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Cardinals Hurt, Doran ink with Kentucky Wesleyan

Mayfield football players Leo Doran and Kyle Hurt signed to play for Kentucky Wesleyan College in Owensboro on Monday. Shown at the signings are (from left) Kimberly Doran, Al Tee Doran, Leo Doran, Mayfield head coach and athletic director Joe Morris, Johnny Hicks, Kyle Hurt, Jonda Hurt and Brian Hurt.

KIM HAMBY/Mayfield Independent Schools

By ERIC WALKER ewalker@mayfield-messenger.com

Kyle Hurt and Leo Doran have had successful runs at Mayfield. Now, they and their new football coaches are looking to carry that level of success over to Kentucky Wesleyan College.

On Monday, the seniors signed to play for the Panthers, who finished 2-8 last season. In the eyes of Mayfield head coach Joe Morris, KWC got a find in his two seniors.

"Those guys have been very special in our program. Those guys have worked really hard and I'm really happy for them," he said. "They've been a part of a lot of wins here at Mayfield High School and we're going to miss them. Kentucky Wesleyan got two real good football players."

A three-year starter who also saw playing time as a freshman, the 6-foot, 198-pound Hurt was named to the Associated Press All-State first team. He also made the second team on the (Louisville) Courier-Journal's all-state list and was among the "Class of the Commonwealth" selected by the (Lexington) Herald-Leader.

Hurt also represented Kentucky in this season's "Best of the Bluegrass" against metro Louisville players, as well as in the Border Bowl against Tennessee seniors. Hurt also was awarded the All-Purchase Player of the Year by the Paducah Sun.

The numbers back up his accolades with 152 tackles and two interceptions as a linebacker, along with 414 yards rushing and 15 touchdowns as a fullback during Mayfield's state 2A runner-up year. That helped garner him several team awards, including being named Mayfield's most valuable player.

Hurt, who also contemplated Georgetown College and Lindsey Wilson, said he connected better with the Panther coaches, which played into his decision.

"I felt like that would be the best position to succeed in life and where I felt like I needed to go," he said.

Doran said Kentucky Wesleyan, located in Owensboro, was also the best fit for him.

"I asked God and He took me there," he said of his pick along with Georgetown and Lindsey Wilson. "It felt like the best fit, coaching-wise, and with the players."

Doran, at 6-feet, 4-inches and 228 pounds, was a key piece on both offensive and defensive lines with his size and experience. One of The Mayfield Messenger Lineman of the Year recipients, he made 441 of 631 blocking attempts his senior season and also improved from a two-tackle junior year to recording 18 and a sack.

Named to the AP all-state honorable mention roster, as well as the local All-Purchase team, Doran said he has remained committed to the weight room to increase his power and mobility for college line play.

Hurt said Wesleyan had recruited several linebackers so he may move to the safety slot.

"It depends on where they need me," he said. "Wherever they need me, I'm going to play."