Western Kentucky football players returned to campus Thursday and will soon begin the offseason program under first-year coach Bobby Petrino.
Petrino conducted his first official team meeting at 9 p.m. Thursday.
The Hilltoppers finished 7-6 last season after losing 24-21 to Central Michigan in the Little Caesars Pizza Bowl in Detroit.
An official updated roster and the date of the team’s annual spring game is expected to be released in the coming weeks.
Hilltoppers seniors snubbed
Despite some impressive seasons by some WKU seniors, none will play in any college football all-star game.
The RAYCOM College Football All-Star Classic and the East-West Shrine Game are scheduled for Saturday while the annual Senior Bowl is scheduled for Jan. 26.
Jack Doyle, a 6-foot-6-inch, 250-pound tight end, caught 53 passes for 566 yards and five touchdowns this season. The Indianapolis native finished his career with more than 1,769 yards receiving and ranks second in program history with 162 receptions.
He was named first team all-Sun Belt Conference and considered the 14th best tight end for the 2013 class by NFLdraftscout.com.
Adam Smith, a 6-5, 325-pound offensive lineman, was on the preseason Rotary Lombardi Award list and started 45 games during his time on the Hill. Smith was named first team all-Sun Belt Conference and NFLdraftscout.com ranks him as the 27th best guard in the 2013 draft class.
Defensive end Quanterus Smith tore his ACL at Louisiana-Lafayette on Nov. 17.
Smith recorded 121⁄2 sacks and 181⁄2 tackles for loss as he became one of the top pass rushers in college football this season. He was named first team all-SBC and Sun Belt Defensive Player of the Year. Despite the injury, NFLdraftscout.com considers Smith (6-5, 250) the 15th best defensive end in this year’s class.
Quarterback Kawaun Jakes threw for 2,488 yards this season and 7,538 for his career. He recently joined the school’s basketball program for four games, but quit last week to focus on his football future. The St. Augustine, Fla., product finished first in program history in touchdown passes and percentage of passes completed, second in pass attempts and completions and third in passing yards and interceptions.