PHOTO: Tim Couch honored with special Maker's Mark bottle

PHOTO: Tim Couch honored with special Maker's Mark bottle

By Jerry Hinnen | Staff Writer

Most sports fans across the country likely remember Tim Couch as a notorious NFL draft bust first-and-foremost, but things are more than a little different in the Bluegrass State, where Couch -- a native of Hyden, Ky., who spurned offers from the nation's biggest and best football programs to play for his downtrodden home-state Wildcats -- is a beloved figure and rightfully revered as one of the greatest players in Kentucky history.

So it's no major surprise that for the 2012 edition of its charity bottle series, Kentucky-based whiskey distillery Maker's Mark will be honoring none other than Couch. The bottle:

Proceeds from the sales of the Couch edition bottles -- estimated to be as much as $200,000 --will go towards the Gill Heart Institute at the University of Kentucky Healthcare, which fights heart disease in rural eastern Kentucky.

"We are very proud that Maker's Mark, UK HealthCare and Keeneland [thoroughbred racing facility] have come together once again for this very worthy project," said Keeneland president Nick Nicholson. "We congratulate Tim Couch as this year's honoree. This initiative will be very important to people back home and many years from now, they will remember Tim Couch as not only an outstanding athlete but as a good person who works hard to make a difference in his community."

The 2009 bottle was famously dedicated to now-former Kentucky head football coachRich Brooks.


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