UK Football

UK football puts two on AP All-America First Team for first time in 67 years

Benny Snell has his eye on UK rushing record

Kentucky football junior running back Benny Snell is 207 yards away from being the school's all-time leading rusher. Snell said he wants to just "let it happen" going into the regular season finale at Louisville on Saturday, Nov. 24, 2018.
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Kentucky football junior running back Benny Snell is 207 yards away from being the school's all-time leading rusher. Snell said he wants to just "let it happen" going into the regular season finale at Louisville on Saturday, Nov. 24, 2018.

For the first time since 1951, two University of Kentucky football players have been named to The Associated Press All-America First Team in the same season.

Right guard Bunchy Stallings and linebacker Josh Allen both were named to the team, announced Monday. They are the first Cats duo to earn the honors in the same season since quarterback Babe Parilli and center Doug Moseley were picked in 1951.

Stallings and Allen are the first UK players named to AP’s First Team since Randall Cobb was selected in 2010 as an all-purpose player. Before that, it was Derek Abney at kick returner in 2002.

Kentucky running back Benny Snell was named to this year’s All-America Third Team. The junior became the Cats’ all-time touchdown leader this season. Snell was second in the Southeastern Conference in rushing with 1,305 yards on 263 attempts after the regular season.

This is the latest in a long line of honors for Allen. The senior, who set UK career records for sacks in a career and season in 2018, brought home three trophies as the nation’s top defensive player this past week alone. His most recent was the Lott Impact Trophy presented late Sunday in California.

Allen
Breaking records was one of the many reasons Josh Allen returned to Kentucky this season. He broke UK’s career and single-season sacks records during the Wildcats’ Senior Day win over Middle Tennessee State. Silas Walker swalker@herald-leader.com

Allen, the consensus Defensive Player of the Year in the Southeastern Conference, has a league-best 14 quarterback sacks, 18.5 tackles for loss and five forced fumbles to go with his team-high 84 tackles. He broke the UK single-season and career sacks record (28.5) this season.

Stallings, also a senior, has been a central part of a Cats’ offensive line that has helped Snell to three consecutive 1,000-yard rushing seasons. UK ranked sixth in rushing this season in the SEC.

Snell, a junior, needs 107 yards to eclipse Sonny Collins as UK’s career rushing leader when the Wildcats play Penn State in the Citrus Bowl on Jan. 1.

Snell is UK’s first Third-Team All-American since The Associated Press named guard Larry Warford to that team in 2012.

Kentuckian honored

Purdue wide receiver Rondale Moore, a freshman from Trinity High School in Louisville, was named to the AP All-America First Team as an all-purpose player.

The 5-foot-9 Moore caught 103 passes for 1,164 yards and 12 touchdowns. He also rushed 18 times for 203 yards and a TD. Additionally, Moore returned 30 kickoffs for 599 yards and 11 punts for 82 yards.

Playoff teams come up big

The College Football Playoff semifinalists combined to place 10 players on the AP All-America First Team, including a high of four from No. 1 Alabama.

The Crimson Tide had six players chosen to the three All-America teams, more than any other school. No. 2 Clemson has three First-Teamers, No. 4 Oklahoma has two, including quarterback and Heisman Trophy winner Kyler Murray, and No. 3 Notre Dame had one.

The Tide and Sooners meet in the Orange Bowl on Dec. 29 and the Tigers play the Fighting Irish at the Cotton Bowl that day.

The playoff teams combined for 17 overall selections on the teams chosen by a panel of AP poll voters..

The Tide placed two players on each side of the ball, with Outland Trophy winner Quinnen Williams highlighting the defense. Receiver Jerry Jeudy, offensive tackle Jonah Williams and safety Deionte Thompson also made the First Team while Tua Tagovailoa was the Second Team quarterback.

Clemson placed defensive linemen Christian Wilkins and Clelin Ferrell on the First Team, and offensive tackle Mitch Hyatt. Cornerback Julian Love represented Notre Dame on the First Team.

The SEC led all conferences with 11 players named to the First Team. Next best was the ACC with five, followed by the Big Ten with three and the Big 12 with two.

The First Team included eight seniors, 12 juniors, three sophomores and two freshmen.

