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The Current State of UK’s 2016 Football Recruiting Class

While you were devouring hot dogs and firing whistlin’ bungholes, spleen splitters, whisker biscuits, honkey lighters, hoosker doos, hoosker don’ts, cherry bombs and nipsy daisers at the lake over the weekend, Kash Daniel became Mark Stoops’ 19th commitment in the 2016 recruiting class. Daniel’s pledge bumped Kentucky up to 16th in 247Sports’ team rankings and sixth in the Southeastern Conference. The four-star linebacker became the fifth in-state commit in the class, six shy of Ohio’s 11 prospects with hard commitments to UK.

Tonight, as we recover from the long and exhausting weekend, let’s take a quick look at the 19 young men who make up the current state of Kentucky’s 2016 recruiting class. Some may leave before National Signing Day, but with quality leadership at the top of the class, it’s not crazy to think it will stay intact while adding more top talent.

*****

Hard Commitments:

19

By State:

Ohio: 11
Kentucky: 5
Alabama: 1
Arizona: 1
Georgia: 1

By Position:

Offensive Line: 3
Defensive Line: 3
Defensive Back: 3
Athlete: 2
Linebacker: 2
Tight End: 2
Punter: 1
Running Back: 1
Quarterback: 1
Wide Receiver: 1

The Commits:

Landon Young
Offensive Tackle
20090120040123!Free_Blue_Star20090120040123!Free_Blue_Star20090120040123!Free_Blue_Star20090120040123!Free_Blue_Star
6-7, 270 lbs.
Lexington, KY (Lafayette)

Top247: 99 | 13 OT
247 Sports Composite: 121 | 14 OT
Rivals: 149 | 13 OT
ESPN: 150 | 17 OT
Scout: 202 | 18 OT

 

Drake Jackson
Center
20090120040123!Free_Blue_Star20090120040123!Free_Blue_Star20090120040123!Free_Blue_Star20090120040123!Free_Blue_Star
6-2, 288 lbs.
Versailles, KY (Woodford County)

Top247: 71 | 1 C
247 Sports Composite: 149 | 2 C
Rivals: 244 | 2 C
ESPN: 271 | 4 C
Scout: 102 | 1 C

 

Kash Daniel
Inside Linebacker
20090120040123!Free_Blue_Star20090120040123!Free_Blue_Star20090120040123!Free_Blue_Star20090120040123!Free_Blue_Star
6-1, 235 lbs.
Paintsville, KY (Paintsville)

Top247: 96 | 2 ILB
247 Sports Composite: 484 | 16 ILB
Rivals: — | 15 ILB
ESPN: —
Scout:  | 21 ILB

 

Jordan Griffin
Cornerback
20090120040123!Free_Blue_Star20090120040123!Free_Blue_Star20090120040123!Free_Blue_Star
6-1, 170 lbs.
Jonesboro, GA (Jonesboro)

Top247: 285 | 29 CB
247 Sports Composite: 477 | 42 CB
Rivals: — | 38 CB
ESPN: — | 23 CB
Scout: — | 82 CB

 

Dakota Holtzclaw
Tight End
20090120040123!Free_Blue_Star20090120040123!Free_Blue_Star20090120040123!Free_Blue_Star
6-7, 215 lbs.
Columbus, OH (Worthington Kilbourne)

Top247: 931 | 43 TE
247 Sports Composite: 730 | 34 TE
Rivals: —
ESPN: — | 20 TE
Scout: — | 29 TE

 

Tobias Gilliam
Cornerback
20090120040123!Free_Blue_Star20090120040123!Free_Blue_Star20090120040123!Free_Blue_Star
6-0, 185 lbs.
Dayton, OH (Wayne)

Top247: 921 | 87 CB
247 Sports Composite: 858 | 85 CB
Rivals: — | 44 CB
ESPN: — | 44 CB
Scout: — | 84 CB

 

Jaylin Bannerman
Defensive End
20090120040123!Free_Blue_Star20090120040123!Free_Blue_Star20090120040123!Free_Blue_Star
6-6, 215 lbs.
Pickerington, OH (Pickerington Central)

Top247: 922 | 52 WDE
247 Sports Composite: 866 | 52 WDE
Rivals: —
ESPN: — | 73 DE
Scout: — | 54 DE

 

Gunnar Hoak
Pro-Style Quarterback
20090120040123!Free_Blue_Star20090120040123!Free_Blue_Star20090120040123!Free_Blue_Star
6-4, 190 lbs.
Dublin, OH (Dublin Coffman)

