Tuesday, January 26, 2010

With Signing Day next week........

As we inch closer to signing day, anticipation is mounting among UK fans. UK currently has 20 commits to sign next week and still working on a few. Based on reports, there are a couple of commits that are rumored to have eligibility issues and a few that could ink with the Cats on signing day. Here is another snap shot of the 2010 class:

UK Still Recruiting:

DJ Howard (RB)- I continue to hear Clemson is on him hard, and already has offer from Auburn. I would be surprised if UK lands Howard.

Rajaan Bennett (RB)- Just took a visit to Vanderbilt, already visited UK and going to visit Tennessee. Call it a hunch, but I think Bennett commits to UT and UK comes in second. The Cats have been on him longer, but his recruitment with UK seems to have been too hot/cold.

Miles Simpson (RB)- I believe if Simpson wanted to be a Cat he would have already committed. It appears Simpson is down to Illinois, Indiana and UK. Based on reports, he could be headed to Champagne. In my opinion, UK never made him a priority.

Mike Thornton (DL)- Just visited UK with four teammates, three are already committed to UK. In my opinion, Thornton is Georgia's to lose. He could take a visit to USC this weekend, but things can change fast. His friends and teammates will have to pull him to Lexington. If Thornton signs with UK, he would be the top recruit in the class.

Tim Patterson (DE)- Is down to UK and Louisville and will announce on signing day. I believe Patterson will be Card simply because it's his hometown and he is likely caught up in the hype. Also, his good friend Stefan Robinson has already committed to the Cards and their high school coach said they would likely play together.

Chris Sharpe (CB)- Visited UK with Michael Thornton and Co. The staff told Sharpe they would know about a possible offer in the next 3-4 days. Sharpe has a couple of offers and is UK's if they want him.

Jerrell Priester (ATH)- Down to UK and Vanderbilt and has visited both schools on official visits. The Vandy staff is coming for an in home this week. Priester told me that he is 50/50 right now. Priester's family never visited Lexington, but did visit Nashville which could come into play. However, Priester will have to improve his ACT if he wants to qualify at Vandy.

Tim Wynn (OL)- Wynn's recruitment just came about in the last few days. The coaching staff including Joker went to visit him in Atlanta. Wynn was an All-State selection and has several D1 offers. UK will have to make a big impression in a short amount of time to seal the deal. Trying to get an interview.

Jamius Gunsby (ATH)- Is another LaGrange recruit that would continue to the pipeline. Gunsby has stated that UK is like family because he knows so many players there. Florida has been in the mix as well, but it's unclear if he has an offer. I've heard rumors that grades could be an issue as well. I think UK has a great shot to sign Gunsby based on the pipeline factor. I've been trying to get an interview for over a month.

Possible Surprises:

Alex Smith (TE)- Committed to UNC after decommiting from Cincinnati. I think the appeal of playing for Joker Phillips and being close to home could sway him to Lexington. There are reports from credible sources stating Smith visited UK this past weekend.

Derrick Bryant (DE)- Committed to UCLA over UK. Bryant and his father have spoken highly of UK and the staff. UK was still going to recruit Bryant until the end. I'm hoping for a change of heart and hope distance from Ohio become a factor for him.

Skyler Shofner (OL)- Committed to Michigan State over UK. Shofner has become friends with Sam Simpson and could take another late visit to UK. The Spartan staff visited him again recently to secure his commitment. If he gets back on campus, then the Cats have a legit shot, if he doesn't, he will be a Spartan.

Isaiah Lewis (FS)- Committed to Michigan State over UK. Most everyone that Lewis was UK's to lose and many speculated that he committed to another Big 10 school trying to get an offer from Ohio State. UK said they were still going to recruit Lewis. There have been no reports of him visiting UK recently, but he and his family visited early.

Storm Johnson (RB)- Just because everyone likes to dream big. Johnson visited UK, but never seemed like he wanted to leave the south. Johnson seemed like he was FSU's to lose, but in the end committed to Miami-FL. There were rumors that Johnson was tied to an assistant coach that could end up at UK and he would follow. I think the chances of him inking with UK are slim and none, unless there is something up Joker's sleeve.

Could have issues qualifying:

Tim McAdoo (DT)- I've heard from several people that McAdoo won't qualify and will have to go to prep school or enroll at a Juco school. McAdoo has never been excited about being a Cat and always considered a "soft" commit. The kid is a beast and I hope he makes it on campus.

Anterio Sloan (CB)- Another recruit I've heard could have issues qualifying. The staff visited him just before he committed, therefore I have to trust the coaches have reviewed his transcript and wouldn't waste their time if he wouldn't qualify. I'm just reporting the rumors.

Mychal Bailey (S)- Bailey was a Juco All-American and another LaGrange product that has wanted to be at UK. Many expected Baily to enroll in January with Gibbs and Henderson, but he has work to do in the classroom to get qualified. Bailey is a great athlete and would contribute at UK.

My top five commits:

Raymond Sanders (RB)- Very underrated, shifty and explosive. Sanders will return kickoffs and punts at UK. The staff plans to line him up all over the place. He doesn't have the frame to be an every down type of back in the SEC, however I love his low center of gravity and he will lower his shoulder. His nickname is "Flash" Sanders.

Ryan Smith (ATH)- Smith is an overall great athlete and received a ton of accolades. He has played QB, RB and could play a variety of positions. I've watched his film and he would make a great Safety. Most project him as a Safety, but I wouldn't be surprised to see him on the offensive side of the ball either.

Dale Trimble (CB)- Trimble is one of the best players in this class. Trimble has the height to be a good corner and has excellent covering skills. Trimble could compete for playing time as a true freshman. If so, look for him to play on special teams as well. The key will be getting him to ink on signing day. Trimble will be a father soon and that could force him to stay closer to home with either Ole Miss or Auburn.

Avery Williamson (MLB)- Williamson is a great athlete and the staff is expecting big things from him. I continue to hear Tennessee is making a late push. I should have an interview with Avery this week. He will play Middle Linebacker at UK, but in my opinion could play fullback as well. Williamson is another UK commit that has received a ton of prep accolades.

Joseph Mansour (K)- Mansour will come in and make a difference at UK. The kid has a leg and drops bombs from 50+ yards now. (search his video on the blog). Having a kicker with a big leg will win UK games. Not to mention he will consistently put the ball into the end zone on kick offs. Field position is huge. Mansour was also named to the Georgia All-Decade team.

Just a reminder that we will have "Operation Win" Live Blog tomorrow with Larry Vaught at 2pm. Check in and have your questions for Larry and I and we will provide as much insight as possible to the program and recruiting.


  1. Firstly I am really looking forward to the blog tomorrow. Secondly I am also looking forward to the surprises we pull out on signing day. Sometimes good and sometimes pretty unremarkable. Surprises nonetheless!!!


  2. Mickey,

    Thanks for following the blog. We're just trying to bring more attention to the football program. I'm excited about the live blog tomorrow too!

  3. Mickey

    There are many surprises coming!

    As the song says "You ain't seen nothin yet!"