Kentucky football’s Josh Allen closes out a chapter
Kentucky defensive star Josh Allen added another trophy to his collection Monday.
The senior was named the winner of the 2018 Jack Lambert Award, which honors the top linebacker in college football and is chosen by the Touchdown Club of Columbus, Ohio.
Allen is the first Wildcat to receive the honor, which has been given since 1991.
Past winners include current NFL stars Khalil Mack, Luke Kuechly and Von Miller. Fort Campbell native E.J. Henderson, who played at Maryland and in the NFL with the Minnesota Vikings, won in 2002.
Allen will be presented with the award — named for Jack Lambert, Pittsburgh Steelers Hall of Famer and Kent State football legend — on Feb. 9 at the annual Touchdown Club of Columbus awards banquet.
It was the latest in a long list of national accolades for Allen, who is projected to be a first-round pick in the next NFL Draft. He has also won the Bronko Nagurski Award (National Defensive Player of the Year), the Chuck Bednarik Award (National Defensive Player of the Year), the Ronnie Lott IMPACT Trophy (National Defensive Player of the Year) and has been named a first-team All-American by the Walter Camp Football Foundation, Sports Illustrated, The Athletic, ESPN, Associated Press, College Football News, the Football Writers Association of America, Sporting News, USA Today, CBS, the American Football Coaches Association and Athlon Sports.
With 28.5 career sacks and 14 sacks in 2018, he now holds UK’s career and single-season records. Allen’s 11 career forced fumbles tie former Wildcats and current Chicago Bear Danny Trevathan for UK’s career mark. He has helped lead Kentucky to a 9-3 record, the program’s best regular-season record in 41 years.
Stoops sixth for national honor
Kentucky Coach Mark Stoops finished sixth in the voting for Associated Press Coach of the Year, which was won by Notre Dame’s Brian Kelly.
Stoops, who was named the Southeastern Conference’s coach of the year by both the media and coaches, received three first-place votes, five for second place and five for third. His total of 24 points only trailed Kelly (81), Alabama’s Nick Saban (66), UCF’s Josh Heupel (33), Washington State’s Mike Leach (26) and Syracuse’s Dino Babers (25).
Only Kelly (16), Saban (16), Heupel (5) and Babers (5) received more first-place votes. New Louisville coach Scott Satterfield, who led Appalachian State to a 10-2 record and a berth in the New Orleans Bowl, received one third-place vote.
No. 14 Kentucky vs. No. 12 Penn State
When: 1 p.m. Tuesday, Jan. 1
Where: Camping World Stadium in Orlando, Fla.