Football Recruiting: Rides Remaining

A brief commentary on the happenings around Kentucky football recruiting.

That seems to be a big question on the minds of many Kentucky football fans is: "how many rides do we have left?"

That's a good question.

There are only 13 scholarship seniors on the roster.

Jess Beets, Tony Dixon, Ahmad Grigsby, David Jones, Braxton Kelley, Dicky Lyons Jr., Tim Masthay, Marcus McClinton, Shomari Moore, Nii Adjei Oninku, Myron Pryor, Garry Williams and Johnny Williams

Kentucky also lost Curtis Pulley and Paul Warford from the roster. The Cats could also wind up losing Trevard Lindley and Jeremy Jarmon to the NFL after this season. After browsing the roster quickly, I found that Kentucky has a full compliment of 85 scholarship players on the roster. There are probably players here and there than can become walk-ons and other guys who'll be lost due to attritition (grades, conduct, lack of PT).

I count 19 players who have committed to Kentucky. At best, I'm going to assume we give 21 scholarships out this year. I'd expect that a couple of players don't make it to Kentucky out of the group, as is the case seemingly every year (see Donte Rumph of '07).

Considering the last two classes have been offensively heavy, I'm expecting UK to go defense with it's last couple scholarships. With the possibility of Lindley going to the pros, and Paul Warford's status up in the air for next season, that leaves Kentucky with Randall Burden, Anthony Mosley and Cartier Rice at cornerback. The defense loses Grigsby, Jones, Moore and walk-on Robbie McAtee to graduation. It's desperation time at corner.

At defensive end, there's still a lot of young talent on the roster, but nobody knows what will come of it. With guys like Chandler Burden, Collins Ukwu, Taylor Wyndham, Greg Meisner and Antwane Glenn still early in their careers, UK could already have their next "Jeremy Jarmon". But there are no guarantees. Kentucky is still looking at additional players who can come in and play early at defensive end. Ridge Wilson, Tristian Johnson and Justin Jones could all be defensive ends for Kentucky, but that remains to be seen. One would think that Kentucky needs to continue to recruit true defensive end prospects.

One thing that I have learned over the last six years is that you trust Rich Brooks' judgement. He's an experienced guy who knows what he's doing. So I expect that he has a plan for the defensive end position in future years after Jarmon is gone, and I believe he has a plan in place for corner after the mass exodus of defensive backs after this season.

A few other things of note.

  • Qua Huzzie will be taking additional visits. Huzzie's one of Kentucky's top commitments for the 2009 class. And while there's no indication that Kentucky won't land Qua because of these visits, it still makes the average fan feel uneasy.
  • Spencer Shuey came to Kentucky over the weekend to visit Kentucky unofficially and according to his coach, he intended to commit to Kentucky. Unfortunately for Spencer the rides are becoming scarce and Shuey may wind up being left off the bus.
  • Justin Green, a top-notch cornerback from Louisville will be visiting Kentucky officially at some point. Green is a commitment to Ohio State, but there have been rumblings that his commitment may not be completely solid. Green would be just what the doctor ordered at corner for the Wildcats.

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