Kentucky Football: Recruit Mike Edwards Not Enrolling

Frederick Breedon

2014 defensive back Mike Edwards tweets he won't be enrolling in classes at UK.

2014 Kentucky defensive back Mike Edwards tweeted out yesterday he will not be "able to enroll this semester" due to pending shoulder surgery. Edwards followed that tweet up by saying he's still a Wildcat. The details are scarce and so speculation is filling in the gaps. It was initially unclear what Edwards meant by "this semester", but a look at Kentucky's Registrar's site shows that the eight week summer session is halfway complete, so by "semester" this likely means Edwards will not enroll this fall.

Essentially, Edwards will not attend UK this fall and so he will not participate in practices or the S&C program. UK signed five defensive backs last signing class, and may not have intended to prioritize that position in the 2015 class. This may change things. There's speculation that Edwards will "grayshirt" and enroll in January counting against the 85 man roster limit instead of the 2015 signing class limit, but "grayshirting" does not prevent a player from enrolling in a college just when he starts to be on scholarship.

The extent of his shoulder injury is unknown, but it's not uncommon for serious shoulder injuries to sideline athletes for months. A shoulder injury on an incoming freshman would easily set him back for the entire season, but it's curious Edwards elected not to enroll over just using a redshirt season. It's fair at this point to raise the idea that academics could be a factor in all of this, but dwelling on it or speculating further feels unfair to the teenager. However, where Edwards ultimately ends up is more in the air than previously. UK could recruit over him, or he could reopen his recruitment. Time is the major factor here, and if his situation is not resolved by January 2015 the odds he ever enrolls at UK will get slimmer as both parties explore more expedient options.

Contrary to Matt Jones' opinion, I don't think Edward's loss will have a great impact on UK this season. The coaches had yet to decide -publicly at least - if Edward's would play cornerback or safety. In any case, UK returned their two- deep at every secondary position, most of whom are two year letterman that improved more than any other unit last season compared to 2013. Meanwhile, UK signed four other defensive backs in 2014 - including JUCO transfer AJ Stamps who enrolled early and started (and looked great) in the spring game. I doubt the former Rivals four star was going to make contributions outside of special teams this fall. If Edwards does grayshirt and enroll in January 2015 he will still have four years of eligibility while also retaining his redshirt option.

Edwards is loaded with potential and wherever he lands ASoB wishes him nothing but success. He probably always thought he'd be heading off to college this fall along with his friends, and it would be natural if the delay took a mental toll on him. Hopefully he keeps his head up and continues to work. Adversity can be the best thing for us sometimes.

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