Since this article was posted, Kentucky has received three more predictions between Rivals and 247 Sports. That includes a pick from football recruiting guru Steve Wiltfong with a high level of confidence.
The Kentucky Wildcats football program has had an unprecedented level of success under head coach Mark Stoops, and it’s translated to a level of recruiting the program has rarely, if ever seen.
In 2020, Kentucky made waves with the commitment of 5-star defensive lineman Justin Rogers, who was at one time a top-10 recruit at Rivals.
In the 2022 class, the Wildcats currently have a pledge from a top-15 recruit in offensive tackle Kiyaunta Goodwin, but he may not even end up being their best pledge in this class.
Back in September, we learned that Kentucky was becoming a legitimate contender for 5-star wide receiver Barion Brown, who visited for the historic win over Florida.
Even so, the Alabama Crimson Tide have been widely viewed as the favorite for much of this recruitment, but that appears to be changing.
Today, Kentucky received a pair of Rivals FutureCast predictions to land Brown, one from Justin Rowland, and the other from Alabama football reporter Andrew Bone. While it’s nice to see the pick from Rowland — arguably the best there is when it comes to Kentucky football recruiting — seeing a prediction for Kentucky from an Alabama expert is very eye-opening.
The 6-foot-1, 173-pound Brown, hailing from Pearl-Cohn in Nashville (TN), has already taken visits to Alabama, Auburn, TCU, Ole Miss and Tennessee in addition to his Kentucky trip. He holds offers from those schools, as well as Georgia, Penn State, Texas A&M, LSU, Florida State and Michigan among others.
On3 has Brown ranked as the No. 14 overall player (two spots ahead of Goodwin) and No. 2 wide receiver in 2022 (their top 20 players are 5-star recruits). Rivals has the Nashville (TN) product ranked No. 53 overall and No. 7 among receivers.
As of now, Kentucky’s wide receiver group will lose Josh Ali and likely Wan’Dale Robinson next season, so there’s going to be a major opening for someone to come in and make an immediate impact at this position. Perhaps that’s making it more attractive for a guy like Brown, knowing he could come in and earn a featured role right away vs. possibly being low on the depth at Alabama for several years.
It goes without saying that Kentucky landing Brown would be one of the biggest recruiting wins of the Stoops era, one that could potentially help this program reach the next level and eventually win an SEC East title.
One of the biggest takeaways from Kentucky’s loss to No. 1 Georgia was, while there’s clearly talent throughout this roster, the receiver department still needs more impact players to take down a team as good as the Dawgs.
Brown has the potential to be just what the doctor ordered.