UK's Jarmon makes it official: "I will stay and finish my education"

LEXINGTON, Ky. – After exploring the possibility of entering the National Football League draft, All-Southeastern Conference defensive end Jeremy Jarmon announced Monday that he will stay at Kentucky for his senior season in 2009.

Jarmon has helped the Wildcats to winning seasons and bowl victories in each of his three years at UK, including a 25-19 triumph over East Carolina in the AutoZone Liberty Bowl on Jan. 2.

“After the bowl game, I stayed home (in Collierville, Tenn., near Memphis) and talked to my parents, who thought strongly that the best thing for me was to stay and finish my education,” said Jarmon, who is nearing his degree in political science.

“I talked to Coach (Rich) Brooks and my high school coach, Tim Haney, and got some good advice from them. They felt I have more upside as a player and can get bigger and stronger.”

Jarmon said his NFL evaluation indicated that he was projected as a fourth- or fifth-round pick this year, with the possibility of moving up during pre-draft workouts.

Jarmon was a second-team All-SEC selection in 2008 by Phil Steele’s College Football magazine. He totaled 38 tackles, including 10 tackles for loss and 4.5 quarterback sacks. He ranked second on the team in pass breakups – an amazing feat for a defensive end – by knocking down six passes. He also caused two fumbles.

Jarmon was a first-team All-SEC choice in 2007 by and a second-team All-SEC pick by league coaches. He ranks third in school history with 17.5 sacks during his career and is range of the all-time UK record of 26 by Oliver Barnett.

“It’s exciting to get Jeremy back,” Brooks said. “It’s great to have an experienced leader back to help our young players improve. Much like (linebacker) Micah Johnson, he has first- or second-round draft potential. Jeremy can really improve his game in the coming year, and with he and Micah coming back, we can be more competitive in the SEC.”

Jarmon also is excited the possibilities for the Wildcats in 2009.

“We can get better on both sides of the ball,” Jarmon said. “We have a lot of young players coming back on offense. Getting Micah back helps a lot on defense.

“It looks promising to continue to rewrite the Kentucky record books. Our goals will be to go to a fourth-straight bowl game, get four-straight bowl wins and win an SEC championship.”

Jarmon is the second Wildcat junior to announce his NFL draft intentions. Johnson made his announcement last Friday. All-America and All-SEC cornerback Trevard Lindley is in the process of making his decision, which has a deadline of Jan. 15.

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