List of University of Kentucky alumni

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This is a list of encyclopedic people associated with the University of Kentucky in the United States of America.

Notable alumni[edit]

Name Years attended Interest
Sam Abell National Geographic photographer.
George Akin Scientist on the Manhattan Project.
Percival Baker Member of the Legislative Assembly of Alberta in 1921.
Wendell Berry Poet, essayist and farmer.
Mark Berger Economist.
Sarah Gibson Blanding First female president of Vassar College.
Joe Blanton Former Major League Baseball pitcher; member of the 2008 World Series Champion Philadelphia Phillies, winner of Game 4 of the 2008 World Series.
Robert A. Bryan M.A., PhD President of the University of Florida, University of Central Florida and University of South Florida.
Hillary Canada B.A. Journalist for Dow Jones & Company
Albert B. "Ben" Chandler Former U.S. Representative from Kentucky's Sixth Congressional District.
Albert B. "Happy" Chandler He was Governor of Kentucky, a U.S. Senator from Kentucky, a Commissioner of Major League Baseball who integrated Major League Baseball and was inducted in the Baseball Hall of Fame.
Emily Cox Miss Kentucky 2008.
Brady J. Deaton Chancellor of the University of Missouri
David Dick B.A., M.A. in English literature CBS News correspondent, Kentucky author and publisher, UK journalism faculty member, 1985-1996
Nick Dimengo Editor for Maxim Magazine.
James Patrick Dunne songwriter, recording artist, composer, film and television producer, entrepreneur, and president of Inspire
Leonard S. Echols He was an American politician who represented West Virginia in the United States House of Representatives.
Edward A. Eckenhoff M.A. in Education Founder and president of the National Rehabilitation Hospital in Washington, D.C.
Keith Feltner Founder of First Flix,and Trinity Investment Group, parent company of Bay Breeze Carwash and Lube, Bay Breeze Express Wash, AutoBrite Chemicals, The Carwash People, Frost Shield, entrepreneur.
Ernie Fletcher Former Governor of Kentucky.
Betty Jane Gorin-Smith B.A. and M.A. Historian.
Sara Beth Gregory B.A. (2003) and Law (2007) Current member of the Kentucky State Senate, former state representative; lawyer in Monticello.
James Michael Guiler A doctor who has been accused in civil suits [2] of unnecessarily branding the uteruses of several women while performing their hysterectomies. The letters "UK" — referring to his alma mater [3] — were allegedly used to show orientation during the laparoscopic procedures. As of 2008, there have been no trials or settlements.
Carol Martin "Bill" Gatton A businessman and major contributor to the university. The College of Business and Economics was named after him.
Jenny Hansen 13-time All-American gymnast, who continues to hold every individual gymnastics record in UK school history; also selected as the "NCAA 25th Anniversary Most Outstanding Gymnast".
Tom Hammond American sportscaster.
Elizabeth Hardwick American writer.
Gordon Henderson Director of the UCLA Bruin Marching Band.
W. James Host Founder of Host Communications.
Andy Jackson University of Florida men's tennis coach
Ashley Judd Actress. Also a noted celebrity fan of the Wildcats (men's) basketball team.
Kim Yong-ik M.A. Author.
William English Kirwan Chancellor of the University System of Maryland. Son of former university president A. D. Kirwan.
Glenn Kotche A percussionist and composer, best known as drummer for Chicago rock band Wilco. He was named the 41st greatest drummer of all time by Gigwise in 2008.
John E. Leland Director of the University of Dayton Research Institute.
William Lipscomb 1976 winner of the Nobel Prize in Chemistry.
Ken Lucas Former U.S. representative from Kentucky's fourth congressional district.
Jerry Lundergan Member of the Kentucky House of Representatives, chairman of the Kentucky Democratic Party[1]
Mitch McConnell U.S. Senator from Kentucky, current Senate Minority Leader.
Russ Mobley A theatre arts graduate and a former state representative from Taylor and Adair counties.
Read Morgan 1950–1952 Actor (The Deputy); Wildcats basketball player.
Hugh M. Milton II United States Under Secretary of the Army from 1958 to 1961.
Thomas Hunt Morgan Natural scientist and winner of the 1933 Nobel Prize in Physiology or Medicine.
Thomas Volney Munson graduated 1870 Horticulturalist.
Story Musgrave An astronaut.
Harry Dean Stanton Actor. Known for playing Roman Grant on Big Love.
Edwin O. Ware, Sr. Baptist clergyman and principal founder of Louisiana College in Pineville, Louisiana.
Paul E. Patton A two term governor of Kentucky.
Beverly Perdue Former governor of North Carolina.
Jean Ritchie Folk musician, singer, and songwriter who plays the Appalachian dulcimer, and is from Perry County, Kentucky.
Elizabeth Madox Roberts Kentucky poet and novelist.
Don Rosa Eisner Award winning writer/artist of Donald Duck and Uncle Scrooge comic books.
Warren Rosenthal Former CEO of Jerrico, the original parent company of Denny's, Long John Silver's, and Fazoli's.
John T. Scopes A defendant in the Scopes Trial.
Elvis Jacob Stahr Jr. 1932–36 Secretary of the Army under President John F. Kennedy, President of Indiana University and West Virginia University, and President of The National Audubon Society.
Ted Strickland Former Governor of Ohio.
Chris Sullivan Founder of Outback Steakhouse.
Kristine Sutherland Actress. Buffy the Vampire Slayer; Honey, I Shrunk the Kids
M. E. Hart Played role as "MC Double Def DP" in the Software Publishers Association video, Don’t Copy That Floppy.
Tom Jefferson Terral Governor of Arkansas from 1925 to 1927.
Dr. Janey Thornton Deputy Undersecretary of Agriculture in the Obama Administration.
Lee T. Todd, Jr. The former president of the University of Kentucky, inventor, entrepreneur.
Rudy Vaughn Musician, Singer-songwriter
Frank Vogel Current head coach for the Indiana Pacers of the NBA.
Brandon Webb Currently a pitcher for the Arizona Diamondbacks.
Ed Whitfield U.S. Representative from Kentucky's First Congressional District
Cecil Williams 1947–1950 Journalist and business writer in Louisiana
Yang Sung-chul 1970 (Ph.D.) Political scientist, South Korean ambassador to the United States (2000–2003)[2]
Michael York Pulitzer Prize for Investigative Reporting

