Three-star defensive tackle Kobe Smith announced his commitment to the University of Kentucky on Wednesday night, becoming the latest promising prospect to join the Wildcats' recruiting class of 2016.
Smith — a 6-foot-3, 315-pounder from Lawrenceville, Ga. — chose the Cats over fellow finalists Miami and N.C. State. He was committed to the Wolfpack for more than six months before backing off of that pledge while on a recruiting visit to UK a couple of weeks ago.
Several other schools — including Arkansas, Louisville, Mississippi State, Nebraska, Tennessee and Virginia Tech — have extended scholarship offers during the course of Smith's recruitment.
UK's newest addition gives the program 21 commitments for the class of 2016 with national signing day still more than six months away. The Cats are expected to add only two or three more players to the current group, and UK's coaches have already turned some of their recruiting attention to 2017 — picking up four commitments from that class earlier this week.
Rivals.com ranks Smith as the No. 30 defensive tackle in the class of 2016, and he's considered a three-star prospect by all of the major recruiting services. Rivals has him as the No. 38 rising senior in the talent-rich state of Georgia.
In April, Smith was ranked as the No. 10 defensive performer at a Rivals camp in Charlotte that included many of the top recruits in the Southeast.
He is the third defensive tackle — along with Ja'Quize Cross and Kordell Looney — to join UK's recruiting class, which jumped Oregon for the No. 12 spot nationally in the Rivals team rankings.
Louisiana State, Alabama, Mississippi and Georgia are the only Southeastern Conference programs with higher-ranked recruiting classes than UK, which has the most commitments so far of any school in the league.