Kentucky has landed one of the nation's top-rated junior college defensive ends and addressed perhaps its greatest position priority in Mark Stoops' first recruiting class.
Za'Darius Smith, a 6-foot-6, 255-pound end from East Mississippi Community College, announced during a press conference at Greenville (Ala.) High School on Wednesday that he will play for the Wildcats. Today marks the first day of the December signing period for junior college prospects.
"I know this staff," Smith told the Montgomery (Ala.) Advertiser. "I just feel comfortable here. Coach Stoops is a defensive man. (Jimmy Brumbaugh) coached me for a year and he got me where I need to be, as in all the SEC and ACC offers. I can continue that and just go on to bigger and better places with him."
Smith will follow his defensive line coach at EMCC, Brumbaugh, to Lexington. New UK head coach Mark Stoops announced earlier this week that Brumbaugh would coach the Wildcats' D-Line.
Some sites that track junior college prospects consider Smith to be the nation's top strong-side defensive end prospect coming off a sophomore year which saw him record 66 tackles and 11 sacks. He was also being heavily recruited by major programs like Auburn, Texas A&M, Florida State, Miami, Missouri, Ole Miss, Mississippi State and Texas Tech.
The Wildcats also reportedly will sign Steven Borden, a 6-foot-3, 250-pound tight end from Kilgore (Texas) College. He is the son of former professional wrestling star Steve Borden, aka "Sting."
Cats land elite juco DE
Big Red Report Top Stories
Nebraska vs Illinois primerAfter a 4-0 start, Nebraska is now ranked No. 15 in the nation. But can they avenge a bad loss to Illinois from last year?
Big Red Report9:18 AM
Watts B1G's best commit in SeptemberScout looks at the biggest commitments by conference for the class of 2017 during the month of September...
Scout Football6:00 AM
Four-Star DB Locks In First Four VisitsFresno (Calif.) Central defensive back Jaylon Johnson has locked in his first four official visit dates and will head out to Lincoln this weekend for visit No. 1.
Scout FootballYesterday at 11:18 AM
5 Questions: Nebraska vs IllinoisNebraska on Scout talked with Illini Insider Jeremy Werner to discuss this weekend's matchup between Nebraska and Illinois.
Big Red ReportYesterday at 11:01 AM
No. 1 WR Joseph Lewis an Army All-AmericanThroughout its 17-year history, the U.S. Army All-American Bowl has featured some of the nation’s most elite football players before they became prominent stars in college.
Scout FootballYesterday at 7:40 AM