Sports alumni[edit]

Basketball alumni[edit]

Name Years attended Interest
Derek Anderson 1994–97[b 1] Former NBA player (2005–06 NBA champion).
Kelenna Azubuike 2002–05 Former NBA Cleveland Cavaliers player.
Scotty Baesler Former U.S. Representative from Kentucky.
Eric Bledsoe 2009–10 One of five lottery picks from UK in the 2010 NBA Draft and current player for the Phoenix Suns.
Keith Bogans 1999–2003 NBA Boston Celtics player.
Sam Bowie 1979–84[b 2] 2nd pick in 1984 NBA Draft (ahead of Michael Jordan).
Dwane Casey Former Minnesota Timberwolves Head Coach.
Rex Chapman 1986–88 Former NBA player and first-ever draft choice in Hornets franchise history.
DeMarcus Cousins 2009–10 One of five lottery picks from UK in the 2010 NBA Draft and current player for the Sacramento Kings.[3]
Joe Crawford 2004–2008 NBA New York Knicks player.

2nd round draft; pick 58th overall in the 2008 NBA Draft by the Los Angeles Lakers.

Erik Daniels 2000–04 NBDL Fayetteville Patriots player.
Anthony Davis 2011–12 Consensus men's college player of the year in 2011–12; now in the NBA with the New Orleans Pelicans.
Tony Delk 1992–96 NBA Detroit Pistons player.
Victoria Dunlap 2007–11 WNBA player with the Washington Mystics.
Richie Farmer 1988–92 Never played professional basketball; Kentucky Commissioner of Agriculture, 2003–2011.
Gerald Fitch 2000–04 TBL Galatasaray Cafe Crown player.
Fabulous Five N/A 1948 Olympic basketball gold medalists.
Travis Ford 1990–94[b 3] Oklahoma State University men's basketball head coach.
Jack Givens 1974–78 1978 NCAA Basketball Tournament Most Outstanding Player.
Kevin Grevey 1972–75 Former NBA player.
Josh Harrellson 2008–11 NBA player for the Detroit Pistons
Chuck Hayes 2001–05 NBA player with the Toronto Raptors.
Dan Issel 1966–70 All-time leading men's scorer and former Denver Nuggets head coach.
Terrence Jones 2010–12 The 18th overall pick in the 2012 NBA Draft and current player for the Houston Rockets
Enes Kanter 2010–11[b 4] The 3rd pick in the 2011 NBA Draft and current player for the Utah Jazz.
Michael Kidd-Gilchrist 2011–12 The 2nd pick in the 2012 NBA Draft and current player for the Charlotte Bobcats
Doron Lamb 2010–12 NBA player for the Orlando Magic
Brandon Knight 2010–11 The 8th pick in the 2011 NBA Draft and current player for the Milwaukee Bucks.
Kyle Macy 1976–79[b 5] Former Morehead State University men's basketball head coach.
Jamaal Magloire 1996–2000 NBA Toronto Raptors player.
Jamal Mashburn 1990–93 Former NBA All-Star; current ESPN basketball analyst.
Steve Masiello 1996–2000 Current head coach at Manhattan College.
Walter McCarty 1992–96[b 6] Former NBA player; current assistant coach at the University of Louisville.
Ron Mercer 1995–97 Current NBA free agent who has played with 7 different teams.
Darius Miller 2008–12 NBA player for the New Orleans Pelicans
Dirk Minniefield 1979–83 Former NBA player.
Nazr Mohammed 1995–98 NBA Chicago Bulls player; member of the 2004–05 NBA champion San Antonio Spurs.
Randolph Morris 2004–07 Former NBA player.
