- Jess Curry
- Hometown (Last School)
- Portsmouth, VA
- August 4, 1932
From the 1954 University of Kentucky Basketball Media Guide:
One of only two non-Kentuckians on the Wildcat squad this season, Curry came to Kentucky with a great high school reputation as an All-Virginia selection in both the cage sport and football . . . He played forward as a schoolboy basketeer, but his size (5-11 and 167) caused him to be converted to a guard at U.K. last season . . . Although he was an All-State quarterback, Curry never went out for college foot-ball . . . He’s a fast, driving type of player who shoots with good accuracy from the outside . . . Should see considerable action this year.
From “It’s Been a Great Journey,” The News and Advance, December 11, 2008
That competitive nature would take Curry to the University of Kentucky, bypassing scholarship opportunities to play for Notre Dame, North Carolina, Tennessee and Richmond – all of which wanted him to play quarterback.
His first year at Kentucky, Curry played basketball, baseball and track. It would be the only year he played basketball, and it was a memorable one, as the team went 25-0.
Curry played for legendary Wildcats coach Adolph Rupp, and that was a story within itself.
In football, Curry played on the 7-3 team that was invited to the Gator Bowl. He was still irked that he was at halfback and could not play quarterback. “I like the ball in my hands,” he said. “I like it when it’s going and getting tough – that’s me. I can’t take it when I don’t have the ball in my hands.”
From there, Curry played two years of baseball, which did not have scholarship players. In those two seasons, the Wildcats were 16-25, but Curry was 12-3 on the mound.