In this KentuckyScout Q&A, recent UK verbal commitment Jared Tucker, a defensive back from Stone Mountain (Ga.) Stephenson High School, talks about some of the factors that went into his decision to be a Wildcat.
KENTUCKY SCOUT: You gave your commitment to the UK staff this week. When did you have an idea that you had found your school?
JARED TUCKER: I took a visit up there on the 29th (of May) but before the visit I already had a great feel for the coaches. I really enjoyed their energy and the way they were recruiting me hard. I took the trip to see what more could they bring to the table, and I was just blown away. I got to meet with every last coach there, and they were all great. They showed me so much love, I just knew that was the right place for me. When I talked with my father afterward, he agreed with me. He said he was just as impressed as I was from the trip. He really loved the educational side of Kentucky. After talking to him, I had no doubt in my mind that was the place I wanted to be for the next four years of my life.
KENTUCKY SCOUT: Was that your first time on campus?
JARED TUCKER: Actually, I had been up there before with the old staff when I was in the 10th grade. But this was the first time since they got the new coaching staff, and really the first time I've got to go see everything on campus and meet all the people up there. I liked the campus a lot. I like what they're planning for the future, too. They're putting a lot of money into their football program.
KENTUCKY SCOUT: You had almost two dozen offers when you committed. Was there any other schools that made it a tough decision?
JARED TUCKER: I was going to visit Miami on June 3rd, but after my trip to Kentucky, that settled it. I know that's the place I want to be. I'm not looking around at other schools anymore.
EDITOR'S NOTE: Tucker also had offers from programs like Louisville, Florida, Ole Miss, Ohio State, South Carolina, Tennessee, Missouri and Vanderbilt.
KENTUCKY SCOUT: What were some other factors that led you to Kentucky?
JARED TUCKER: I think Coach (Mark) Stoops is going to turn things around fast. Their program is really on the rise since he got there. Just look at his 2014 class right now - it's amazing.
KENTUCKY SCOUT: Did any of those other UK recruits reach out to you during the process?
JARED TUCKER: Yeah. Quite a few. Drew Barker, the quarterback, was one of the first. He hit me up and was really recruiting me strong to join them. Also Darryl Long and Thaddeus (Snodgrass). It talked to those guys a lot.
KENTUCKY SCOUT: What have the UK coaches told you about why they think you're a good fit for the program?
JARED TUCKER: They said they love my speed and length, but the main thing is my speed. I'm a track guy, so I can run with just about anyone. I don't get beat too often. They also said they really need some DBs right now, that they're going to be throwing me right into the fire, and there's a good chance I can play some nickel my first year and be their No. 1 corner not long after that. I really liked hearing that. I want to be out there early, making an impact.
KENTUCKY SCOUT: Now that school's out, what will you be doing with your summer?
JARED TUCKER: I'm already getting ready for next season. Me and my teammates are at the Cam Newton skills camp right now. And we have some 7-on-7 camps coming up soon. We'll be going to Georgia and Alabama's 7-on-7 camps and a few others. Other than that, I'm just trying to keep working hard and getting better.
Q&A with UK commit Jared Tucker
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