Top247: 1070 | 51 PS-QB
247 Sports Composite: 868 | 38 PS-QB
Rivals: —
ESPN: — | 15 PS-QB (****)
Scout: — | 35 QB

 

Ben Snell
Running Back
20090120040123!Free_Blue_Star20090120040123!Free_Blue_Star20090120040123!Free_Blue_Star
5-11, 200 lbs.
Westerville, OH (Westerville Central)

Top247: 640 | 45 RB
247 Sports Composite: 874 | 60 RB
Rivals: —
ESPN: —
Scout: — | 49 RB

 

Roland Walder
Linebacker
20090120040123!Free_Blue_Star20090120040123!Free_Blue_Star20090120040123!Free_Blue_Star
6-3, 230 lbs.
Dayton, OH (Trotwood-Madison)

Top247: 760 | 27 ILB
247 Sports Composite: 898 | 34 ILB
Rivals: — | 39 OLB
ESPN: —
Scout: —

 

Zy’Aire Hughes
Athlete
20090120040123!Free_Blue_Star20090120040123!Free_Blue_Star20090120040123!Free_Blue_Star
6-1, 180 lbs.
Paducah, KY (McCracken County)

Top247: 892 | 65 ATH
247 Sports Composite: 902 | 64 ATH
Rivals: —
ESPN: — | 56 ATH
Scout: — | 45 ATH

 

Kordell Looney
Defensive Tackle
20090120040123!Free_Blue_Star20090120040123!Free_Blue_Star20090120040123!Free_Blue_Star
6-4, 285 lbs.
Springfield, OH (Springfield)

Top247: 1062 | 66 DT
247 Sports Composite: 925 | 62 DT
Rivals: — | 46 DT
ESPN: — | 50 DT
Scout: — | 32 DT

 

Davonte Robinson
Cornerback
20090120040123!Free_Blue_Star20090120040123!Free_Blue_Star20090120040123!Free_Blue_Star
6-1, 165 lbs.
Lexington, KY (Henry Clay)

Top247: 899 | 85 CB
247 Sports Composite: 1097 | 106 CB
Rivals: —
ESPN: —
Scout: — | 36 CB

 

Asim (A.J.) Rose
Athlete
20090120040123!Free_Blue_Star20090120040123!Free_Blue_Star20090120040123!Free_Blue_Star
6-2, 185 lbs.
Cleveland, OH (Garfield Heights)

Top247: 773 | 56 ATH
247 Sports Composite: 1074 | 76 ATH
Rivals: — | 26 RB
ESPN: — | 48 ATH
Scout: —

 

Luke Fortner
Offensive Line
20090120040123!Free_Blue_Star20090120040123!Free_Blue_Star20090120040123!Free_Blue_Star
6-5, 278 lbs.
Sylvania, OH (Sylvania Northview)

Top247: 776 | 67 OT
247 Sports Composite: 1370 | 112 OT
Rivals: — | 5 C
ESPN: —
Scout: —

 

Justin Rigg
Tight End
20090120040123!Free_Blue_Star20090120040123!Free_Blue_Star20090120040123!Free_Blue_Star
6-6, 240 lbs.
Springboro, OH (Springboro)

Top247: 923 | 41 TE
247 Sports Composite: 1403 | 58 TE
Rivals: —
ESPN: —
Scout: —

 

Ja’Quize Cross
Defensive Tackle
20090120040123!Free_Blue_Star20090120040123!Free_Blue_Star20090120040123!Free_Blue_Star
6-3, 292 lbs.
New Market, AL (Buckhorn)

Top247: 1165 | 70 DT
247 Sports Composite: 1472 | 87 DT
Rivals: —
ESPN: —
Scout: — | 82 DT

 

Grant KcKinniss
Punter
20090120040123!Free_Blue_Star20090120040123!Free_Blue_Star20090120040123!Free_Blue_Star
6-1, 190 lbs.
Findlay, OH (Findlay)

Top247: 1821 | 4 P
247 Sports Composite: 2232 | 4 P
Rivals: —
ESPN: —
Scout: —

 

Kayaune Ross
Wide Receiver (JUCO)
20090120040123!Free_Blue_Star20090120040123!Free_Blue_Star20090120040123!Free_Blue_Star
6-4, 220 lbs.
Phoenix, AZ (Phoenix C.C.)

