Morehead State came calling. So did Lindsey Wilson College.
However, when it was all said and done, West Jessamine football standout Robby Irgang decided to take the road less traveled as a preferred walk-on to play for the University of Kentucky in the fall.
“I had a lot of coaches who talked to (University of Kentucky) coaches for more, and they were really pushing me to go as high as I possibly could,” Irgang said. “When the opportunity became available, I chose to be a preferred walk-on at UK.”
West football coach Yancey Marcum said Kentucky was getting a diamond in the rough and he suspects Irgang will quickly get noticed.
“UK saw his film and saw some of the things he could do and called down and talked to me,” Marcum said. “They had filled their scholarships, and they offered him a preferred walk-on status. That’s about the biggest deal you can get, unless you can get a full ride to a D-I school. That means they want you there.”
Irgang said he knows his work is cut out for him if he is to get the coaching staff’s attention and earn a scholarship.
“I have to gain weight, and I have to get up to 230 or 235 (pounds) so I can really make an impact on the SEC (Southeastern Conference) level,” Irgang said. “And I need to keep my speed with that weight. I had a 4.68 (40-yard dash) time.”
Irgang said he sees himself playing linebacker at UK but knows his first chance will come on special teams.
“I’m going to try to work to get a position on special teams — just to get on the team,” Irgang said.
Irgang said he plans on studying business or marketing while at UK.
Marcum said Irgang’s biggest challenge will simply be the speed and size of players at the SEC level.
“Everything has to improve,” Marcum said. “What he’s going to have to deal with is the size of these players he’s playing with and the speed that the players of that size move. It’s going to be a big adjustment, (but) he’s such a hard worker, and I think he will do the things he needs to do.”
Irgang made his announcement at West Jessamine High School’s media center Wednesday, Feb. 20, surrounded by teammates and family.
Kentucky finished last season with a 2-10 record, going winless in conference play.