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What Wan’Dale Robinson could mean for the Kentucky football team



For the second time in three years, Kentucky is courting Wan’Dale Robinson. In 2018 Kentucky’s Mr. Football initially said yes to Mark Stoop and Vince Marrow. After a change of heart, Robinson went to Nebraska. Despite the devastating news, UK’s staff never burnt any bridges, leaving the door open for a possible return. Could it happen?

As most football recruits will tell you, it’s hard to say no to Vince Marrow. It must be even more difficult to say no to Marrow twice. On Monday Robinson entered the transfer portal with three years of eligibility remaining.

“Being away from my mother and not seeing her during the season hurt me,” Robinson said. “I intend to find a place closer to my mother and family that will still allow me to achieve my dreams and goals.”

The Wildcats are the early favorites in the 2021 Wan’Dale Robinson sweepstakes. If Robinson does return home to play for Kentucky, here’s what he would mean for the 2021 Kentucky football team.

A Wide Receiver or a Running Back

Robinson can do just about anything you ask of him on a football field. If UK needs an explosive, change of pace running back, Robinson can do it. Need an easy toss and catch that can turn into a huge gain? Wan’Dale can take a screen or a pitch-pass and make people miss. He’s a slot receiver that isn’t afraid to make plays across the middle of the field.

The question is less about what Wan’Dale can do and what offensive coordinators should do with his versatile skill-set. Football junkies will tell you that Scott Frost grossly misused Robinson, failing to consistently get him the ball in space where he is at his best. If he comes to Kentucky, I would not expect him to carry the ball unless it’s a jet sweep.

Lethal Returner 

There were a few grievances made by UK fans throughout the 2020 season, particularly on special teams. Most of the errors did not occur in the return game, but the return game did not add much to Kentucky’s attack. It’s a stark contrast to the playmaking ability Lynn Bowden brought to the position in 2018. He single-handedly sparked a comeback at Missouri and gave UK an early lead in the Citrus Bowl by returning punts for scores. Robinson would once again give Kentucky an X-factor on special teams.

Another Reliable Option for Liam Coen  

Kentucky’s offense will look much different in 2021 than it did in 2020. There will be new coaches in the trenches and in the backfield. There will be a new play-caller. There will be a new quarterback. For all of the new guys to succeed, they need to be surrounded by experienced talent.

There is help in the trenches with three starters, including All-American Darian Kinnard, returning. Kentucky’s tight end room might be one of the deepest in the SEC. Kentucky’s leading receiver in 2020, Josh Ali, is also back for another season. Whoever is under center to start the season for Coen would love to have another reliable target and Robinson could be that guy.

Game-Changing Athlete 

The previous 500 words were used as a long way to explain something simple: Robinson is an elite athlete. They say “you can’t coach speed.” You also can’t coach the agility and acceleration Robinson has on a football field.

Wan’Dale Robinson is the kind of athlete you need to have to win in the SEC, yet UK has struggled to consistently recruit that kind of player to Lexington. When Stoops and Marrow got Lynn Bowden to campus, history-making wins followed. Robinson is a caliber of player that can take the Wildcats to new heights if he chooses to transfer to Kentucky.

Article written by Nick Roush

"Look upon the doughnut, and not upon the hole." @RoushKSR

17 Comments for What Wan’Dale Robinson could mean for the Kentucky football team

  1. blueballs80
    3:37 pm January 11, 2021 Permalink

    Didn’t he throw shade at the football program after committing to Nebraska? I wonder if he still feels the same way.

    • 4everUKBlue
      4:02 pm January 11, 2021 Permalink

      Yes he did, we don’t need him.

    • itsfootballtimeinthebluegrass
      5:24 pm January 11, 2021 Permalink


      We do need him.

    • ClutchCargo
      4:05 pm January 11, 2021 Permalink

      There’s no such thing as pride in recruiting. If we can get him, I say bring him on. We’ll find a way to forgive him later. lol

    • 2andToodleLoo
      4:30 pm January 11, 2021 Permalink

      Totally agree Clutch. However, I’d be cautious at him being all in on UK until he signs the dotted line. I could see OSU or even UL getting him.

    • 4everUKBlue
      5:31 pm January 11, 2021 Permalink

      We need him but I don’t like the way he handled himself the last go round.

  2. UKinIN
    4:04 pm January 11, 2021 Permalink

    We would be fools to pay any attention to this until Robinson announces for UK and even then we may want to wait until he actually shows up for spring football. He could be a great kid, and he appears to have real talent, but fool me once …

    • WILDCATS1968
      4:07 pm January 11, 2021 Permalink

      Well until today it was “He is not even in the transfer portal, and people are thinking he is coming here.” Well, what if I told you it is all ready a done deal ? Like, he is back and headed to Lexington ???

    • UKinIN
      4:10 pm January 11, 2021 Permalink

      I still say proceed with caution. It would be great if he ended up at UK but I tend to wait for an official announcement. Until then anything can change.

  3. WILDCATS1968
    4:06 pm January 11, 2021 Permalink

    Oh, do not get it twisted, we need him. Well at least a player like him. But this is boy sports, if Coach Stoops is fine bringing him in (He is), then we should not have a problem with it. Several players over time did not come to UK at first then ended up here. I can think of 2 in basketball right off the top of my head, Travis Ford (Missouri) and Patrick Sparks (WKU), not I get it, they where not the same situation. The only people who matter is Marrow and Stoops,, well Robinson to.

  4. Grazilla
    4:19 pm January 11, 2021 Permalink

    Come on down Wandale.

    • Dr. Tom
      4:29 pm January 11, 2021 Permalink

      Don’t forget the apostrophe!! Love that name (Wan’Dale).

  5. kyle heavy
    4:50 pm January 11, 2021 Permalink

    This is a done deal. Either KSR is playing coy or completely out of the loop.

    • itsfootballtimeinthebluegrass
      5:25 pm January 11, 2021 Permalink


    • kyle heavy
      5:48 pm January 11, 2021 Permalink

      It doesn’t cost much to join a premium membership and to get this kind of news. That’s what KSR normally does – regurgitate premium insider info. I guess Jack Pilgrim is off tonight.

  6. Wade
    4:57 pm January 11, 2021 Permalink

    Cards commit

  7. 859bornandraised
    8:46 pm January 12, 2021 Permalink

    Come on home lil dawg we SURE can use you…Go CATS!!!