Associated Press All-America teams

FIRST TEAM

OFFENSE

Quarterback — Kyler Murray, junior, Oklahoma

Running backs — Jonathan Taylor, sophomore, Wisconsin; Darrell Henderson, junior, Memphis

Tackles — Jonah Williams, junior, Alabama; Mitch Hyatt, senior, Clemson

Guards — Beau Benzschawel, senior, Wisconsin; Bunchy Stallings, senior, Kentucky

Center— Garrett Bradbury, senior, North Carolina State

Tight end — Jace Sternberger, junior, Texas A&M

Wide receivers — Jerry Jeudy, sophomore, Alabama; Marquise Brown, junior, Oklahoma

All-purpose player Rondale Moore, freshman, Purdue

Place-kicker— Andre Szmyt, freshman, Syracuse

DEFENSE

Ends — Clelin Ferrell, junior, Clemson; Sutton Smith, junior, Northern Illinois

Tackles — Quinnen Williams, junior, Alabama; Christian Wilkins, senior, Clemson

Linebackers Josh Allen, senior, Kentucky; Devin White, junior, LSU; Ben Burr-Kirven, senior, Washington

Cornerbacks – Deandre Baker, senior, Georgia; Julian Love, junior, Notre Dame

Safeties – Grant Delpit, sophomore, LSU; Deionte Thompson, junior, Alabama

Punter – Braden Mann, junior, Texas A&M

SECOND TEAM

OFFENSE

Quarterback — Tua Tagovailoa, sophomore, Alabama

Running backs — Travis Etienne, sophomore, Clemson; Trayveon Williams, junior, Texas A&M

Tackles — Dalton Risner, senior, Kansas State; Andrew Thomas, sophomore, Georgia

Guards — Dru Samia, senior, Oklahoma; Michael Dieter, senior, Wisconsin

Center — Ross Pierschbacher, senior, Alabama

Tight end — T.J, Hockenson, sophomore, Iowa

Wide receivers — Tylan Wallace, sophomore, Oklahoma State; Andy Isabella, senior, Massachusetts

All-purpose player — Greg Dortch, sophomore, Wake Forest

Place-kicker — Cole Tracy, senior, LSU

DEFENSE

Ends — Montez Sweat, senior, Mississippi State; Jachai Polite, junior, Florida

Tackles — Jerry Tillery, senior, Notre Dame; Gerald Willis III, senior, Miami

Linebackers — Devin Bush, junior, Michigan; David Long Jr., junior, West Virginia; Joe Dineen, senior, Kansas

Cornerbacks — Greedy Williams, sophomore, LSU; Byron Murphy, sophomore, Washington

Safeties — Taylor Rapp, junior, Washington; Amani Hooker, junior, Iowa

Punter — Mitch Wishnowsky, senior, Utah

THIRD TEAM

OFFENSE

Quarterback — Dwayne Haskins, sophomore, Ohio State

Running backsBenny Snell, junior, Kentucky; Eno Benjamin, sophomore, Arizona State

Tackles — Andre Dillard, senior, Washington State; Cody Ford, junior, Oklahoma

Guards — Terrone Prescod, senior, North Carolina State; Chris Lindstrom, senior, Boston College

Center — Michael Jordan, junior, Ohio State

Tight end — Noah Fant, junior, Iowa

Wide Receivers — A.J. Brown, junior, Mississippi; David Sills V, senior, West Virginia

All-purpose player — J.J. Taylor, sophomore, Arizona

Place-kicker — Matt Gay, senior, Utah

DEFENSE

Ends — Chase Winovich, senior, Michigan; Jaylon Ferguson, senior, Louisiana Tech

Tackles — Jeffery Simmons, junior, Mississippi State; Ed Oliver, junior, Houston

Linebackers — Paddy Fisher, sophomore, Northwestern; David Woodward, sophomore, Utah State; Te’Von Coney, senior, Notre Dame

Cornerbacks — Hamp Cheevers, junior, Boston College; Lavert Hill, junior, Michigan

Safeties — Andre Cisco, freshman, Syracuse; Jonathan Abram, senior, Mississippi State

Punter — James Smith, sophomore, Cincinnati

SELECTION PANEL

Rob Asmussen, Champaign (Ill.) News-Gazette; Matt Baker, Tampa Bay (Fla.) Times; Michael Barber, Richmond (Va.) Times-Dispatch; Matt Brown, The Athletic; Robert Cessna, Bryan-College Station (Texas) Eagle; Rece Davis, ESPN; Pat Dooley, Gainesville (Fla.) Sun; Scott Hamilton, WECT-TV (Wilmington, N.C.); Eric Hansen, The South Bend (Ind.) Tribune; Brian Howell, Buffzone.com, Boulder (Colo.) Daily Camera; Rob Long, WJZ FM 105.7 The Fan Baltimore; Sean Manning, The Dominion Post (Morgantown, W.Va.); Conor O’Neill, Winston-Salem (N.C.) Journal; Soren Petro, 810 WHB Kansas City, Mo.; Keith Sargeant, NJ.Com/Star-Ledger; Jon Wilner, San Jose (Calif.) Mercury News.

Citrus Bowl

No. 14 Kentucky vs. No. 12 Penn State

When: 1 p.m. Tuesday, Jan. 1

Where: Camping World Stadium in Orlando, Fla.

TV: ABC-36

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