What voters said about Kentucky Sportsman of the Year contenders who finished outside the top 10:
"Pitino still has the magic and led the Cardinals to a Final Four appearance."
— Les Dixon, The Times-Tribune, Corbin
"Took a mediocre regular-season team and led it to a Big East Conference Tournament title and the Final Four. Classic Pitino: Got his team to play well at the end of the season."
— Jonathan Miller, Kentucky.com
"... He won his first Olympic medal during an American record-setting performance by the silver-medal winning 400-meter relay team. He finished fourth in the fastest 100-meter final in Olympic history, one-hundredth of a second behind the bronze-medal winner. The fastest man in America is from Lexington ..."
— Marc Hardin, Kentucky Enquirer
"Best athlete in Kentucky (football, track, basketball). MVP in Army All-Star Game. Did you see his scoring play? He can fly!"
— Earl Cox, The Voice-Tribune, Louisville
"Set the state record for receptions and, on a team of good players, it was clear when Quick didn't play just how much of an impact he made on Trinity's team."
— Mary Jo Perino, WLEX-TV, Lexington
"Canaan almost single-handedly put Murray State back in the national eye with his play, which meant a first-round win in the NCAA tourney and even brought Dick Vitale to Murray. (Canaan is) an even better person off the court."
— Scott Brown, WKDZ radio, Cadiz
"This kid is a basketball player."
— Michael Edington, Lewis County Herald
"He has this season anywhere else, he is a Heisman candidate. WKU may have the most dynamic player in the country."
— Aaron Taylor, WTHX radio, Vine Grove/Elizabethtown
"Only a guy named Barry Sanders gained more (total) yards in a college football season (than Andrews)."
— Greg Busby, WSON radio, Henderson
"Mitchell has taken UK from the bottom of the league to an SEC title ... On top of that, women's basketball at Kentucky is just fun. If you can't have fun at a UK Hoops game, you can't have fun anywhere."
— John Herndon, The Anderson News, Lawrenceburg
"To win the SEC regular-season title is not an easy feat, yet Coach Mitchell did it and also guided his team to the Elite Eight of the NCAA tourney."
— Ron Bailey, The Ledger Independent, Maysville
"McCoughtry's Olympic and professional successes continue to place her at the top of her game."
— Mike Marsee, The Advocate-Messenger, Danville
"Gold medalist. Louisville's most amazing female athlete ever, McCoughtry was the offensive spark helping Team USA to the gold medal in the London Olympics. She was spectacular on the world's biggest stage for basketball."
— Howie Lindsey, CardinalSports.com
"Donahue embodies the perfect definition of the ideal sportsperson. Her impeccable work ethic took her from scoring as a freshman in the Sun Belt Conference in 2007-08 to qualifying for the United States Olympic team in 2012."
— Jordan Wells, Scout.com/FOXSports, Bowling Green
"How much did WKU's Google hits improve during Claire's stay in London-town?"
— Nathaniel Bryan, The News-Enterprise, Elizabethtown
"Coached the (Murray State) Racers to their best season ever."
— Fred Cowgill, WLKY TV, Louisville
"Helped the Racers gain statewide attention even as Kentucky and Louisville were enjoying similar runs down the stretch last season. A 31-2 record is not bad for a first-year coach at any level, especially in college basketball."
— Keith Taylor, The Winchester Sun
"Won't be at Murray State much longer with the numbers he's putting up."
— Ira Combs, Tri-State Sports Independent Media Service Inc., Hazard
"The ex-Murray State and University of Louisville runner won the Boston Marathon, for gosh sakes."
— Brian Rickerd, The State-Journal, Frankfort
"Because the Kentucky Sportsman of the Year should be about more than being a great athlete. Because the man won the biggest marathon in the world despite ‘not being good enough' to represent his home country (Kenya) in the Olympics. Because he took the time he would have been at the Olympics and saved an estimated 4,000 people in three weeks with his medical contributions. ... Wesley Korir should be what every athlete in the state of Kentucky aspires to be."
— Pat Doney, WDRB TV, Louisville
"Few people know what it takes to train high-class Thoroughbreds, the long hours, the sacrifice and determination. For years, (Romans) has been at the forefront of horse racing, all the while maintaining dignity and class."
— Mike Cameron, WLXG radio, Lexington
"In addition to all the wins on the racetrack, Romans reportedly lost 50 pounds this year with the help of (Rick) Pitino. Gotta admire that effort."
— Lachlan McLean, WHAS radio, Louisville
"He'll win (Sportsman of the Year) eventually, but he belongs on the list now."
— Kent Taylor, WAVE TV, Louisville
"Brought UK baseball back into the SEC mix. Say that slowly: UK baseball is in the mix in the SEC, traditionally dominated by warm-weather states."
— Gary Moyers, The Advocate-Messenger, Danville
"(Quigley took) SEC Player of the Year honors, finished second in the NCAA (tennis) Tournament and set the UK record for wins in a season and a career."
— Alex Risen, WTVQ TV, Lexington
"Just a phenomenal tennis star who owns the UK record book."
— Oscar Combs, University of Kentucky radio network
" ... he gets all the blame for the bad decisions, but not much credit for how good UK's overall athletics program has become. Serious investments in facilities and coaches."
— Jared Peck, Lexington Herald-Leader
"Former big-league pitcher takes a break from farming when his son's (high school) team needs a coach and leads them to (Woodford County's) first ever state baseball championship. The essence of sportsmanship, a Disney movie come to life."
— Kenny Rice, NBC Sports
"I don't know anything about fencing, but Lee Kiefer made me want to know more about it. Can't even imagine going from Dunbar (High School) to the Olympics."
— Ryan Lemond, WLAP radio, Lexington
"Reached the quarterfinals of the Olympics with her best years in front of her."
— Alan Cutler, WLEX TV, Lexington