There was a deep chuckle from within Vince Marrow on Tuesday night when he was asked how unbeaten Kentucky’s success this season has translated to recruiting success for future seasons.
“It was kind of hard recruiting here early, when we first got here,” said UK’s recruiting coordinator and tight ends coach, who has been on Mark Stoops’ staff since he arrived six years ago. “Now I know how Ohio State and all those other guys feel. When you’re on the other side of the thing, now being a top-20 team.”
Some recruits who might have been lukewarm on Kentucky at the start of the process are working to book official visits.
Some players are “trying to hurry up and take their official visits because they’re afraid we’re going to be filling up now with our recruiting board,” Marrow said. “It’s good to be on this side. But it’s well deserved. We’ve worked hard for it.”
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Several of UK’s top prospects for 2019 and beyond will be on campus this weekend when newly ranked Kentucky faces South Carolina at Kroger Field in front of what could potentially be a sellout crowd.
A full, loud stadium will go a long way toward swaying recruits, Marrow said. It was successful already last weekend versus Mississippi State. Louisiana quarterback Amani Gilmore and junior-college cornerback Brandin Echols were both at the win over the Bulldogs and committed within 24 hours.
“Every recruit there — and we had some big recruits there, some on official visits — and they were blown away,” Marrow continued. “Their parents were saying, ‘Wow.’
“Some people are recruiting against us saying we’re a basketball school, but when they left they were saying this is definitely a football school. Then getting that win just put us way up for a lot of people on our board.”