Name: Nate Willis
Hometown: Yuma, Arizona
Weight: 190 lbs.
40 time: 4.4
JUCO cornerback Nate Willis will likely be an immediate-impact player this year, as he gives the Cats experience at a very thin position. He held offers from West Virginia, Mississippi State, Ole Miss, and Arkansas among others. He is also rated as the #3 JUCO cornerback in the country by 247Sports.
Willis can also play free safety, and his 4.4 40 time allows him to cover the field like an SEC defensive back.
Kentucky has been a favorite of mine since it was announced that coach (Mark) Stoops was hired up there. Being a Florida guy, I always liked watching Florida State play and the kind of defenses they had. I didn’t hear too much from them when they were at Florida State, though, so it kind of surprised me when I got the call that they wanted me to come to Kentucky. I was excited about it. A chance to play in the SEC is something I always dreamed about when I was younger. I was a big fan of the Florida Gators, but I liked watching all the teams in the SEC.
Here is his ESPN Scouting Report
Willis is a well-rounded, scheme versatile DB who could get recruited to play corner or safety at the college level and might end up being most valuable as a nickel package defender. He is a competitive athlete who is tall, lean, has good length and possesses wiry strength. He shows flashes of physicality. He is instinctive with quick reads and reactions. He runs well and while his speed is a bit straight line, he has good overall range and closing ability. He shows good burst breaking underneath and the ability to accelerate under the ball and recover deep. He takes good angles on the ball. He is a very good press and overall man corner — it might be his best asset. He does a very good job rerouting, taking away inside leverage and utilizing his play-side hand. He can cover on an island but also play good zone coverage. He comes up quickly on perimeter run and pass support, closing the cushion quickly and sets the edge. He shows he can blitz and disrupt. He tackles and gets over blocks well, but it’s an area that he can improve with added strength. He shows good range at safety and runs the alley well but will need added bulk and improved run support skills to make an impact there. He needs to become tighter in his pedal and crisper overall in transition, but Willis is versed enough in coverage to come in and compete for a starting job.