Top247: 40 | 11 WR (JC)
247 Sports Composite: 71 | 16 WR (JC)
Rivals: —
ESPN: —
Scout: —

Article written by Drew Franklin

I can recite every line from Forrest Gump, blindfolded. Follow me on Twitter: @DrewFranklinKSR

13 Comments for The Current State of UK’s 2016 Football Recruiting Class



  1. DylanG
    8:30 pm July 6, 2015 Permalink

    Jordan Griffin is a 4 star too.



  2. David8577
    8:36 pm July 6, 2015 Permalink

    That’s a damn nice group. Let’s keep it together and add a few more.



    • Probably Not
      11:05 pm July 6, 2015 Permalink

      Sadly, especially in football, this commit means nothing. I am sure most will stay, and hope all do, but the past has taught us not to get too high on any of these kids until all is official. If/when we do lose some of these guys to other schools we will also pick up a few from other schools. I will wait till next summer to worry about who we have for 2016, that is when we will actually know.



  3. Dusten
    8:40 pm July 6, 2015 Permalink

    Grant Kckinnis? As awesome of a name as that would be for a kicker / punter, it’s McKinnis. Haha



  4. liggins1fan
    9:54 pm July 6, 2015 Permalink

    Now lets add LB Erroll Thompson, DB Carlos Becker, OT Tate Leavitt, DE Joe Henderson, and DT Leyshawn Askew
    My short reasoning for each of these players:
    Erroll Thompson: With 5 graduating LBs we will need some immediate help depth wise and he can make a splash defensively. Also he is a 4 star.

    Carlos Becker: Our secondary has been mauled by taller WR and we only have a couple taller DBs one of which is graduating. Becker runs a 10.5 per 100 yards or by proportion thats an outstanding 4.2 per 40 yards. But at 6-3 it is hard not to try and get him.

    Tate Leavitt: With a glaring need at OT for 2016 Tate can dominate at either but projects as a RT due to his bulk. But also with being one of the top Juco in the country he is a must for progress.

    Joe Henderson: A defensive end with an aggressive nature but makes the game come to him. He would bring stability to the Jack position. Also he is rated the number 1 Juco DE.

    Leyshawn Askew: A big big DT at 6-6 and even if he is not rated he just oozes with raw ability and he would steamroll the QB almost twice a game!!!! And he plays in the biggest class in New Jersey.

    Why we will get this player:
    Erroll Thompson: Even if he states he has an offer from Alabama their LB priorities are toward guys like Wilson, Davis, and Moon. Also I tweet with him alot.

    Carlos Becker:I think we stand a good chance to get him because we were one of his first offers and
    he loves the opportunity to play in the SEC.

    Tate Leavitt: This one is the most likely to join our class with him constantly saying he enjoys the staffs Ohio ties and knows he would likely start in 2016.

    Joe Henderson:He is from Ohio and you know that means we have a good shot but he also has the revenge factor as he was committed to Tennessee and they cut him because they didnt think he would pan even though he clearly has.

    Leyshawn Askew: Although he is from New Jersey he loves the competitive nature of the UK program and said recently that the one offer he wants is from UK and he told me if he gets it he will probably commit soon after. The only obstacle between him and that offer is his test scores are not in yet from when he last took his standardized test. If he passes then the staff will probably offer soon after.



    • Scott
      11:23 am July 7, 2015 Permalink

      Great post !!
      I wouldn’t mind seeing another WR in this class. Slot receiver size, one that could redshirt.
      At LB, there is also Brock Miller (6-4 210 Vero Beach, FL). With the move to the 3-4 base defense, I like getting kids with some height that grow into an OLB



  5. Clay County Billy
    10:03 pm July 6, 2015 Permalink

    Well we ain’t gone compeet for no SEC champeenship with this groop.



    • DylanG
      10:28 pm July 6, 2015 Permalink

      UL fan, learn how to spell before you “troll”



    • CardFan502
      1:11 am July 7, 2015 Permalink

      Billy has a point – it’s not a basketball conference like the ACC.

      #ACCTakeoverBeginsSomeday #FirstRoundDraftPicksInAllSports #NothingToShow4it



  6. natedawg
    12:18 am July 7, 2015 Permalink

    Looking awesome!!



  7. APC
    2:59 am July 7, 2015 Permalink

    Dakota Holtzclaw is a WR. He was recruited by UK as a WR and wants to play WR.



  8. CalRipken
    7:51 am July 7, 2015 Permalink

    Stoops keeps plugging along with the recruiting!! Keep it up Stoops!!



  9. Windycitysteam
    11:40 pm July 8, 2015 Permalink

    Man, Stoops is building a hell of a program!