Mark Stoops said earlier today, “recruiting is going exceptionally well.” Since he can’t get into specifics, I thought it’d be appropriate to take a deep dive into the specifics.
After hosting about 15 players on campus last weekend for official visits, Stoops picked up a pair of commitments — Maryland offensive tackle Naasir Watkins and Florida defensive end Christopher Whittaker. The two additions give Stoops 16 commits in the 2017 class. It’s ranked no. 33 overall, no. 11 in the SEC. The class in its entirety:
Kentucky Football Class of 2017
|Javonte Richardson||WR||Maple Heights, Oh.||6-4||210||4-star|
|Tyrell Ajian||ATH/DB||Mansfield, Oh.||6-1||185||4-star|
|Lynn Bowden||ATH||Youngstown, Oh.||6-1||185||4-star|
|Joshua Paschal||SDE||Olney, Md.||6-4||255||4-star|
|Yusuf Corker||CB||Stockbridge, GA||6-0||185||4-star|
|Danny Clark||QB||Stow, Oh.||6-4||225||3-star|
|Alex King||DE||Mason, Oh.||6-4||235||3-star|
|Phil Hoskins||DT (JUCO)||Toledo, Oh.||6-5||275||3-star|
|Bryant Koback||RB||Holland, Oh.||5-11||191||3-star|
|Joshua Ali||WR||Hollywood, Fl.||6-0||180||3-star|
|Clevan Thomas||WR||Hollywood, Fl.||5-11||190||3-star|
|Michael Nesbitt||CB||Ft. Lauderdale, Fl.||6-0||185||3-star|
|Jamin Davis||OLB||Lincolnton, Ga.||6-3||205||3-star|
|Walker Wood||QB||Lexington, Ky.||6-1||187||3-star|
|Quinton Bohanna||DT||Cordova, Tn.||6-3||275||3-star|
|Nassir Watkins||OT||Olney, Md.||6-6||300||3-star|
|Christopher Whittaker||DE||Hollywood, Fl.||6-4||246||3-star|
|Cedrick Dort||CB||Palm Bech Gardens, Fl.||6-1||165||3-star|
|Austin Dotson||OT||Belfry, Ky.||6-6||305||3-star|
|Sebastien Dolcine||OL||Miramar, Fl.||6-4||285||3-star|
|Lonnie Johnson||S||Gary, In.||6-3||190||3-star|
|Jordan Wright||DE||Ft. Lauderdale, Fl.||6-5||225||3-star|
|Abule Abadi-Fitzgerald||DE||Lakeland, Fl.||6-7||250||3-star|
|Isaiah Epps||WR||Jenks, Ok.||6-3||185||3-star|
By the Numbers
Players lost next season by position:
- OL: 4
- RB: 3 (2 walk-on fullbacks)
- WR: 2
- DL: 2
- DB: 3
Commits by position:
- OL: 2
- QB: 2
- RB: 1
- WR: 3
- DL: 4
- LB: 1
- DB: 3
Commits by state:
- Ohio: 6
- Florida: 5
- Kentucky: 2
- Georgia: 1
- Tennessee: 1
- Maryland: 1
Far from finished, Stoops expects to land “more than 20” in the class, leaving room for 6-8 more commitments. Here are a few of the guys they’re pursuing to sign on the first Wednesday of February.
Lonnie Johnson — The JUCO defensive back officially visited last weekend. He’ll take an official visit this weekend to Georgia before announcing his decision on Tuesday.
Lynn Bowden — The Youngstown native would be the highest ranked recruit in the class, maybe the highest ranked recruit ever to commit to Kentucky. The Cats are in a great position for the 4-star athlete.
Joshua Paschal — Teammates with Watkins at Good Counsel High School, the four-star defensive end is “low key” about where he stands in the recruiting process, but what once seemed improbable continues to look better and better for Kentucky.
Bruce Judson — Lamar Thomas and Darin Hinshaw visited the 3-star athlete early in the recruiting week. The South Florida commit has an official visit scheduled for January 11.
Isaiah Epps — This receiver from Oklahoma just received an offer from UK earlier this week. Standing tall at 6’3, the Cats are his first major offer. He could be on commit watch when he visits this weekend.
Jordan Wright — The three-star defensive end has already taken his official visit to Kentucky. Before he announces his college decision on December 21, he could convince a teammate to come to Kentucky too. 3-star defensive end Jon Ford is a Miami commit visiting Kentucky this weekend.
Brian Cole — The former Michigan safety once appeared to be a lock for Kentucky. He opted to go the JUCO route, spending this year at
Last Chance U East Mississippi C.C. Kentucky is still an option for Cole. He will visit Lexington this weekend.
I got so caught up looking for new names I forgot two of the biggest names that have been around for months: Ohio wide receiver Danny Davis and Ohio offensive tackle Thayer Mumford. The Cats have put themselves in a great position. All they can do is continue to do what they’ve been doing, and wait.