Thursday, July 30, 2015
Lorenzen to go into UK Hall of Fame in September
Jared Lorenzen, a 1999 Highlands graduate, will be inducted into the UK Hall of Fame this fall as a result of the passing records he set during his tenure as quarterback for the Wildcats between 2000 and 2003. In 41 starts, Lorenzen completed school records of 862-of-1,514 passes for another record of 10,354 yards to go with 78 touchdowns and 41 interceptions.
"There is a little bit of pride behind that," Lorenzen said. "It's really neat for my daughter (Taylar) to be able to open up the media guide and see it. It's fun to reminisce."
Hall of Fame Weekend is the weekend of Sept. 25 and 26. The ceremony takes place in conjunction with the home Southeast Conference game against Missouri.
Lorenzen has plenty of memories from his playing days with the Wildcats. The best UK did during his time came in 2002 during his redshirt junior season. Kentucky finished 7-5 under Guy Morriss but could not go to a bowl game as the result of sanctions that took place when Hal Mumme was head coach. Kentucky upset Louisville to open that season. A last-second hail mary against Louisiana State prevented the Wildcats from going 8-4 that season.
Lorenzen threw for 528 yards in a 34-30 loss to Georgia as a redshirt freshman. He broke Tim Couch's single-game record as a result. The passing yards were the second-highest single-game total in SEC history at that point. Kentucky threw the ball a lot when Mumme was the head coach.
In that game, Lorenzen saw a five-yard hitch route go for 75 yards, a swing pass go for 82 yards and a 10-yard downfield pass go for 90. He had good skill players like Artose Pinner and Derek Smith around him along with a nice offensive line in his time there.
"This is the ultimate sport where I'm not anything without those guys," Lorenzen said. "I wouldn't have gotten the yards I had or anything else. I needed guys to break tackles for me. I needed guys to block up front. Luckily, I had enough of those plays to get the touchdowns and yards."
Lorenzen and Smith led the 1998 Highlands team to an undefeated season and Class 3A state championship. The Bluebirds set a new state record with 801 points that year. That record was not broken until the 2011 undefeated Highlands Class 4A state champions scored 849 points.
"I was extremely excited that Jared made the UK Hall of Fame," said Dale Mueller, former Highlands Head Coach. "He certainly deserved it. He was one of the greatest players I ever coached. He is such a unique person because he is so talented and competitive, but also so humble and kind."
Lorenzen played in the National Football League for a couple seasons. He won a Super Bowl Ring with the New York Giants during that time.
Lorenzen recently tried to make a return to football in the Continental Indoor Football League with the Northern Kentucky River Monsters. But an injury forced him to stop playing. But he's still doing a pre-game show with Kentucky Sports Radio during football season and helping out with his daughter Taylar and son Tayden's teams. Taylar Lorenzen is entering the eighth grade and plays softball.
"It's kind of funny how that stuff takes up your days," Lorenzen said. "Every weekend for the past three months, you're on the road traveling with (Taylar Lorenzen). During football season, I'll do all the pregame stuff so I'm always surrounding myself with it. I love being around sports. When I'm not doing that, Tayden is getting into something."
The Highlands softball team finished 24-9 last season, captured the 36th District title, but fell 5-4 to Notre Dame in the 9th Region title game. Highlands won the 9th Region in 2014 before going 1-2 in the double-elimination state tournament.
"He's helped me with softball all the way," Taylar Lorenzen said. "I love playing with him because he teaches me new stuff all the time."
Jared Lorenzen said he's done travel ball with her this year. He also played basketball and baseball during his time at Highlands.
"It's just been so much fun to watch her grown up and be her own self," Jared Lorenzen said. "I am trying to instill in her that it's a game of failure. If you get out six times out of 10, you're still going to the Hall of Fame batting .400. I love seeing the competitiveness in her. It's real fun. Coach Coffey does a great job with those girls. I hope she can help more of a tradition with the softball team."
Jared Lorenzen realizes people may have high expectations for his kids. But he wants Taylar and Tayden to just be themselves.
"I don't put any pressure on them," Jared Lorenzen said. "If Taylar didn't want to play sports, great. If Tayden grows up and it's not his thing, that's fine. There's so much more to life than playing football and softball at Highlands. I hope they grow up to be good people."
Aside from that, Jared Lorenzen just started a new clothing business called ThrowboyTees. He said it has gone well so far.
"It's the easiest way for me to stay with the fans. Twitter is great," he said. "This is a way I can take what they're saying, throw it out there and see if it sticks. The plan is to keep building and building and we hope to have a successful company."
Kentucky opens the season Sept. 5 at home against Louisiana-Lafayette. Game time is 7 p.m.