Kentucky Sports

Amazon, Porsche, SEC professor: Ex-Cats succeeding in something other than sports.

Former UK quarterback Andre Woodson banged the “Big Blue Drum“ during a pregame ceremony before the Kentucky-Florida football game on Saturday.
Former UK quarterback Andre Woodson banged the “Big Blue Drum“ during a pregame ceremony before the Kentucky-Florida football game on Saturday.

The University of Kentucky has produced several exceptional professional athletes, including one inducted as part of its most recent Hall of Fame class.

DeMarcus Cousins, who was a key figure on John Calipari’s first team in Lexington, was one of six 2019 UK Athletics Hall of Fame inductees recognized for their accomplishments over the weekend. Cousins has earned more than $80,000,000 during an NBA career that’s so far spanned nine seasons.

The weekend’s other five inductees did not play in the NBA, but their post-college jobs are no less compelling:

Henri Junghänel: A rifleman who led UK to a national team championship in 2011 and won a gold medal in the 2016 Olympic games. Junghänel graduated with a master’s degree in mechanical engineering; after winning gold, he was contacted by Porsche to come work as an engineer. Does he drive one? “Not yet, I’m working on it,” Junghänel said with a laugh. “It’ll take a little bit more time.”

A’dia Mathies: The Louisville native was the 10th overall selection by the Los Angeles Sparks in 2013 WNBA Draft and played one season in the league before spending two years overseas. She for one season took over the girls’ basketball coaching job at Iroquois High School, her alma mater. Mathies currently is the administrative coordinator for Home of the Innocents, a Louisville-based non-profit that, according to its website provides “a safe haven for at-risk children; pediatric medical care; shelter and education for pregnant and parenting teens; crisis and intervention services; clinical treatment services and therapeutic loving foster and adoption services.”


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Vic Nelson: One of UK’s greatest track-and-field stars, Nelson is a professor and assistant head of the electrical and computer engineering department at Auburn University. He’s also been a track meet official at Auburn since 1979. Nelson for a time was the president of Auburn’s women’s basketball booster club, too, and served as “the official pace car” for the team. “When they came back from their summer break, they had to match certain times that they were expected to have gotten in shape for, so the coach had me go out and pace them for a number of years, which I’m sure endeared me to them,” Nelson said with a laugh.

Don Weber: Kentucky’s longtime cross country and track-and-field coach continues to serve the university as a meet manager.

Andre Woodson: The former Wildcats quarterback had a cup of coffee in the NFL but since 2014 has been a public relations specialist for e-commerce giant Amazon, No. 5 on the most recent Fortune 500 list.

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Josh Moore is in his first year covering the University of Kentucky football team and in his fifth year reporting for the Lexington Herald-Leader, where he’s been employed since 2009. Moore, a Martin County native, graduated from UK with a B.A. in Integrated Strategic Communication and English in 2013. He’s a huge fan of the NBA, Power Rangers and country music.