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Kentucky’s Barion Brown Selected to Paul Hornung Watch List

Photo by Brendon D. Miller - Bluegrass Sports Nation

The Hornung Award is given annually to the most versatile player in major college football

LEXINGTON – August 3, 2023

Kentucky sophomore wide receiver and return specialist Barion Brown has been selected to the watch list for the Paul Hornung Award Watch presented by Texas Roadhouse, the Louisville Sports Commission announced Thursday.

Brown, from Nashville, Tennessee, recorded a team-best 50 catches for a team-high 628 yards, averaging 12.6 yards per catch with four scores as a wide receiver. He concluded the season as the freshman record holder for most receiving yards in a season (628) and most pass receptions in a season (50).  He ranked fourth nationally and second in the SEC in kickoff return average (27.5) and 24th nationally and third in the SEC combined kick return yardage (440). He ranked fourth in the SEC in kickoff returns (16).

Earlier this year, he was named a preseason fourth-team All-American as a kick returner by Athlon Sports. He also was named to the All-SEC second team as a specialist and third-team offense as a wide receiver.

Finalists will be announced Nov. 15 and a winner will be determined on Dec. 6. The award’s annual award dinner will be held in Louisville, Kentucky in March of 2024.

Nicknamed The Golden Boy, Hornung was a Heisman Trophy-winning quarterback at Notre Dame in 1956 and the NFL’s Most Valuable Player with the Green Bay Packers whose versatility earned him enshrinement in both the College and Pro Football Hall of Fames.

Kentucky has a previous winner of the award when Lynn Bowden took home the trophy in the 2019 season.  Beginning that season as a wide receiver, he moved to quarterback when injuries hit that position early in the year.  Bowden played QB for the final eight games of the season, leading UK to a 6-2 record in those games, including a victory over N.C. State in the Belk Bowl.  He is believed to be the only player in college history to lead his team in rushing yardage, passing yardage and receiving yardage in the same season. 

The Wildcats begin the 2023 season begins Sept. 2 in Kroger Field against Ball State. The Wildcats’ first three games of the season will be at home (vs. EKU on Sept. 9 and vs. Akron on Sept. 16). UK’s SEC home opener will be Sept. 30 vs. Florida. 

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