A nonprofit publication of the Kentucky Center for Public Service Journalism

Murray State names Dean Hood football head coach; brings 30 years of college coaching experience

Murray State University has named Dean Hood as the head coach for the Racers football program. Hood, Murray State’s 19th head coach, was introduced in front of faculty, staff, regents, community friends and supporters at Heritage Hall. He brings with him an intense desire to lead a storied program and a wealth of experience building successful football programs at both the NCAA Division I FBS and...

Johnson, Snell combine to spark Kentucky’s second half comeback in 27-16 win over Eastern Kentucky

By Keith Taylor Kentucky Today The last time Kentucky played Eastern Kentucky, it took overtime and the fourth-largest comeback in school history for the Wildcats to fend off the Colonels. This time, Kentucky had to rally, but no extra period was needed. The Wildcats (2-0) received a scare from the Colonels and trailed 13-3 in the second quarter before outscoring Eastern 24-3 the remainder of the contest...

Stoops doesn’t expect neighboring Eastern Kentucky to be a pushover in Cats’ home opener

By Keith Taylor Kentucky Today Kentucky football coach Mark Stoops knows Eastern Kentucky University won’t be a pushover in his team’s home opener set for noon Saturday at Kroger Field. In the last meeting between the two teams, the Wildcats needed overtime to fend off the Colonels, escaping with a 34-27 victory despite trailing by a pair of touchdowns in the fourth quarter. Kentucky defensive...

Set to take on former team, UK’s Hood has moved past bitter ending at Eastern Kentucky

By Keith Taylor Kentucky Today After Eastern Kentucky University dismissed Dean Hood following the 2015 season, the longtime coach packed up his family and moved to Charlotte for a season of unexpected restoration and renewal. At the time, Hood, currently outside linebackers and special teams coach at Kentucky, thought Charlotte needed his expertise. It turns out he needed to move out of state to help...

Kentucky’s defensive preparations focused on improving fundamentals, handling faster tempo

By Keith Taylor Kentucky Today Although run defense is a priority, Kentucky defensive coordinator Matt House wants to see his unit get better in every phase of the game. House said the improvement starts with the basic fundamentals and alignment and that’s an area the coaching staff hopes the Wildcats improve on during the last two weeks of camp. Kentucky practiced Friday morning and a second scrimmage...

Improving turnover-ratio will be special point of emphasis for Stoops, Wildcats this season

By Keith Taylor Kentucky Today Mark Stoops has plenty of experience when it comes to coaching defense. Stoops, a former defensive coordinator at Florida State before taking his first head coaching job at Kentucky more than five years ago, wants the Wildcats to improve their turnover margin this season, an area that will be a major point of emphasis when Kentucky opens fall training camp next week. Kentucky...

Back in the Bluegrass: Former EKU coach Dean Hood joins Mark Stoops’ staff at Kentucky

Dean Hood, a familiar name for football fans around the Commonwealth, returns to the Bluegrass to join Mark Stoops’ staff as the special teams coordinator and outside linebackers coach, it was announced Wednesday. Hood spent 13 years at Eastern Kentucky in Richmond, Kentucky, including eight seasons as the head coach from 2008-15.   “I could not be more excited to have Coach Hood join our staff,”...

Keith Taylor: Calipari says Tyler Ulis will excel in NBA; Cats to play twice in New York next season

John Calipari thinks Tyler Ulis will enjoy a successful career and credits Isaiah Thomas for paving the way for the former Kentucky point guard and other undersized players seeking a career at the next level. Thomas, a 5-foot-9 guard for the Boston Celtics, averaged 22.2 points, 6.3 assists and three rebounds per game this past season. Thomas proved that size doesn’t matter when it comes to playing...

Tennessee special teams coordinator Elder named head football coach at Eastern Kentucky

Eastern Kentucky University will introduce new head football coach Mark Elder at a press conference on Thursday. Elder has served as the tight ends coach and special teams coordinator at the University of Tennessee since 2013. The press conference will begin at 2 p.m. and will be held at O’Donnell Auditorium inside the Whitlock Building on the campus of Eastern Kentucky University. Media members...

After ending season on down note, Eastern Kentucky dismisses head football coach Dean Hood

Eastern Kentucky University has relieved Dean Hood of his duties as head football coach, Director of Athletics Steve Lochmueller announced Monday. “I want to thank Dean for his service to Eastern Kentucky University,” Lochmueller said. “These decisions are never taken lightly. After a careful review of our football program, I feel a change in leadership is needed.” Hood...

