Kentucky Wildcats Football: Missing Out on Northern Kentucky?

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I hope everyone enjoyed their holiday weekend this week. I did. I was able to see my family and friends and relax. And talk football, that always happens when a few of us get together. My uncle is the head coach of a high school here in Northern Kentucky and he was lamenting UK’s lack of recruiting in the area. He feels that the staff is missing out on some solid home-grown talent. Obviously, there is a little bias involved here but the idea isn’t foreign.  It’s actually a common complaint I’ve heard from Wildcat fans for some time, so I decided to look at the numbers.

In the last four years, the state of Kentucky has produced 87 Division I football players. That number alone speaks to UK’s need to recruit out-of-state players.  The Commonwealth simply does not produce enough talent to field a winning football team. Technically it hasn’t produced enough players to fill a 25-man class for the last 4 years.

Of the 87 players noted, 14 came from the area loosely defined as Northern Kentucky. Kentucky signed 3 in that span, though it is noteworthy that Patrick Towles, Miles Simpson and Josh Harris were highly sought-after.  The Cats also unsuccessfully recruited Tate Nichols (Notre Dame), Austin Collinsworth (Notre Dame),  and Zeke Pike (Auburn).  Most of the other kids from the region signed with MAC schools.

There are currently 2 players from Northern Kentucky listing interest in UK according to Scout.com, Covington Catholic QB Blake Bir and Ft. Thomas Highlands WR Jac Collinsworth. Bir is a possibility to sign with the Cats late in the process. He is viewed as a project who would have plenty of time to learn behind Towles. Collinsworth is a longshot, he likely dreams of a Notre Dame offer. His father, Chris, doesn’t seem to care much for Kentucky after following Austin’s recruitment.

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