Old news now: Mark Stoops and Co. have arrived in Lexington and made a full 180 on the recruiting trail. This much we know. We also thought Joker Phillips knew what he was doing, but no offense to the old regime, but he simply cannot hold a candle to Stoops. Without even taking the field for a single game, Mark Stoops has signed more four-star recruits in the last two classes than in the last ten years under Rich Brooks and Joker Phillips combined.
Stoops has recognized the rebuilding process is going to take some time, but he has hit the ground running regardless, hauling in key players — a least one four-star at every major position group on the field, including QB, RB, WR, OL, DL, DE, LB, and DB.
While Stoops is addressing needs at nearly every position, what is the rest of the SEC up to? What I have here is a spreadsheet of the 2014 commits by position group. Each is scored based on an average (total stars Ã· number of players) plus the sum of the total recruits at each position. Then each team is ranked accordingly. First is the team rankings based on offensive positions…
Most interesting here is that more than half the league has a four-star quarterback on board for the 2014 class, making an eight-way tie for first. Lining up behind at running back, Kentucky fairs well as Georgia leads the way as the only school in the SEC with a five-star commit yet, and that comes in the form of Sony Michel. Kentucky has a solid grip on second with a duo of four-star backs coming next year. Wide receiver is the same story, with Thaddeus Snodgrass headlining the group just behind Tennessee.
And on defense, Kentucky is really beefing up and fairing well against the rest of the conference. Defensive tackle will receive a big boost if (and when) Matt Elam commits to the Wildcats, and if Denzel Ware’s ratings increase according to Rivals there will be a boost at defensive end as well.
Less important in the grand scheme of things are athletes and kickers, and Kentucky doesn’t rank here, as is the same with a large portion of the conference. But for the sake of completeness, I had to include it.
Of course the 2014 recruiting season is far from over and there are plenty of five-star players that have yet to commit. That will undoubtedly alter these numbers come signing day. But as for now, the Wildcats are excelling on the recruiting trail, and doing a great job at filling needs across the board. If this were any other year in the past, the numbers would not look nearly this good.