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Which recruits are most important for UK football?


Currently UK has 23 known verbal commitments. While there are a few recruits who have work to do before gaining eligibility, most appear to be solid at this point in time.  Obviously a horrible season and rumors of a coaching change could impact each recruits decision.

Most people will tell you that one player doesn’t make or break a class. I’m starting to disagree with that theory.  Why?  If Randall Cobb doesn’t sign in the 2008 class, then how would UK’s offense have looked the past three seasons?  If Danny Trevathan doesn’t sign, how does the defense look?  Get my point?

While I really like how the 2012 class is shaping up, below are a few recruits that I feel are key for the future of UK football. These are the current commitments the staff must sign in February.

#1  Patrick Towles (QB)

Many people consider Patrick Towles to be the top in-state player in the 2012 class.  He is an easy candidate for Mr. Football.  Towles participated in the Elite 11 QB competition this summer and considered one of the top 25 QB’s in the country.  While Towles is committed, other schools are still calling. There are a lot of people in-state who tell me there hasn’t been this much excitement about a recruit since Tim Couch.

#2  Thomas Chapman (DT)

One of UK’s highest rated recruits by most recruiting services comes from Louisville.  Chapman is already a stud and has embraced the Big Blue Nation.  If the Cats are going to compete in the SEC, they must sign Chapman in February.  He is the type of player who can anchor the defensive line in the future.  He is already close to 300 lbs.  Anyone who thinks Charlie Strong isn’t working on Chapman is mistaken. Had he not suffered an injury last season, he would have even more schools calling.

#3  Shadrach Thornton (RB)

The running back holds several offers from various BCS schools.  Thornton is the type of running back the Cats need.  He is big, physical and will have the frame to hold up in the SEC.  While he is currently committed, the Cats still have work to do as he will take other visits.  Physically, he can compete at UK as a true freshman.

#4  Zack Blaylock (S)

Not often do programs get a two for one deal.  That’s exactly what UK got when the Blaylock twins committed.  Both are very good players and held multiple BCS offers.  Zack jumped out early in the recruiting process and picked up a few more offers than Daron, but now schools are calling again about both players.  I’m told South Carolina and Auburn want the twins to visit, but they remain solid to UK and will not take anymore visits.  Both kids have a great work ethic and do nothing but push each other everyday to become better.

#5  Jordan Watson (OL)

The offensive line is a huge priority for the Cats in the 2012 class. Many times these recruits are often overlooked, but Watson is impressive.  He was a teammate of Josh Clemons in Georgia and decided to join him in Lexington.  Watson could develop as a tackle at the next level, but I really see him playing inside. Again, the Cats beat out several BCS programs for Watson’s commitment.  In my opinion, he will be a key part of UK’s offensive line in the future.

#6 DeMarcus Sweat (WR)

Well, I tried to limit my list to five players, but couldn’t.  Why? DeMarcus Sweat is too good not to be mentioned.  He attended UK’s camp this summer and simply blew the staff away with his size and speed.  Sweat doesn’t get the attention he deserves because he plays on a loaded high school team that runs the ball.  He has returned several kick-off’s for touchdowns this season and has shown he has “big-play” written all over him.  Honestly, Sweat is probably good enough to play for UK today.

One thing we have seen this season is UK lacks playmakers. UK has several guys who have potential, but they are young.  If Joker Phillips is seriously going to compete in the SEC, he must continue to sign big time playmakers.  He can start by making sure the guys above remain committed and sign with UK in February.

As always, you can check out Bleed Blue Kentucky for more football information or follow me on Twitter.

Article written by Aaron Cordero

17 Comments for Which recruits are most important for UK football?

  1. mocha
    6:07 pm September 29, 2011 Permalink

    all of them.

  2. barn
    6:10 pm September 29, 2011 Permalink

    the ones we still don’t have

  3. Joker sucks
    6:21 pm September 29, 2011 Permalink

    The nation’s #1 class could come to UK and still go 0-12 as long as Joke….r is coaching. That guy must go!!

