There's no shortage of confidence in Kentucky's newest football commitment.
"There's a lot of excitement around the Kentucky program right now, and I wanted to be part of that," said four-star Youngstown (Ohio) Cardinal Mooney defensive back Marcus McWilson, who announced his commitment to the Wildcats on Monday afternoon. "You can tell they're about to do something special, to build something up from the ground up and shock the nation. I know I can be an impact player there and help them do that.
"I just love coach Stoops and his whole attitude. He's a very confident guy. He says 'Let's go get it.' That's what I intend to do."
The 6-foot-1, 195-pound safety had originally committed to Nebraska, but had a change of heart after his recruiting coach with the Cornhuskers, Vince Marrow, joined Mark Stoops' new staff at Kentucky. He made his official visit to Lexington this past weekend, and returned home with an opportunity that he thought was too good to pass up.
"I've always believed in that saying 'If you want to be the best, you've got to beat the best,'" McWilson said. "This gives me an opportunity to test myself against some of the best teams and players in the country. It doesn't get any better than the SEC. I can't wait to get out there and play against Alabama."
McWilson said he had a strong feeling that he would end up being a Wildcat during his official visit.
"It was around Saturday night when I realized I wanted to go there," he said. "After the (UK-LSU) basketball game, I had a great time hanging out with the players and the other recruits. I was welcomed with open arms by everyone there. It just felt like home. I could see myself going to school there, playing football, running out on that field and helping Kentucky win a championship. I said, 'This is where I want to be.'
"I just needed to come back home, sit down with my mom and dad and my coach -- talk about all the pros and cons -- and everybody thought that Kentucky was the best fit for me."
Asked if his decision surprised anyone in his hometown, McWilson said, "Probably a few. But they are excited for me. Everyone at Mooney is real supportive of me and say they can't wait to see me do big things at Kentucky."
McWilson is rated the No. 16 safety prospect in the nation by FOX Sports and Scout. The UK staff has told him he could get a look at both corner and safety in the Wildcats' new defensive scheme.
"They really like my versatility," he said. "I'm good against the run or the pass."
Kentucky picked up two high-profile commitments on the first day of the week. In addition to McWilson, the Wildcats also secured a verbal from three-star Florida wide receiver Alex Montgomery.
Since arriving at UK, Stoops has secured verbal commitments from nine players rated three stars or higher by FOX Sports and Scout.
McWilson excited about Kentucky's future
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