Kentucky assistant coach Chad Scott made a trip to Saint Petersburg, Fla., on Saturday to meet with the family of Lakewood High School receiver Marquez Valdes.
"He came to the house yesterday to meet with my parents and get to know them better," Valdes said. "It went really well. They liked him a lot and what he had to say about their school and how they could help me develop as a player and a student."
Valdes (6-3, 200) is a potential diamond in the rough in the talent-laden Sunshine State. As a senior, he caught 37 passes for approximately 800 yards and 11 touchdowns helping Lakewood post a 10-2 record and advance to the second round of the state playoffs.
Toward the end of his senior year, the scholarship offers started to roll in when coaches saw his new highlight film. Programs like UK, N.C. State, Missouri, Houston, Cincinnati, Minnesota, Louisville, South Florida, Toledo and Marshall all started to take notice.
"Coach Scott said they have a big need for receivers in their new offense, and that they love how I'm a bigger receiver who can make plays," Valdes said. "I was excited about their offer because I know how much Texas Tech threw the ball. Any receiver would be excited about that. Plus, it's a big school in the SEC. I want to compete against the very best and play in great atmospheres. The SEC is the best place to do that."
Valdes solidified plans to make an official visit to UK on January 18. He has already visited Toledo and Houston. A trip to N.C. State is lined up on the 11th.
"The last one is still open," Valdes said of his fifth official visit. "Maybe Cincinnati, Minnesota or USF if I haven't made a decision by then."
Asked what he's looking for on his visits, Valdes said: "Mainly the campus life and how the players interact with new people. Do they accept new players and welcome them in like family? Do the coaches relate well with their players? Stuff like that."
Florida WR gets in-home visit from Cats
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