Drake Jackson named Rimington Trophy candidate

Trophy awarded to the nation’s most outstanding center

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LEXINGTON, Ky. (UK Athletics) – Senior Drake Jackson has been named a candidate for the 2020 Rimington Trophy, it was announced today by the Rimington Trophy Committee. This marks the second straight season Jackson has been a candidate for the prestigious award given annually to the nation’s most outstanding center.

The Versailles, Kentucky native has started in 36 consecutive career games as the anchor of Kentucky’s offensive line, the “Big Blue Wall.” In 212 plays this season, Jackson has totaled 18 knockdowns without allowing a sack or a quarterback pressure. UK currently leads the Southeastern Conference and ranks 19th nationally in rushing offense (212.3).

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In 2019, he had 44 knockdown blocks, missed only two assignments in 845 play and allowed only one sack in helping the Wildcats break single-season school records for rushing yards (3,624), rushing touchdowns (36) and yards per rushing attempt (6.32).

During the preseason, Jackson was named to the All-America Second Team by Athlon Sports and was a preseason first-team All-SEC selection by the media, Athlon Sports and Phil Steele. He is also a candidate for the Outland Trophy, given to the best college football interior lineman.

Jackson, who was elected one of UK’s 10 team captains this season, graduated in December of 2019 with a degree in agricultural economics and is currently working on a master’s degree in kinesiology and health promotion.

While more than a dozen All-America teams are selected annually, the Rimington Trophy committee uses these three prestigious teams to determine a winner:
• Walter Camp Foundation (WCF)
• Sporting News (SN)
• Football Writers Association of America (FWAA)

Because the selectors of these three All-America teams can place centers in a “mix” of offensive linemen that includes guards and tackles, their 11-man first teams can often have two centers. The Rimington Trophy committee’s policy is to count all players that play primarily the center position for their respective teams as centers, even though they may be listed as guards or tackles on the All- America teams.

The center with the most first team votes will be determined the winner. If there is a tie with first team votes, then the center with the most second team votes will win. If there is still a tie, the winner will be determined by a majority vote from the Rimington Trophy committee. Because of COVID-19 and the ever-changing guidelines of in-person events, details of the annual presentation will be announced when confirmed.

Dave Rimington, the award’s namesake, was a consensus first-team All-America center at the University of Nebraska in 1981 and 1982, during which time he became the Outland Trophy’s only two-time winner as the nation’s finest college interior lineman.

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Bryan Kennedy hails from the Bluegrass State. He was born and raised in Owensboro, KY where he graduated from Apollo High School in 2006. Bryan graduated from the University of Kentucky with a degree in Broadcast Journalism and a minor in Spanish in 2010. He also received his master's degree in Sports Media and Branding from Western Kentucky University. While at UK, Bryan was the general manager of the on-campus TV station. He also did sports reporting, anchoring, producing and even the weather for UK Student News Network. While working for UKSNN, he also had the pleasure of covering Coach John Calipari's first press conference when he was introduced as the new head coach of the Kentucky Wildcats; easily one of his favorite moments as a young sports reporter. Before coming to ABC 36, Bryan was a morning anchor and reporter at WXXV News 25, our sister station in Gulfport, MS. He anchored more than four hours of news every day, including morning shows on NBC and Fox. While down south, Bryan had the opportunity to cover the Sugar Bowl, New Orleans Saints and the New Orleans Pelicans. After spending a little more than two years at WXXV, Bryan is extremely excited to return home. In his spare time, Bryan enjoys playing sports, especially rugby. He also enjoys crossfitting and watching sports (obviously). He's extremely excited to cover Central Kentucky. Feel free to say hello and send story ideas toBKennedy@wtvq.com