Bowden, Duffy, Jackson, Stenberg, Taylor, Young earn conference and national awards
Written by UK staff
LEXINGTON, Ky. – Six Kentucky football players have added All-Southeastern Conference and All-America honors to their repertoire from USA Today, Phil Steele and Athlon Sports.
All-purpose player and junior Lynn Bowden Jr., and junior punter Max Duffy were named first-team All-Americans by all three selectors, while senior offensive guard Logan Stenberg was a second-team All-American by Phil Steele.
Phil Steele and Athlon also named All-SEC teams as Bowden, Duffy and Stenberg were featured on the first team. Junior center Drake Jackson was first team by Athlon and third team by Steele. Senior defensive end Calvin Taylor Jr. was on the third team by both selectors while junior offensive tackle Landon Young was a third-team All-SEC choice by Athlon.
Bowden, the winner of the Paul Hornung Award for the nation’s most versatile player, etched his name into program lore this season after injuries at quarterback forced him to return to the position for the first time since high school. All the junior did was set a school record for career and single-season rushing yards by a quarterback, break the SEC’s single-game rushing mark by a quarterback, turn in the second-highest single-game rushing total in UK history, highest single-season yards per rush attempt average and deliver at least 100 rushing yards in seven of his eight starts at quarterback (and miss an eighth by a single yard vs. Georgia). The Wildcats won six of his eight starts at quarterback while advancing to a fourth-straight bowl game and re-writing the school’s record books for rushing production.
The Youngstown, Ohio native averaged 7.9 yards per rushing attempt, breaking Stanley “Boom” Williams’ record of 7.1 per attempt in 2015. He finished with 4,660 all-purpose yards in his career, fifth in UK history and had 1,530 career rushing yards as a Wildcat, moving into 21st place on the UK career rushing list. He also ranks 13th on UK’s career receptions list with 114 and is 18th on the career receiving yards list with 1,303 yards. His 1,468 rushing yards this season is the second-highest single-season total in school history behind Moe Williams’ 1,600 in 1995.
Duffy, the Ray Guy Award winner for the nation’s top punter, is a native of Perth, Australia. He was an absolute weapon for the Wildcats this season, dominating the field position game with his booming and accurate leg. He is UK’s career punt leader with a 46.3-yard average and with his distance and placement, Kentucky led the nation in net punting with a 44.55-yard net average. Duffy led the nation in punting at 48.10 yards per punt.
Jackson (Versailles, Kentucky), Stenberg (Madison, Alabama) and Young (Lexington) were key members of the “Big Blue Wall” who helped Kentucky set new single-season school records of 3,624 rushing yards, 36 rushing touchdowns and a 6.3-yard average per rushing attempt.
Taylor, a native of Augusta, Georgia, finished the season with 8.5 sacks, ranking seventh in one season in school history. He also added 9.5 tackles for loss to go along with four pass breakups, three forced fumbles and two quarterback hurries. He was tied for sixth on the team with 36 overall tackles, including 21 solo.