autograph session, usually held in early August at the stadium.

There has been talk of moving it to the indoor practice facility, but nothing is set in stone.

"That's one of the things we're discussing," UK's Nathan Schwake told the Herald-Leader. "That place can get somewhat hot during the day. On an unseasonably warm day, like if it's 100, what can we do to make sure everybody is safe? Do we pass out water? Do we bring fans in there?"

The marketing staff has discussed moving it to another venue in town but could run into compliance problems and would like to stay on campus.

The Kentucky women's clinic, which is scheduled for July 26, opted to move away from the stadium this season and into the indoor practice facility to avoid conflicts.

There are still spots open for the event, which costs $75 per person, by calling (859) 257-3611 or online at ukathletics.com.

UK also is discussing an open house, possibly to coincide with the women's clinic, to give guided tours of the construction progress.

"We're trying to be as accommodating as we can be to people who want to check it out," Schwake said, adding that UK plans to make announcements soon.

Stoops did not seem to think the stadium construction was going to affect his practice schedule, which usually includes a couple of preseason scrimmages.

"I don't anticipate any change," he said. "When we need to get in there, we're going to be in the stadium."

Roster updates

In his first chat with the media of the season, Stoops gave a couple of roster updates:

■ Of freshman safety Mike Edwards, who tweeted recently that he was not enrolling in the fall because he is having shoulder surgery, the UK head coach said he hopes to get Edwards in January. Edwards is the only incoming freshman who is not on campus, the head coach said.

■ Junior-college linebacker Ryan Flannigan will be on campus and ready to go when UK starts camp in early August, Stoops said.

Dupree honored

Kentucky senior Alvin "Bud" Dupree was the only Wildcat to receive All-SEC recognition when the league's preseason teams were announced Thursday.

The teams were chosen by the media in attendance at SEC Media Days.

Dupree, a 6-foot-4, 267-pound defensive end from Irwinton, Ga., was named to the All-SEC second team.

Alabama, the media's choice to win the league championship, dominated the All-SEC first team with nine selections. Defending champion Auburn was next with four first-team choices, followed by Georgia, Mississippi and Texas A&M with three apiece.

Auburn led the league with 13 selections across all three All-SEC squads. The Tigers were followed by Alabama with 11, LSU with 10, Georgia with nine and Mississippi with eight.

Vanderbilt was the only school with no All-SEC selections.

Jennifer Smith: (859) 231-3241. Twitter: @jenheraldleader. Blog: ukfootball.bloginky.com.

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