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WUKY SportsPage UK Athletics' Tony Neely

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Tony Neely
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On the eve of what many fans hope to be a successful football season, Keith talks with Tony Neely, assistant athletics director for athletics communications and public relations at the University of Kentucky. In this conversation, he talks about his relationships with coaches and players, the ever-changing environment in sports communications, and the occasional bad-news situations that every public relations official encounters. He also pays tribute to C.M. Newton, former UK athletics director and Vanderbilt basketball coach, who had an important role in his career. A breakfast meeting with Newton and former Alabama basketball coach Wimp Sanderson provided a memorable experience.

Tony Neely is assistant athletics director for athletics communications and public relations at the University of Kentucky. He came to UK in 1994 after working in sports information at Vanderbilt for 16 years, starting when he was a student at Vandy. He has earned many honors over his career, including a special 25-year recognition from CoSIDA, the college sports information directors association. He is especially well-known to Kentucky media for his work with football, but he is involved with the entire UK athletics program. He oversees communications when UK hosts an NCAA event, and has been a key figure in the establishment and development of the UK Athletics Hall of Fame. In this conversation, he talks about his relationships with coaches and players, the ever-changing environment in sports communications, and the occasional bad-news situations that every public relations official encounters. He also pays tribute to C.M. Newton, former UK athletics director and Vanderbilt basketball coach, who had an important role in his career. A breakfast meeting with Newton and former Alabama basketball coach Wimp Sanderson provided a memorable experience.

Keith Elkins has an extensive background in broadcasting and public relations. He retired in 2017 after nine years as director of broadcasting and media relations for the Lexington Legends. He was the radio play-by-play announcer for the Legends, who played a 140-game schedule in the South Atlantic League as a class A affiliate of the Kansas City Royals. For 15 seasons, he was heard on halftime and postgame shows as the studio anchor on University of Kentucky basketball broadcasts on the UK sports network.Keith is a former television sports anchor and reporter with WLEX-TV in Lexington. Later, as a member of the University of Kentucky public relations staff, he produced and narrated many television features and promotional announcements on behalf of the university. Keith also has served as director of public relations at Transylvania University and worked in marketing communications with Wyncom, Inc. of Lexington. He returned to UK as director of communications in the UK College of Engineering, and was the editor of the College of Engineering alumni magazine, Quadrangle. He has served as host of the WUKY Sports Page podcast since 2019.Keith is a native of Bedford, Indiana, a graduate of the University of Kentucky and a longtime Lexington resident. He has two adult sons and two grandsons.