Freshman defensive lineman Deone Walker was named Southeastern Conference co-Defensive Lineman of the Week after his impactful performance in Kentucky’s 26-13 Governor’s Cup victory over Louisville, the league announced Monday.
Walker made multiple big plays at crucial times of the game as he totaled six tackles, one-half quarterback sack plus one-half additional tackle for loss, caused a fumble and had two quarterback hurries.
Walker played a huge role in a first-quarter series when the Wildcats stopped Louisville on downs inside the UK 15-yard line. On first down Walker had a quarterback hurry that forced an incompletion; on second down, he shared a one-yard tackle for loss; UK got a turnover on downs on that series to preserve a 7-0 lead.
With Louisville having the potential to take the lead on the opening possession of the third quarter, Walker shared a nine-yard quarterback sack on the first play. UK forced a punt, kicked a field goal, and led by at least two possessions the remainder of the game. Later in the third quarter, his QB hurry on third down forced a punt that UK turned into a field goal.
Walker shares the honor with defensive end Roman Harrison of Tennessee.
For the season, the 6-foot-6, 330-pounder from Detroit, has 39 total tackles, 3.5 tackles for loss, one sack, five quarterback hurries, two pass breakups and one forced fumble. He is a Shaun Alexander Freshman of the Year Award (semifinalist) and Midseason True Freshman All-American (The Athletic, 247 Sports, On3.com, College Football News).
Kentucky finished the regular season 7-5 and is awaiting a bowl invitation.