After the conclusion of Kentucky‘s Gator Bowl win over NC State, the Wildcats received more good news as four key seniors announced they will take advantage of the NCAA’s blanket waiver amid the COVID-19 pandemic and return to Lexington for the 2021 season.

Wide receiver Josh Ali, tight end Justin Rigg, kick returner, defensive back Davonte Robinson and special teams gunner Zach Johnson all announced via Twitter that they will return to UK next season.

Both Ali and Rigg will return to learn Kentucky’s new offense under newly hired offensive coordinator Liam Coen. Ali led UK in receiving in 2020 with 53 catches for 480 yards and a touchdown, while Rigg added 12 catches for 145 yards and a touchdown.

On defense, Robinson made his return to his safety spot in 2020 after missing the entire 2019 season with a torn quad. He recorded 19 total tackles with two tackles for loss. He is still best known for his fumble recovery touchdown against Florida in 2018 that was the final play in UK’s 31-year losing streak snapping win over the Gators.

Finally, Johnson has been a key member of UK’s special teams unit the last four seasons. In 2018 he made a momentum-changing hit against No. 14 Mississippi State in a game UK would win 28-7 and then made a similar hit against Virginia Tech in UK’s 2019 Belk Bowl win.

In 2020, Johnson served as the teams’ primary kick returner, where he returned 11 kicks for 228 yards with a season-long 33-return coming against Vanderbilt on November 14.

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