Keith Taylor: Stoops wants a ‘good, clean, hard-fought’ game against instate foe EKU

Kentucky tight end C.J. Conrad scores his first collegiate touchdown in the Wildcats’ 21-13 win over Missouri last week. The Wildcats host Eastern Kentucky Saturday at Commonwealth Stadium (Photo by Tammie Brown)   Mark Stoops is focused on football and not what transpired off the field between members of his team and Eastern Kentucky University. The Kentucky coach wants no part of any confrontations...

Keith Taylor: Stoops wants a 'good, clean, hard-fought' game against instate foe EKU

Kentucky tight end C.J. Conrad scores his first collegiate touchdown in the Wildcats’ 21-13 win over Missouri last week. The Wildcats host Eastern Kentucky Saturday at Commonwealth Stadium (Photo by Tammie Brown)   Mark Stoops is focused on football and not what transpired off the field between members of his team and Eastern Kentucky University. The Kentucky coach wants no part of any confrontations...

Eastern Kentucky looking for ninth straight win in OVC openers against Austin Peay

North Carolina State scored two touchdowns in the second quarter on its way to a 35-0 victory against Eastern Kentucky in the Colonels last outing. EKU hosts Austin Peay in its OVC opener Saturday at 6 p.m. (EKU Athletics Photo)   Eastern Kentucky University will open its quest for a 22nd Ohio Valley Conference championship Saturday when the Colonels open league play at home against Austin Peay.   The...

Colonels take on a North Carolina State squad knocking on the door of a national ranking

Saturday’s game in Raleigh, North Carolina is scheduled to get underway at 6 p.m. and will air live online on ESPN3, where available (EKU Athletics Photo)   Eastern Kentucky University’s football team will face a top-25 caliber squad when the Colonels play at North Carolina State on Saturday. The Wolfpack are receiving votes in both FBS polls while EKU is ranked 19th in the two major...

Sports Notes: UofL athletics may be betting that some recruits will want to see the money

Louisville’s athletics department announced that its cost of attendance scholarship was among the most generous in the nation (UofL Athletics Photo)   Most schools from the so-called “Power Five” conferences downplayed the impact that new cost of attendance scholarships would have on recruiting, particularly in football.   The prevailing argument seemed to be that a player...

EKU opens preseason practice this week; public scrimmages set for Aug. 15, Aug. 22

EKU has scheduled scrimmages for Aug. 15 and Aug. 22. All practices and scrimmages are set be held at Roy Kidd Stadium and are open to the public (EKU Athletics Photo)   The Eastern Kentucky Colonels will report to campus on Tuesday and have their first preseason football practice on Wednesday at Roy Kidd Stadium.   Coach Dean Hood’s Colonels will hold 15 practices and two scrimmages...

Hood adds former Florida standout Skalaski to football staff as EKU associate head coach

Charlie Skalaski, III will join the Eastern Kentucky University football program as associate head coach, wide receivers coach and recruiting coordinator, head coach Dean Hood said.   Skalaski brings a host of collegiate and professional coaching experience with him to Richmond. He started his coaching career working under the likes of Steve Spurrier and Mike Shanahan at the University of Florida...

EKU road warriors seek to keep pressure on in OVC race, face last-place Tennessee State

Eastern is looking for its eighth win of the year, which would tie coach Dean Hoods’ high mark with the program (EKU Athletics Photo)   Eastern Kentucky will try to keep the pressure on Jacksonville State in the Ohio Valley Conference football race Saturday when the Colonels travel to Tennessee State for a 3 p.m. matchup with the Tigers.   The Colonels, ranked 16th in the country in...

Unbeaten after five games for the first time since 1990, EKU set to host Eastern Illinois

Fresh off a 31-0 shutout over Ohio Valley Conference foe Austin Peay Saturday, the Eastern Kentucky University football team moved up in the national polls to No. 16 in the FCS Coaches Poll and No. 17 in the Sports Network Media Poll.   Eastern (5-0, 2-0 OVC) is one of just seven remaining undefeated teams at the FCS level. The other undefeated teams are Charleston Southern (5-0), Coastal Carolina...

No. 18 Eastern Kentucky travels to Austin Peay aiming to maintain its perfect record

EKU will try to improve to 5-0 for the first time since 1990 and the ninth time in program history when the Colonels take on Austin Peay Saturday (EKU Athletics Photo)   Eastern Kentucky returns from it bye week Saturday to travel to Austin Peay for an Ohio Valley Conference matchup with the winless Governors. Kick-off is set for 7 p.m. in Clarksville, Tenn.   Austin Peay has won the last...