Cotton Nash 1961–64 Former NBA player and MLB outfielder.
Daniel Orton 2009–10 One of five lottery picks from UK in the 2010 NBA Draft
Scott Padgett 1994–99[b 7] ACB CB Granada player.
Patrick Patterson 2007–10 One of five lottery picks from UK in the 2010 NBA Draft and current player for the Toronto Raptors.
John Pelphrey 1988–92 Current assistant at the University of Florida and former head coach at the University of Arkansas.
Mark Pope 1993–96[b 8] Former NBA player. Current assistant at BYU.
Tayshaun Prince 1998–2002 NBA Memphis Grizzlies player; member of the 2003–04 NBA champion Detroit Pistons.
Frank Ramsey 1950–54 Seven-time NBA champion.
Pat Riley 1963–67 NBA Miami Heat former coach, and current team president; coached the 2005–06 NBA champion Miami Heat.
Rajon Rondo 2004–06 NBA Boston Celtics player; member of the 2007–08 NBA champion Boston Celtics.
Jeff Sheppard 1993–98[b 9] 1998 NCAA Basketball Tournament Most Outstanding Player.
Valerie Still 1979–83 Leading scorer in UK basketball history, male or female. Played professionally in Europe and the ABL before briefly playing for the Washington Mystics in the WNBA. Younger sister of UK football great Art Still.
Marquis Teague 2011–12 NBA player for the Brooklyn Nets
Wayne Turner 1995–99 ANBL New Zealand Breakers player. Ended his UK career as the all-time NCAA leader in games played (record since surpassed).
Antoine Walker 1994–96 Retired NBA player with several teams (2005–06 NBA champion with the Miami Heat).
Kenny Walker 1982–86 1985–86 All American and 5th pick in 1986 NBA Draft.
Bobby Watson Former NBA player.
Sean Woods 1988–92 Current head coach at Morehead State University.
Nerlens Noel 2012–13 The 6th pick in the 2013 NBA Draft and current player for the Philadelphia 76ers.
John Wall 2009–10 The 1st pick of the 2010 NBA Draft and current player for the Washington Wizards. Julius Randle 2013-14 Drafted to Lakers


  • For players who enrolled from 1954 through 1971, their actual playing career did not start until a year after they first attended. At that time, freshmen were ineligible to play at varsity level.
  1. ^ Did not play until 1995, as he had to sit out the 1994–95 season after transferring from Ohio State.
  2. ^ Did not play in the 1981–82 or 1982–83 seasons due to injury.
  3. ^ Did not play until 1991, as he had to sit out the 1990–91 season after transferring from Missouri.
  4. ^ Although Kanter enrolled at Kentucky, he never played because he was declared ineligible by the NCAA due to financial benefits he had received from his former Turkish club team of Fenerbahçe Ülker.
  5. ^ Did not play until 1977, as he had to sit out the 1976–77 season after transferring from Purdue.
  6. ^ Did not play in the 1992–93 season for academic reasons.
  7. ^ Did not play in 1995–96 or the first half of the 1996–97 season for academic reasons.
  8. ^ Did not play until 1994, as he had to sit out the 1993–94 season after transferring from Washington.
  9. ^ Did not play in the 1996–97 season due to injury.

