Ex-Cats

‘Brutal.’ Another former Kentucky star suffers a torn ACL.

Kentucky’s Mark Stoops: ‘We’re not here to take steps backwards’

Kentucky head football coach Mark Stoops speaks to the media during Media Day on Friday, Aug. 2, 2019, at Kroger Field. Coming off a 10-3 year, UK opens the 2019 season on Aug. 31 against the Toledo Rockets.
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Kentucky head football coach Mark Stoops speaks to the media during Media Day on Friday, Aug. 2, 2019, at Kroger Field. Coming off a 10-3 year, UK opens the 2019 season on Aug. 31 against the Toledo Rockets.

Former University of Kentucky standout and New York Jets linebacker Avery Williamson will miss the entire 2019 NFL season after tearing an ACL during the Jets’ preseason game against the Atlanta Falcons on Thursday, becoming the second ex-Cat in as many days to suffer a significant knee injury.

Williamson’s right knee in the second quarter of Thursday’s game was on the receiving end of a diving tackle by teammate Tevaughn Campbell, who was trying to deflect a pass by Falcons quarterback Matt Ryan, according to the New York Post. An MRI on Friday morning confirmed that Williamson had suffered a torn ACL, NFL Network insider Ian Rapoport reported.

It was reported Thursday that NBA star DeMarcus Cousins, a former UK basketball player who signed a one-year deal with the Los Angeles Lakers, tore the ACL in his left knee during a workout earlier this week.

“Avery Williamson was calling plays for the defense and is one of their leaders,” Rapoport wrote on Twitter. “He walked out of the locker room last night… and learned his fate this morning. Brutal.”

Williamson, a former fifth-round pick who spent his first four seasons with the Tennessee Titans, is in the second year of a three-year, $22.5-million contract ($16 million guaranteed) with the Jets, who have a potential out following this season according to Spotrac.

In his first season in New York, Williamson led the team with 120 tackles in addition to three sacks and two forced fumbles.

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.
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