June 9, 2011
LEXINGTON, Ky. – University of Kentucky football senior linebackers Danny Trevathan and Ronnie Sneed have been named to the preseason watch list for the inaugural Pony Express Award, which will honor the most dynamic two- or three-player teammate groups for the 2011 college football season.
Kentucky’s Trevathan and Sneed are among 48 tandems and trios included in the national watch list. The award, which stems from Southern Methodist University’s legendary Pony Express backfield of Craig James and Eric Dickerson, will look at two- and three-player groups from across the nation and ultimately honor the combination whose work ethic, desire, on- and off-field leadership and playmaking ability best fuel their teams.
Trevathan and Sneed were a huge part of Kentucky’s defense last season, ranking first and third on the team in tackles, respectively. Trevathan, who was a first-team All-America and All-Southeastern Conference selection last year, led UK in several defensive categories, including tackles (144), tackles-for-loss (16) and fumbles forced (four). Trevathan also led the SEC in tackles and finished third in tackles-for-loss and fumbles forced.
Sneed, a native of Tallahassee, Fla., ended his junior year with 61 tackles, five tackles-for-loss, 1.5 sacks, one pass breakup and tied a team high in quarterback hurries with five. Sneed had his career high last year against Georgia, earning eight tackles and one tackle-for-loss. The middle linebacker was solid in SEC games, earning 47 of his 61 tackles in conference play.
The award will be announced at the conclusion of the 2011 regular season.
As one of the most prolific backfields in college football history, the Pony Express, Dickerson and James led SMU to a 10-0-1 record in 1982, finishing the year ranked No. 2 in the country. As juniors in 1981, the pair combined to rush for 2,575 yards and 27 touchdowns, leading the Ponies to a 10-1 record and the finishing the season ranked No. 5 in the AP poll. Dickerson would go on to a Hall of Fame career in the NFL, being named to the league’s all-decade team for the 1980s, while James had a stellar career for the New England Patriots, rushing for more than 1,200 yards in 1985 to lead the Pats to Super Bowl XX. James currently serves as a college football analyst for ESPN on ABC.
“Eric and I were able to complement each other on the field in such a way that together we formed a much more potent weapon than even our individual talents would have suggested,” said James. “We have remained life-long friends, and each season we have always had fun talking about the great tandems that were making an imprint on the game that season. We decided someone should recognize these great combinations, and that really became the genesis of the Pony Express Award.”
A gala dinner to honor this year’s Pony Express Award recipients will be held after the season. More information on that event will be available at the start of the college football season.