The importance of recruiting was a major theme during Mondays announcement of the renovations to Commonwealth Stadium, and Kentucky Coach Mark Stoops took the opportunity to brag about a few of his future players.
Five UK recruits have signed financial aid papers with Kentucky, signalling their intent to enroll at the school in January in order to take classes next semester and participate in spring practice. The signed papers mean that Stoops is now allowed to publicly comment on those recruits.
The five players who have signed include in-state quarterback Drew Barker, wide receivers Thaddeus Snodgrass and T.V. Williams, running back Mikel Horton and linebacker Dorian Hendrix.
On Hendrix: He was my first commit in this 2014 class. Dorian Hendrix is a linebacker and a very good football player. In a news release from UK, Stoops said Hendrix has been solid all the way through. Im very excited about the leadership he brings at middle linebacker.
On Horton: Unbelievable player. Big, physical running back. Hes the whole package. Hes got agility, hes got strength, hes got the size that we need to compete in this league.
On Snodgrass: Hes a big, strong wide receiver. Great player, great in the classroom. So were excited about Thaddeus.
On Williams: From McKinney High School in Dallas. And its good to branch out into the Dallas area and sign a player from there. T.V. is a very electric guy. Hes an inside receiver. Very excited about T.V.
On Barker: And last but not least, a guy thats very important to us and to this program because hes one of the best players in the state and we all know how important it is to lock down your own state and to start the recruiting within your state. This guy has been rock solid. Hes a tremendous leader. Hes a heck of a player. Hes a national recruit. Hes an Elite 11 quarterback. And hes tough as nails. But the thing I love about him most is his leadership.
Stoops concluded his remarks by acknowledging that the five signees are only the beginning in what is shaping up to be the highest-ranked class in UK history.
Were excited. As Ive said before, when were going to build this program, it starts with guys like that, he said. Theres a whole slew of guys that are going to join these five thatll be here either in January or this September. And, believe me, were very happy to be here. Very optimistic about the future.
UKs class is ranked No. 8 in the country by Rivals.com.
Read more about UK football and basketball recruiting at Next Cats.