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Six University of Kentucky greats will be inducted into the UK Athletics Hall of Fame in late September. The 2012 class includes former UK student-athletes Derek Abney (football), Leroy Edwards (men’s basketball), J.B. Holmes (men’s golf), Jeff Keener (baseball), Clayton Moss (swimming and diving) and Nancy Scranton (women’s golf). The class will be formally inducted during Hall of Fame Weekend, Sept. 14-15, in conjunction with the football game against Western Kentucky University.
Derek Abney (2000-03) is arguably the greatest kick returner in college football history after setting seven NCAA records, 11 SEC records and 14 school records for kick returns and all-purpose yardage. Abney was named a first-team All-America as a junior, second-team All-America as a senior and a three-year first-team All-SEC performer, becoming only the fourth player in school history to accomplish that feat. The talented star was the first player in NCAA history to accumulate 2,000 receiving yards, 2,000 kickoff return yards and 1,000 punt return yards. In all, Abney returned eight kicks for touchdowns during his career (six punts, two kickoffs), while he ended his UK career ranked second in three statistical categories: receptions (197), receiving yards (2,339) and touchdowns receiving (18). Abney’s NFL career ended because of injury.
J.B. Holmes (2002-05) led UK to its lone SEC championship in 2005 on top of being named the SEC Golfer of the Year, becoming the only UK player to claim the distinguished honor in school history. During his career, Holmes earned six first-place finishes and 35 top-10 finishes, more than any other player in the Brian Craig Era. The Kentucky native was a PING All-American three years, including a first-team All-American in 2004. He also earned first-team All-America by the Golf Coaches Association of America in 2005 and was named an Academic All-American, the GCAA All-American Scholar and the Cleveland Golf All-American Scholar in 2004 and 2005. Professionally, Holmes won two FBR Open titles on the PGA Tour and was a member of the 2008 Ryder Cup championship team. He has surpassed more than $10 million in career earnings.
Leroy Edwards (1935) was named the 1935 Helms National Player of the Year after averaging 16.3 points per game that season. A consensus first- team All-American, Edwards was also named first team All-SEC after leading the Wildcats to a perfect 11-0 record in league play en route to the SEC Championship.
Jeff Keener (1980-81) compiled a 20-5 pitching record during his two seasons with the Wildcats and still holds UK career records with a 2.01 ERA. He allowed only 5.1 hits per nine innings en route to a career winning percentage of .800, which is second in school history.
Clayton Moss (1999-2003) was an eight-time All-America diver and three-time All-America honorable mention honoree for the Wildcats. He earned All-America status on all three boards during his time at UK.
Nancy Scranton (1983-84) was Kentucky’s first All-SEC performer in women’s golf and also is UK’s most successful player in the LPGA ranks.