Wayne County High School students Riley Woods and Lane Turner are headed to the University of the Cumberlands for their postsecondary education with the help of football scholarships based on athletics and academics.
“We’re excited to have them. Both of these kids are strong students and naturally a good fit for our program,” said Head Patriot Football Coach Matt Rhymer.
Coach Rhymer said Cumberland has one of the top teams in the Mid-South Conference. He is expecting a great recruiting class. He has a great team coming back; therefore, great expectations abound regarding a possible championship.
“We love in-state students and are looking forward to working with these Wayne County players,” said Coach Rhymer.
Coach Rhymer watched both local students play during football season. “I saw Riley had a special ability to kick the ball very accurately. He has a strong leg and is great on PAT’s and making field goals.”
He also said Riley’s family has been connected to their school with his mom and older brother Landry, both being Cumberland graduates. Riley is the son of Cynthia and Rodney Woods.
“He is obviously a good fit for our school,” said Rhymer.
Riley has a 4.0 GPA and was named an Academic All Region Basketball player this year, after playing in the forward position the last two years. He has accumulated 29 hours of college credit, already. He has been a member of FCA for three years. He would like to start his own business one day and will be majoring in Business.
He has played football for the Cardinals for three years. He was first team all state as a punter/kicker in three different polls which included: AP, Bluegrass Preps and Courier Journal.
“During my high school football career, I was 14 for 19 field goals,” said Riley. Most recently, he was perfect on extra points his senior year.
“Cumberland is a great fit for me. I really like the coach and a couple of my teammates are attending there too,” said Woods. “And, it’s close to home.”
Woods added, “I really appreciate Coach Shawn Thompson and the Wayne County coaching staff, as well as everyone on the football team.”
Coach Rhymer was equally happy to sign Lane Turner, the son of Lance and Kristi Turner.
“Lane is a great player. He is very competitive and did a lot for his team,” said Coach Rhymer. “He stood out as a gutsy player. He is a good student from a good family. We’re excited to have him.”
Lane has a 3.85 GPA and will have close to 30 college hours by the end of this school year. Besides playing football, he also played baseball where he covered left field all four years of high school.
The defensive back and wide receiver has played the corner since his sophomore year where he had a lot of great plays and moments. He traveled to the state finals three years in a row with his team, experiencing three regional titles and two district titles.
“I had 10 career interceptions,” said Lane.
“I feel like Cumberland is the right place for me,” he said. Since Math and Science are his strongest subjects, he plans to major in Engineering and participate in a special partnership between the University of the Cumberlands and the University of Kentucky.
“I’ve always had an interest in knowing how things work and how to improve on things,” said Lane.
Barrett Hutchinson is another local football player who recently signed to play college football at the University of the Cumberlands. Other local football players Stetson Simpson signed with Campbellsville College and Lorenzo Linsey received a scholarship to Georgetown University, located near Washington D.C.
“This is a tremendous amount of scholarships for a school our size. This is just a testament to our football program and student athletes. All together, these football guys will be receiving three-quarters of a million dollars towards their educations,” noted Wayne County Schools Athletic Director Kevin Jones.
“That’s pretty significant,” said Jones.
Riley Woods with his family Rodney and Cynthia Woods and brother Peyton
Riley signing to attend the University of the Cumberlands
Head Patriot Football Coach Matt Rhymer and WCHS Cardinal Coach Shawn Thompson congratulated Riley
Lane Turner surrounded by his parents Lance and Kristi Turner and his sister Jade
Lane Turner signing while his family looked on
Lane Turner with University of the Cumberlands Coach Matt Rhymer and WCHS Coach Shawn Thompson
Football players show support for those going to play for University of the Cumberlands