Maurice Douglass Named to Kentucky Pro Football Hall of Fame

Maurice Douglass Named to Kentucky Pro Football Hall of Fame

University of Kentucky former defensive standout Maurice Douglass has been named to the 2024 Kentucky Pro Football Hall of Fame, it was announced Thursday night.

Douglass, a native of Muncie, Indiana, transferred to Kentucky in 1984 after two years at Coffeyville Community College. He earned a starting berth in his first season at UK, making two interceptions in helping the Wildcats to a 9-3 record, including a win over Wisconsin in the Hall of Fame Bowl. As a senior in 1985, Douglass made three interceptions and totaled 41 tackles. Including two for loss. He capped the season by playing in the Blue-Gray All-Star Game in Montgomery, Ala.

In 1986, Douglass was drafted by the Chicago Bears with the final pick of the eighth round. He played nine years for the Bears and two years for the New York Giants. Overall, he played in 139 games and totaled 274 tackles, 12 fumble recoveries, six interceptions and 2.5 sacks.

After retiring, Douglass moved into coaching and currently serves as the head coach at Springfield High School in Springfield, Ohio.

Douglass recently made headlines as at age 59 – 37 years after he left for the NFL – he returned to UK and finished his degree in liberal studies.

Douglass is also a member of the Coffeyville Community College Hall of Fame.

The Kentucky Pro Football Hall of Fame will also honor senior outside linebacker J.J. Weaver of Louisville, Ky., and the Letcher County High School football team with the Ron Butler Award for Character in Adversity.

From July 2020 to August 2021, Weaver lost his father to homicide, sustained a season-ending knee injury and then lost his beloved high school football coach to cancer. Inspired by the help he received with counseling, Weaver become an outspoken advocate for mental health and counseling. In September of 2023 and with help from the Kentucky Center for Grieving Children and Families, he started a peer-led grief counseling group on UK’s campus, the first of its kind.

Coach Matthews and his football team courageously assisted the people of Eastern Kentucky during the devastating floods of 2022.

Kentucky is the only state with its own pro football hall of fame. Its 109 current inductees include one woman, Phyllis George Brown who was the first female sportscaster for the NFL.

The Kentucky Pro Football Hall of Fame will celebrate its 22nd anniversary June 27-28 in Lexington, Ky. More details, including ticket information will be announced at a later date.

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