As a toddler sitting in the Commonwealth Stadium stands, Ross Cox used to idolize Kentucky players.
Now the 6-foot-4, 205-pound Anderson County star is going to be one, declining scholarship offers from several schools, to accept preferred walk-on status next season.
"I saw what was going on at UK with all of those recruits, and I just thought I wanted to be a part of something great," Cox told the Herald-Leader on Wednesday night, a day before he plans to make an official announcement at his school. "I figured if I was going to do it, I was going to do it big."
Cox played all over the field for the Bearcats and will come to UK as an "athlete," but would like to focus on playing wide receiver. Last season, he 53 catches for 991 yards and 10 touchdowns. He also ran 94 times for 665 yards and 10 touchdowns.
On special teams, he had 500-plus yards and three touchdowns on kick returns. Defensively, Cox had 13 interceptions over the past three seasons and racked up more than 4,000 all-purpose yards.
The senior, who was looking at Eastern Kentucky, Western Kentucky, Toledo and Kent State, said it was too hard to pass up UK once he saw the Cats get big in-state recruits like Matt Elam and Drew Barker.
"I just feel like I can see things changing up there," he said.
Cox joins a collection of in-state talent planning to walk on at UK, including St. Xavier running back/wide receiver Charles Walker, Lexington Catholic wide receiver David Bouvier, Tates Creek punter Jake Ryan, Glasgow offensive lineman Ian Gilson, Harlan County Athlete Carson Whitehead and Betsy Layne linebacker Blake Spencer.
Herald-Leader staff writer Ben Roberts contributed to this report.