Height/Weight: 6-2, 225 lbs.
Hometown: Longwood, FL
The loss of senior Avery Williamson to graduation leaves a gaping hole at the middle linebacker position, and there continues to be uncertainty about who will man the other two outside linebacker positions as well.
Nico Firios is probably a better fit inside but he does have the size and skill-set necessary to play on the outside as well. There probably is not a position on the Kentucky roster more wide open than the linebacker spots, so he comes in at a great time.
It remains to be seen how he will fit into the defense, but his versatility and intelligence will allow him to move in and contribute more quickly than many are expecting.
The staff has made it clear that they need tough and athletic players on their defense and Firios certainly fits the bill.
This is a very tough run defender with the size and athleticism for the inside linebacker position at the major level of competition and his frame appears capable of adding bulk over time. We like his sideline-to-sideline range and overall playing speed.
A very good high, wrap tackler who doesn’t allow cheap yards after contact
Firios is a tough customer who plays with the intensity we look for when evaluating linebackers for the major college level. He may need some time to grow physically while acquiring coverage skills. However, if a redshirt year isn’t necessary, early situational playing time is a possibility.