I’m telling you there’s a chance Blue Smith picks Kentucky over Ohio State, but the odds are not in the Wildcats’ favor.
For a long time, the Cats were the favorite to land the nation’s top-ranked athlete. The 6’6″ wide receiver from Dayton, Ohio received his first scholarship offer from Kentucky. Once his teammate, four-star defensive end Alex Reigelsperger, committed to UK, the Cats had another recruiter on the Wayne High School football team. Smith visited Lexington frequently throughout the spring and summer, and things were trending toward UK until about a month ago.
Things changed after Smith took a visit to Columbus on July 21. Urban Meyer initially wanted Smith to play tight end for the Buckeyes, which gave UK an advantage, but in that visit Meyer changed his tune and laid out a plan for Smith to play receiver.
Since then, every recruiting analyst has picked Smith to Ohio State. The Buckeyes currently have a 94-6 advantage in the 247 Crystal Ball. As Rivals’ Josh Helmholdt explained to Ben Roberts, there’s no certainty Smith picks Ohio State, it’s just hard to convince an in-state prospect to turn down the perennial powerhouse.
“If you think about it in horse racing terms: Ohio State is a closer. They close down the stretch, and it’s tough for kids in their own backyard to say no.”
Helmholdt added: “I don’t have enough intel to tell me he’s for sure going to Ohio State. It’s certainly been nip and tuck. Even Ohio State people aren’t going to say that, over the last five months, it’s been all Ohio State.
“It’s been a back and forth battle. So, it would not surprise me if he went with (UK) on Sunday. I don’t expect it. But, it wouldn’t surprise me.”
There’s a chance Kentucky fans will receive a spectacular surprise during Smith’s 1:30 game on ESPN, but don’t count on it.