  4. Joker sucks
    6:25 pm September 29, 2011 Permalink

    Why isn’t “Big Blue Madness” campout on ESPN???? If unc or Puke had 500 tentfulls of crazy fans camping out just for a practice, it would be national news.

    Matt should contact his peeps at CBS and make this become a natinoally known story.

    GO BLUE!!!

  5. barn
    6:27 pm September 29, 2011 Permalink

    -3–disagree. 4 & 5 star players make mediocre coaches look real good

  6. MD
    6:31 pm September 29, 2011 Permalink

    Excellent summary

  7. Dakota
    6:32 pm September 29, 2011 Permalink

    What about Tyron Pearson? Offers from lsu Alabama? And I played against Thomas chapman in our scrimmage this year and dominated him. I’m 6’1 240. He is no sec player. Mark my word he won’t make it at kentucky

  8. Lex07
    6:42 pm September 29, 2011 Permalink

    The new head coach recruits are the most important.

  9. Beetle bum
    8:04 pm September 29, 2011 Permalink

    Not a fan of this kind of speculation.

  10. lexslamman
    8:33 pm September 29, 2011 Permalink

    Find someone who can catch the ball.

  11. Hal
    9:23 pm September 29, 2011 Permalink

    probably being a dick but “where would our offense be without cobb the past 3 years?” or “the defense without trevathan” leads one to believe we’re either not developing the talent around them or the talent around them is overrated to begin with…..

  12. JBR
    11:17 pm September 29, 2011 Permalink

    Another football post that says nothing…because we have nothing but speculation. #3 has a point…even best players, if they play with no heart, emotion, intensity…well, they just don’t get it done. Joker is not a leader, just not his personality. So, Aaron, tell Messenger good try, but he can’t dictate how people think over here like he does on the “UK yes man site”. All you have to look at, in the opposite direction, is Boise St. Very average classes, not often ahead of ours, but the team has discipline, intelligence, plays hard with heart and intensity…and they win, and win, and win…even when they play the big boys. That is called coaching people. Look into that Barnhart.

  13. Tom Seaver
    1:07 am September 30, 2011 Permalink

    7 I head-slapped you in a scrimmage the week after you scrimmaged Chapman and made you cry like a sissy. You kept running your mouth about Chapman, so I put one upside your head. You went down like a bag of scabs.

  14. JDaws
    2:55 am September 30, 2011 Permalink

    #7. I remember when I played against your dad in High School. I told him your mom was carrying a big headed sissy in her tummy. Your dad then tried to take it to me all game long. Of course I dominated him in the trenches and went home with your mother after the game. I then impregnated her. Thats why you were born with two Vaginas.

  15. Bulldawg
    3:26 am September 30, 2011 Permalink

    2 vaginas? Looking for a date? I know a nice little nursing home we can go to…

  16. Ben
    9:06 am September 30, 2011 Permalink

    It really depends if this staff will use the new guys the right away, or make them wait their turn. Another year of Newton starting at quarterback, and Joker will be gone. Joker cannot take two losing seasons in a row and survive.

    There is something wrong with this team that is not being talked about! It started about mid season last year and continues today. The coaches seem to say the right things, but the players are not responding in any area. The fans can sense the negativity on this team, but no one is willing to talk about the real problem.

    Next year will be the last opportunity to right the ship! We will see what this staff has the ability to do! This all depends on fan support for the remainder of this year to see if Joker and Company survive that long.

  17. tbd4567
    3:36 pm September 30, 2011 Permalink

    I sense that #3 and #16 are telling the truth. This team is said by coaches and media to be the most talented in a long time and has the lowest quality execution I have seen in 20 years. Joker is responsible for all of it now that he has been a leading recruiter for at least 5 years. Yet, they still cannot execute. I say let him go now. The reason for poor execution must be placed at the feet of the coaches and the coaches must be placed at Joker’s feet. We should not tolerate a drop off in execution in Joker’s first 2 years as head coach. At this point we should not even be in the SEC. We aren’t good enough to even compete there.