Largest graduating class in UK Athletics history

114 Wildcats expected to graduate, including 11 with master’s degrees

LEXINGTON, Ky. (WTVQ/PRESS RELEASE) – A total of 114 current and former University of Kentucky student-athletes – the largest graduating class in school history – are on track to complete academic requirements this week or in the summer term, according to UK Athletics.

The graduates are part of will take part in the University’s Spring Commencement ceremonies Friday and Saturday in Rupp Arena at Central Bank Center. Adding the 21 student-athletes who graduated in December, UK Athletics is expected to have 135 graduates during the 2021-22 school year.

According to UK Athletics, included in the graduates are 11 Wildcats who are completing their master’s degrees – Davion Mintz from men’s basketball; Luke Fortner, Matt Ruffolo and Quintin Wilson from football; Jacob Cook and Zach Norris from men’s golf; Marissa Bosco from women’s soccer; Lauren Johnson from softball; Myles Anders and Kenroy Williams from men’s track and field; and Molly Leppelmeier from women’s track and field. Fortner will receive master’s degrees in two fields of study, aerospace engineering and business administration.

UK’s graduating class also has excelled in the arenas of competition. While at Kentucky, the graduates have been part of three NCAA Championships, nine conference championships and five conference tournament championships. A total of 17 grads have earned All-America honors while at Kentucky and 25 have gained all-conference recognition.

In the 2021-22 school year, this class has sparked UK Athletics to a current ranking of No. 8 in the nation (among 358 Division I schools) in the NACDA Directors’ Cup all-sports standings. The Wildcats are first among SEC schools in the Directors’ Cup.

“With the variety of issues in college athletics today, education and competitive excellence remain the heartbeat of what we do,” said Mitch Barnhart, UK Director of Athletics. “I am very proud of the 114 graduates who will take the next steps in their lives on the foundation of their time at Kentucky. We continue to emphasize the principle of students giving us four years and we will give them the next 40. In addition to academic achievement, their ability to balance excellence in the competitive arena shows the incredible discipline, intelligence and heart it takes to be a student-athlete at the highest level.”

According to UK Athletics, Wildcat fans will continue to see many of these graduates on their respective fields of play in 2022-23 as numerous student-athletes have remaining eligibility and will return to represent UK while attending graduate school or completing additional undergraduate certifications.

Below is the list of expected graduates:

Baseball

Oraj Anu

Tyler Bosma

Alex Degen

Adam Fogel

Sean Harney

Daniel Harris IV

Hunter Jump

Zack Lee

Kirk Liebert

Jacob Plastiak

Alonzo Rubalcaba

John Thrasher

Darren Williams

 

Men’s Basketball

Brennan Canada

Kellan Grady

Davion Mintz – master’s degree

Zan Payne

 

Women’s Basketball

Robyn Benton

Blair Green

Rhyne Howard

Jazmine Massengill

Olivia Owens

 

Football

Abule Abadi-Fitzgerald

Tyrell Ajian

Brenden Bates

Eli Cox

Darren Edmond

Braxton Eiserman

Luke Fortner – two master’s degrees

Will Nalty

Chris Rodriguez

Matt Ruffolo – master’s degree

Keaton Upshaw

Quintin Wilson – master’s degree

 

Men’s Golf

Jacob Cook – master’s degree

Jay Kirchdorfer

Zach Norris – master’s degree

 

Women’s Golf

Ryan Bender

Sarah Fite

Casey Ott

 

Gymnastics

Anna Haigis

Arianna Patterson

 

Rifle

Richard Clark

Mason Hamilton

Will Shaner

 

Men’s Soccer

Luke Andrews

Kalil ElMedkhar

Daniel Evans

Cole Guindon

Clay Holstad

Brock Lindow

Ryan Troutman

Mason Visconti

Ben Wendell

 

Women’s Soccer

Marissa Bosco – master’s degree

Bailey Locke

Sophie Manchin

Gretchen Mills

Mary Moffitt

Peyton Rimko

Sarah Siekkinen

 

Softball

Renee Abernathy

Jaci Babbs

Emma Boitnott

Lauren Johnson – master’s degree

Kayla Kowalik

 

STUNT

Jordan Marion

Jordan Redding

 

Men’s Swimming and Diving

Kyle Barker

Daniel Blake

Mason Wilby

 

Women’s Swimming and Diving

Emily Baeth

Caitlin Brooks

Riley Gaines

Izzy Gati

Parker Herren

Kyndal Knight

Lauren Poole

Kelly Rodriguez

Sophie Sorenson

Caroline Szydlowski

 

Men’s Tennis

Millen Hurrion

 

Women’s Tennis

Carla Girbau

 

Men’s Track and Field/Cross Country

Myles Anders – master’s degree

Nathan Bann

Jacob Brizendine

Tai Brown

Cameron Council

Joe Jardine

Rahman Minor

Matt Peare

Patrick Schaefer

Jacob Smith

Josh Sobota

Gabe Szalay

Trevor Warren

Kenroy Williams – master’s degree

Lincoln Young

 

Women’s Track and Field/Cross Country

Perri Bockrath

Rachel Boice

Sophie Carrier

Amaya Chadwick

Jenna Gearing

Alexis Holmes

Kaitlyn Lacy

Molly Leppelmeier – master’s degree

Sarah Michels

Masai Russell

Abby Steiner

Siobhan Szerencsits

Kelli Walsh

 

Volleyball

Cameron Scheitzach

Alli Stumler

Lauren Tharp

According to UK Athletics, graduation marks yet another milestone of academic success for student-athletes. Guided by UK Athletics’ Student-Athlete Experience Division, Wildcat student-athletes have achieved a cumulative grade-point average of better than 3.0 in 19 consecutive semesters, with grades for the spring semester set to be finalized next week. In November, UK student-athletes broke the school record for the Federal Graduation Rate and tied the school record for NCAA Graduation Success Rate.

 

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