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Player Preview: Samuel Anaele

Kentucky went into South Florida and will sign one of the nation’s top players. Samuel Anaele brings an elite mixture of size, athletic ability, motor, and attitude. Both Rivals and 247Sports rated him as a top 10 defensive end in the nation. He doesn’t appear to love the glitz and glam of the recruiting cycle and prefers to let his play on the field do his talking. I like that. 

He’s virtually new to the game of football after initially focusing on basketball. The one-time Miami commit is an elite pass rusher and could have a significant impact on the immediate and long-term future of the Wildcat’s defense. 

Defensive coordinator Brad White is a former NFL coach with a proven track record of developing edge defenders at the professional and collegiate ranks. Watching Anaele’s development will be fun to watch.  

Anele with Josh Allen last spring on an unofficial visit, via @coachtunsil.


Listed at 6’4, 250-pounds with preferred arm length for a strong-side defensive end. Runs in the 4.8/4.9 range in the 40. Has a body frame that could easily pack on 20-30 pounds while maintaining speed and quickness. 

Film Study

  • 30-second prospect (Turn on tape and watch for less than a minute to gauge an elite level of play).  
  • Quick twitch athlete. 
  • Has all the tools to become a multi-year standout. 
  • Elite off the edge. Gaining the understanding of leverage. 
  • High motor player with elite talent. 


Strong-side defensive end with the potential of eventually playing with his hand in the dirt after gaining weight and strength. The Cats have depth at SDE, but keeping this elite talent on the sideline for a season could be difficult. However, a year of strength and conditioning along with position specific fundamental development would greatly benefit Anaele and the program. 

What does all this mean?

Will have a learning curve from being new to the game. However, talents like this are extremely rare and highly coveted. A description of having a high ceiling would be understating Anaele’s potential. His best football is in the future. 

Kentucky Football 2020 Recruiting Class Player Previews: Torrance Davis, Rickey Hyatt Jr., John Young, Beau AllenD’Eryk Jackson, Deondre BufordAndru PhillipsKalil BranhamTre’vonn RybkaJuTahn McClainIzayah CummingsEarnest SandersJustin Rogers

Article written by Freddie Maggard

Former University of Kentucky Quarterback and Andy Griffith Fan Club President

1 Comment for Player Preview: Samuel Anaele

  1. JASUN74
    6:21 am December 18, 2019 Permalink

    Freddie, thanks buddy for everything you do for the fans of Kentucky man. I really mean it , you’ve been one of my favorites from the first time you hit the field here. I know I’m not alone when I say I appreciate you a lot brother and glad you’re writing again.

    Ok, now to Anaele! Wow !! I remember the first time you talked about Josh, what his potential was and I’ll tell you what, it’s close between the two. I don’t know if he’ll turn out like J ALLEN, no one does, but if he has close to the same work ethic that Josh has he’ll be a star before he leaves Kentucky.

    He’s already further along with his body and if he can get those hands right and all the technical stuff, we’ve got ourselves another big time game disrupter. Just the way Josh could take over the game almost single handed by making his guy jump was amazing and helped us soo many times.

    Anyway, I just see a lot of him in this kid, and with you liking him that much, I think he’ll do big things. Thanks again Freddie and you have a good one.