UK Recruiting

Beau Allen chooses his college Monday. Why might he pick hometown Kentucky?

Lexington Catholic’s game-winning field goal vs. Southwestern

Lexington Catholic defeated Southwestern 23-22 after Connor Fry hit a game-winning field goal as time expired.
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Lexington Catholic defeated Southwestern 23-22 after Connor Fry hit a game-winning field goal as time expired.

Lexington Catholic quarterback Beau Allen will announce his college choice Monday afternoon, and all signs point to him staying close to home.

The University of Kentucky is widely expected to be Allen’s pick. Six 247Sports recruiting analysts had logged “Crystal Ball predictions” in favor of the Wildcats as of Sunday afternoon. His commitment date also comes on the heels of two other announcements — those of offensive tackle John Young (Christian Academy of Louisville) and cornerback Andru Phillips (Mauldin, S.C.), with whom Allen is friends — that went UK’s way; he’s a legacy recruit, too. Beau’s father, Bill, spent five years with the UK football program in the late 1980s.

PrepSpin, a Lexington media company that specializes in high school sports broadcasts, will stream Allen’s announcement live from Lexington Catholic at 3:30 p.m. Allen’s other offers include Duke, Georgia, Michigan, Washington State and West Virginia.

A three-star prospect according to 247Sports, Allen is the top quarterback recruit in Kentucky and ranked 21st nationally among pro-style quarterbacks. As a junior last season he led the state in touchdown passes (42), was first in yards per game (311 in 12 contests), second in total yardage (3,729) and eighth in completion percentage (65.3).

Young, a four-star recruit, made his announcement on April 28 and immediately turned his attention to recruiting Allen and others to join him.

“I’m not gonna be out of his ear, to be honest. I’m gonna be on him until he commits,” Young told the Herald-Leader that day. “He’s my main target right now and then, hopefully, we’re gonna move on and tackle this thing together.”

UK will enter the 2019 season with uncertainly surrounding the quarterback position behind returning starter Terry Wilson. Walker Wood, who has battled injuries and never taken a snap for the Wildcats, was No. 3 on the depth chart behind Gunnar Hoak, who graduated last week and announced he’ll transfer to Ohio State. Freshmen Amani Gilmore and Nik Scalzo (who’s coming off an ACL tear) will enroll without a spring camp under their belts.

Wilson has two years of eligibility left while Wood has three. The program has not been linked to any graduate-transfer quarterbacks who’ve entered the NCAA Transfer Portal.

If he picks and ultimately signs with Kentucky, Allen would be the first in-state quarterback to join the team since Wood, who entered the program as part of the 2017 signing class. Allen is a higher-ranked recruiting prospect than Wood was, but he’s not as well-regarded as Drew Barker, who was a four-star recruit and considered the fifth-best at the position in 2014 (ahead of last year’s NFL MVP, Patrick Mahomes, who was then ranked 22nd by 247Sports).

Landing Allen would also be another feather in Kentucky’s cap as it pertains to in-state recruiting. UK, after failing to sign a Kentucky player in its 2018 class, had five homegrown players choose the Wildcats in 2019. Allen and Young would give them two for the 2020 class with several uncommitted players with offers — Landen Bartleson (Notre Dame), Izayah Cummings (Male), Octavious Oxendine (North Hardin) and Vito Tisdale (Bowling Green) — still in the mix.