UK Recruiting

Cats land prize recruit for 2011 class

Kentucky has not quite completed its football recruiting class for 2010 but got a huge jump on 2011 when it received a commitment Friday from one of the state's top juniors.

Jon Davis, a 6-foot-3, 240-pound athlete from Eastern High School in Louisville told UK head coach for offense Joker Phillips that he plans on attending UK, said Davis' high school coach, Ken Whalen.

Davis figures to be the state's top-rated prospect when the recruiting rankings are released next summer. He has received offers from Stanford, Duke, Purdue, Louisville and Indiana.

Davis runs a 4.6-second 40-yard dash, according to Whalen, and is listed by several recruiting analysts as an athlete. He plays multiple positions at Eastern, but UK plans to try him as a tight end, Whalen said.

"He's got the size, he can run, has great hands and can block," Davis' high school coach said. "They really envision him playing a Jacob Tamme-type of role for their offense."

Tamme caught 133 passes for 1,417 yards and 11 touchdowns for Kentucky from 2004-07. He is in his second season with the NFL's Indianapolis Colts.

Whalen said Davis was impressed with Phillips and the Kentucky coaching staff and also received a glowing recommendation from another Eastern graduate who attended UK — New England Patriots defensive lineman Myron Pryor.

"He saw how well they took care of Myron, not only looking after him on the field, but also making sure he stayed on top of his academics," Whalen said. "Jon is a strong student, and his parents were very involved in the process. That made a big difference."

UK has 21 commitments for its 2010 class and might not take many more as it is expected to be a little short of the maximum allotment of 25 scholarships.

Brooks not ready to make announcement on future

There has been much speculation about whether the Music City Bowl will be Rich Brooks' last game on the Kentucky sideline, but Brooks said Friday that now wasn't the ideal time to discuss his future.

"When I'm ready to address that, I'll address it," he said.

Brooks said the week of the Tennessee game that he planned on meeting with UK Athletics Director Mitch Barnhart in mid-December before making a decision on whether to retire or not.

Brooks, 68, has led UK to an unprecedented four straight bowl games.

While Brooks didn't address specifics about what he was hoping to hear from the administration, the Kentucky coaching staff is the ninth-highest-paid staff in the Southeastern Conference, and there are also facility upgrades — such as the multipurpose recruiting room — still on the table.

Brooks was visibly upset when the retirement question was brought up the week of the Tennessee game and clearly wants to avoid any distractions heading into the Music City Bowl.

Cincinnati players voiced their anger over how their former coach, Brian Kelly, handled his impending departure to Notre Dame, and Brooks seems intent on avoiding that type of drama.

"You just try and tell the players before it's made public," he said. "There's always speculation about what may happen. I think it depends on when you make a decision, who you share it with before you (make a decision) and that you do what you need to do before the announcement is leaked out. I just think there's an appropriate time for everything and an appropriate way to do it. To me, the people who count the most are the ones you're in the trenches with."

Locke gauging draft status

Kentucky junior running back Derrick Locke has submitted paperwork to the NFL Draft Advisory Board to get an idea of his prospects for the 2010 draft, Brooks said Friday.

The 5-foot-9, 190-pound Locke overcame a devastating knee injury suffered midway through the 2008 season to rank second in the SEC in all-purpose yards at 150.9 per game this season.

Locke led UK in rushing with 843 yards, caught 25 passes for 254 yards and led the SEC and ranked eighth nationally in kickoff returns with a 29.6-yard average.

Brooks said Locke is the only UK underclassman who is testing his draft status. Last year UK underclassmen Trevard Lindley, Micah Johnson and Jeremy Jarmon had their draft status evaluated before ultimately staying in school. Jarmon was later ruled ineligible by the NCAA for testing positive for a banned substance.

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