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Kentucky Offensive Line Recognized by Joe Moore Award

photo by Brendon D. Miller - Bluegrass Sports Nation

The unit has been named to midseason honor roll for the second consecutive season

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LEXINGTON, Ky. – The Kentucky offensive line has been named a member of the midseason honor roll for the Joe Moore Award, recognizing the Most Outstanding Offensive Line Unit in college football, it was announced Tuesday by The Foundation for Teamwork.

Three players have rushed for more than 300 yards (A.J. Rose, Lynn Bowden Jr., and Kavosiey Smoke) and the team is on pace for a fourth consecutive season of more than 2,000 rushing yards. The Wildcats have done this despite missing three departed starting linemen from a year ago, the school’s all-time leading rusher from last season, and this year’s top three quarterbacks are all injured – two are out for the season – and the current starting QB is a converted wide receiver.  The Wildcats’ running game is averaging a 192.3 yards per game, good for sixth in the Southeastern Conference.

What The Committee Is Saying: 

“You can tell this is a coachable bunch. They all do a very good job of working their feet into position to get blocks sealed and hand placement has clearly been drilled into them because they are good at it.”

The driving force behind the Big Blue Wall’s success is assistant coach John Schlarman. The former Wildcat was a four-year starter with the Wildcats from 1994-97 and is in his seventh season, in his current term, at his alma mater.

The UK offensive line also boasts three returning starters from last year in junior center Drake Jackson, senior left guard Logan Stenberg and redshirt junior left tackle Landon Young. In addition, senior Mason Wolfe, junior Luke Fortner, sophomores Darian Kinnard and Naasir Watkins, and redshirt freshmen Kenneth Horsey and Quintin Wilson make up the Big Blue Wall.

The semifinalists will be announced on Nov. 19 and finalists on Dec. 10. Selection of the 2019 Joe Moore Award winner will be made public after a surprise visit to the winning university’s campus in late December.

After the semifinalists and finalists have been selected, a vote will be held to select the 2019 recipient of the Joe Moore Award by a voting body of 200-plus members. This voting body includes all of the current offensive line coaches at the Division I/FBS level, as well as former players, coaches, colleagues of Coach Moore and select group of qualified media members.

The Joe Moore Award is named after Joe Moore, widely regarded as one of the best offensive line coaches in college football history, most notably for his work at Notre Dame and the University of Pittsburgh. Over 18 seasons, Coach Moore sent 52 players on to the NFL, including Bill Fralic, Mark May, Russ Grimm, Jimbo Covert and others. The Joe Moore Award trophy, crafted by legendary sports sculptor Jerry McKenna, is the largest trophy in college football, standing at a height of 6 feet and weighing in at 800 pounds. The perpetual trophy is made available for display by the winning university until the conclusion of the following college football season. 

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