Football alumni[edit]

Name Years attended Interest
Glenn Holt NFL Cincinnati Bengals wide receiver.
Derek Abney NFL Former Chicago Bears wide receiver.
George Blanda American Football League MVP, 1961, two-time AFL champ, and member of the Pro Football Hall of Fame.
Neal Brown University of Kentucky offensive coordinator
Shane Boyd Former Arizona Cardinals quarterback.
Vincent "Sweet Pea" Burns NFL Former Indianapolis Colts defensive end.
Jerry Claiborne 1946–1950 Former head football coach.
Randall Cobb 2008–11 Current wide receiver and return specialist with the Green Bay Packers. Also the first person born in the 1990s to play in the NFL.
Tim Couch 1996–1999 Former Cleveland Browns & Jacksonville Jaguars quarterback.
Dermontti Dawson Former NFL offensive lineman for the Pittsburgh Steelers. To be inducted into the Pro Football Hall of Fame in 2012.
Christian Johnson AFL player
Mark Higgs Former NFL running back.
Dennis Johnson Former San Francisco 49ers defensive end. Currently participating with the Lexington Horsemen.
Don King Former NFL defensive tackle.
Kelly Kirchbaum Professional football player.
Jared Lorenzen Former New York Giants quarterback.
Ricky Lumpkin NFL player.
Tim Masthay Current punter for the Green Bay Packers.
Marlon McCree Former San Diego Chargers, current Denver Broncos safety.
Rick Nuzum Former NFL center.
Babe Parilli Three-time American Football League all-star and 1968 Super Bowl champ.
David De La Peralle Former CFL offensive lineman.
Joe "Joker" Phillips 1981–85 Former wide receiver for the Washington Redskins and the CFL's Toronto Argonauts; former UK head coach.
Artose Pinner Former Minnesota Vikings running back.
Dewayne Robertson Former New York Jets, formerDenver Broncos defensive tackle.
Howard Schnellenberger Retired football coach, most recently with Florida Atlantic. Also a former head coach of the NFL's Baltimore Colts, and of Miami, Louisville, and Oklahoma in the college ranks.
Art Still Former Kansas City Chiefs player and 4-time Pro Bowler. Older brother of Valerie Still (see basketball alumni).
Jeff Van Note Former Atlanta Falcons offensive lineman and 6-time Pro Bowler.
Moe Williams Former Minnesota Vikings running back.
Ken Willis Former Dallas Cowboys kicker.
Earl Wilson NFL and CFL player.
Craig Yeast 1995–1998 Former Cincinnati Bengals receiver.

Baseball alumni[edit]

Name Years attended Playing highlights
Joe Blanton pitcher for the Philadelphia Phillies, pitched in the 2008 World Series winning Phillies.
Andy Green currently with the New York Mets, former player of the Arizona Diamondbacks
Jason Kipnis second baseman for the Cleveland Indians
Jim Leyritz former Major League Baseball player, most notably for the New York Yankees.
Brandon Webb pitcher for the Arizona Diamondbacks, 2006 National League Cy Young Award winner.


Tennis alumni[edit]

  • Khristina Blajkevitch, Ukrainian-Canadian Tennis All-Star [5]

Soccer alumni[edit]


  1. ^ Gerth, Joseph (September 22, 2013). "Ky. Senate candidate's dad brings connections, baggage". USA Today. The Courier-Journal. Retrieved November 13, 2014. 
  2. ^ Bak, In-gyu (2007-12-27). "고려대 국제대학원 양성철 교수" [Korea University professor Yang Sung-chul]. Pressian. Retrieved 2013-10-17. 
  3. ^ "DeMarcus Amir Cousins". Basketball-Reference.Com. Retrieved November 10, 2012. 
  4. ^ [1]
  5. ^