It’s May. 6 and that means it’s time to look at three of the greatest Kentucky Wildcats to dawn the No. 6 on their uniform.
Here we find one of the all-time UK Basketball legends, a recent baseball star, and 1990s return specialist.
Cliff Hagan (Men’s Basketball 1950-54)
Our first No. 6 is the legendary Cliff Hagan. Hagan played three seasons at Kentucky and, as a freshman in 1951, helped the Cats win a national championship.
Hagan earned consensus first-team All-American honors as a sophomore in 1952 as he averaged 21.6 points per game. He was also named First-Team SEC.
After the program was handed the death penalty for the 1952-53 season, Hagan graduated and became eligible for the 1953 NBA Draft where he was selected 21st overall by the Boston Celtics. Hagan still returned for one last year at UK during the 1954-54 season, where he again earned consensus first-team All-American honors after averaging 24 points per game.
Hagan went onto win the 1958 NBA Championship with the St. Louis Hawks and was a five-time NBA all-star. In 1972 he returned to Lexington to become UK’s Hagan returned assistant athletic director and took over for C.M. Newton in 1975. His number six is retired by UK Basketball and he was inducted into the UK Athletics Hall of Fame in 2005.
Tristan Pompey (Baseball 2016-18)
Outfielder Tristian Pompey played a crucial role in leading the Kentucky Baseball programs’ first-ever NCAA Super Regional appearance.
After hitting just .233 as a freshman in 2016, Pompey broke out in 2017 under first-year head coach Nick Mingione’s guidance. Pompey slashed .361/.464/.541 with 96 hits, 10 home runs and 45 RBI’s. He helped guide Kentucky to the NCAA Super Regionals after the Cats defeated Ohio, Indiana and NC State in the Lexington Regional. The outfielder earned First-Team All-SEC honors and was a Gregg Olson Breakout Player of the Year semifinalist.
Pompey continued his production as a junior in 2018 slashing .335/.448/.557 with seven home runs and 39 RBI’s. After the season, he was drafted in the third round of the 2018 MLB Draft by the Miami Marlins and opted to sign with the club ending his college career.
Kio Sanford (Football 1994-97)
Our final No. 6 did a little bit of everything for the Football Wildcats in the mid-1990s. Kio Sanford hauled in 64 passes at wide receiver for the Wildcats in four college seasons going for 888 yards and five touchdowns.
While productive at wideout, he was best known for showing off his speed in the return game. Sanford returned 74 kicks and 56 punts in his four college season, averaging 22.6 yards per kick return and 6.8 per punt return. In 1994, Sanford returned 33 kicks for 820 yards and a touchdown leading the SEC.
Sanford was drafted in the seventh round of the 1998 NFL Draft by the San Diego Chargers.
Photo Via: UK Athletics