Wes Kemp Talks Mizzou

At first, any high school football prospect comparing himself to Terrell Owens would draw furrowed brows. In the case of St. Louis standout and MU prospect Wes Kemp, it's his style of play -- not his off-the-field antics -- that create visions of the Pro Bowl wide out.


Kemp stands 6-foot-4 and 225 pounds; Owens is 6-foot-3 and 224 pounds. Both receivers run a 40-yard dash in the 4.5 range, and both love to get physical.

Ranked as one of the top Missouri players in the class of 2008, Kemp holds a bundle of offers, including Missouri, Nebraska, Wisconsin, Illinois, Michigan State and Ole Miss, who he ranks as his current top six favorite schools.

He has trips planned to Ole Miss, Missouri and Nebraska this summer, and plans to elevate his game to the next level.

"In high school, being a big receiver I don't see much [man-to-man coverage]. I usually see zone and maybe a safety," he said. "I don't get a lot of in-your-face action. In college, there's a lot of man [defense], so I'm just getting ready for the next level."

With his physical résumé and recent red-hot recruitment, some would say Kemp is not far off from competing at the collegiate level. Paired with his 3.2 GPA and qualifying ACT score, Kemp is sure to make an impact early in his college career.

One attractive advantage of playing for the Tigers is that he has siblings at Mizzou. Growing up, Kemp said he was "a Mizzou and Michigan fan."

"Mizzou is real hard on me. I keep in contact with Coach [Cornell] Ford a lot, we talked just the other week," Kemp said. "They are trying to get me down [to Columbia] for a practice so I can see the players and get a better feel," he said.

A huge recruiting plus for Mizzou in Kemp's eyes is their consistent passing game.

"They stay five-wide all day, and they are always passing the ball," he explained.

"They are one of the top passing schools in the country. I love that Chase Daniel spreads the ball to every receiver. I know I would get a lot of balls in that offense," he said.

"Mizzou is definitely going to be one of the schools in my top five," Kemp added.

Through the Mizzou praise, Kemp noted that Nebraska's recent commitment from star Mo. quarterback Blaine Gabbert has piqued the wide receiver's interest. Both Big 12 programs recruited Kemp early in the process, and the rising senior pays a bit of attention to which schools are picking up which players.

"I work out with Blaine [Gabbert] on Sundays. When I talk to him, the conversation picks up a lot about Nebraska. They have four top-100 linemen, which is a pretty big deal. Now that Blaine's there, there will be a quarterback for me all four years."

Kemp acknowledged that playing alongside Gabbert would be an advantage but not the end-all-be-all factor.

"It's just a little security -- one of the bigger reasons why I'm taking an unofficial visit this summer, and an official visit when September rolls around."

Traveling with Mizzou prospect and high school teammate Robert Steeples, the duo performed at a recent Scout.com combine in Chicago. The two talk about recruitment, and the two are so friendly that Kemp has gone as far to get Steeples name out to a few college coaches.

"[Steeples is] kind of under the radar, but he had a great Chicago combine," Kemp said. "He did well, so I know his recruitment has been picking up."
The two plan to travel to Illinois and Ole Miss together for visits this summer.

Though he has no set timeframe for making his decision, he is targeting the end of the summer to come to a final verdict. De Smet High's stud wide receiver predicts a state championship in his final season.

"I'm looking to be a leader and put us back on the top," he said.

It is clear that, like the summer climate in the Midwest, Kemp's recruitment is sure to heat up.

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