The Kentucky football staff has a busy few weeks ahead of them. Today, they are entertaining Ben Bradley, a top JuCo defensive tackle who will announce his decision on Monday. Next weekend may be the most important weekend in Kentucky football history, with nine 4- and 3-star recruits on campus, including Asiantii Woulard and Ra’Shaad Samples.
Let’s take a look at each recruit coming in over the next few weeks and the chances they become a Cat:
Ben Bradley – Defensive Tackle; 6’2″, 315 lbs.; Hutchinson Community College, Hutchinson, Kansas; @IamAmbition98
Former Tennessee commit
Bradley decommitted from Tennessee last week and is now considering the Cats, along with Auburn, Missouri, and Nebraska. Bradley will also visit Auburn this weekend and will announce on Monday so he can immediately enroll in classes.
Asianti Woulard – Dual-Threat QB; 6’3″, 205 lbs.; Winter Park, Florida; @Asiantii_2
Former USF commit
Rivals: 4-Star, #4 Dual-Threat QB, #120 overall
ESPN: 4-Star, #1 Dual-Threat QB, #146 overall
Woulard’s courtship by the Wildcats has picked up over the last couple of weeks after he sent a tape to Coach Stoops and staff following his decommitment. Based on the news coming out of his camp lately, there is definitely a mutual interest between the two sides. His dad told reporters last week that if his visit to UK goes well, a commitment may come soon after. Woulard has been impressive in his two years as a QB and won the MVP of the Elite 11 QB Camp after being the 24th QB selected. Look no further than Johnny Football at Texas A&M to see how well a mobile quarterback can work in the Air Raid offense. Woulard’s commitment would be absolutely huge for the Cats.
Jason Hatcher – Defensive End; 6’2″, 240 lbs.; Louisville, Kentucky; @ROCK_NATION_6
Current USC Commit (recruited by Tee Martin)
Rivals: 4-star, #7 DE, #215 overall
ESPN: 4-star, @15 DE, #182 overall
Hatcher is a powerful, bull-rushing DE that would be great in the Wildcats’ defensive end rotation. Stoops and company can sell Hatcher on the past success of Stoops’ pass rushers and also the idea that he would be immediately offered playing time. Prying Hatcher from USC will be a long shot, but even getting a visit from the top DE bodes well for the Kentucky-Trinity pipeline.
Ra’Shaad Samples – Wide Receiver; 6’0″, 170 lbs.; Texas; @10justscored
Current Oklahoma State commit
Rivals: 4-Star, #35 WR
ESPN: 4-Star, #25 WR, #197 overall
After Woulard, Samples is definitely the biggest recruiting name on this list. He is currently committed to Oklahoma State, but has said in the past that Neal Brown, who recruited Samples at Texas Tech, was the coach who he felt the best connection with, which has caused him to give the Wildcats a look before National Signing Day. On Twitter, Ra’Shaad has definitely felt the love from the Big Blue Nation, tweeting his thanks for their support almost daily. Samples may be a slight longshot for the ‘Cats given his commitment to another Air Raid offense in Oklahoma State, but Brown’s relationship with him gives UK a chance. He said it himself, he want UK fans to make next weekend a “memorable” one for him.
Blake McClain – Cornerback; 5’11”, 181 lbs.; Winter Park, Florida
Current Kentucky commit
Rivals: 3-star, #63 CB
ESPN: 3-star, #64 CB
Despite committing to Kentucky on June 27th, McClain visited Pitt on December 7th because of the Cats’ coaching change. McClain cited his family’s relationship with Joker Phillips as a primary reason for his commitment, so hopefully Stoops and company can make a good impression next weekend. The same goes for his talented 4-star teammate Asiantii Woulard, who he’s bringing with him.
Janarion Grant – Wide Receiver; 5’9″, 165 lbs.; Dade City, Florida
Rivals: 3-star, #60 WR
ESPN: 3-star, #109 WR
Elite Scouting Services President Charles Fishbein recently said this of Grant: “Janarion Grant is a stud, just flat out explosive. He’s basically your version of Timmy Brown. He’s about 5-10, very explosive and can score from anywhere on the field. Anybody you talk to from that area will tell you he’s a big-time football player. I think he can play running back, slot receiver, special teams, help out on punt and kick returns. The kid is one of the best players that no one really talks about down here.”
Why is Kentucky involved? Chad Scott, who Neal Brown brought with him from Texas Tech. Scott had been recruiting Grant for the Red Raiders. Fun fact: Grant says he likes to fish but doesn’t “mess around with sharks.”
Jojo Kemp – All-Purpose Back; 5’11”, 185 lbs.; DeLand, Florida; @J_Kemp4
Former USF commit
Rivals: 3-star, #10 APB
ESPN: 4-star, #30 RB
Kemp was interested in the Cats before the coaching change, and has said the Cats have “been on me since Day 1.” He’s a dynamic athlete with the potential to play a variety of positions, and catches the ball very well out of the backfield. Kemp visited Pitt on December 7th. ESPN college football recruiting analyst Corey Long says he thinks the Cats are in the mix for him, along with Asiantii Woulard.
Aregeros Turner – All-Purpose Back; 5’11”, 180 lbs.; Akron, Ohio; @GOD2Ghosts
Former Cincinnati commit
Rivals: 3-star, #11 APB
ESPN: 3-star, #119 RB
Vince Marrow has been a busy man since joining Stoops’ staff. One of his first visits was to Aregeros Turner, who decommitted from the Bearcats after Butch Jones left for Tennessee. Turner liked what Marrow had to say so much that he’s coming to visit.
Kyle Meadows – Offensive Tackle; 6’5″, 275 lbs.; West Chester, Ohio;
Rivals: 3-star, #45 OT
ESPN: 3-star, #42 OT
Meadows visited Louisville on December 14th Oklahoma on November 9th, and has also set up a visit to West Virginia on the 18th. Stoops and company reportedly covet Meadows, but worry grades will be an issue. Teams that have offered him include: Louisville, West Virginia, Akron, Florida State, Illinois, Indiana, Kansas, Kentucky, Marshall, North Carolina State, Ohio, Pittsburgh, Purdue, and Toledo.
Antoine Miles – Defensive End; 6’3″, 250 lbs.; Canton, Ohio, @Capt_Situation
Former Nebraska commit
ESPN: 3-star, #54 DE
Miles was recruited at Nebraska by Vince Marrow and has opened his recruitment back up since Marrow joined Stoops’ staff. His relationship with Marrow makes a commitment to the Cats next weekend a legit possibility, and even a lock according to some analysts. He also has a visit to Purdue lined up for January 18th.
Jaranta Lewis – QB/ATH; 6’0″, 177 lbs.; Weston, Florida
Lewis has not been ranked by any recruiting services, but is a talented dual-threat quarterback known for his quickness, arm strength and accuracy. He led his team to a state championship this past season.
We’re not done yet. Here’s a list of recruits visiting campus on January 18th, profiles of which Will Totten will have for you tomorrow:
Stafon McCray – 3-star RB who lists the Cats as his leader
Javess Blue – 3-star JuCo WR formerly committed to Texas Tech (#NealBrownEffect)
Jeff Badet – 3-star WR formerly committed to USF
Marquex Valdes – 3-star WR
DeAngelo Yancey – 3-star WR currently committed to Kentucky
Nate Willis – 3-star JuCo CB- Arizona
Raphael Cox – 2-star JuCo DT
Jarran Reed – 4-star JuCo DT
Get ’em, Stoops!