To start off his National Signing Day press conference, Coach Stoops hung up Jason Hatcher’s banner to match the rest of the banners surrounding the room.
Hatcher, a 6-foot-3, 250-pound defensive end from Trinity High School in Louisville, Ky., originally verbally committed to the University of Southern California, but today, chose UK. Stoops thinks Hatcher is dynamic and brings credibility to the team which will help them move forward.
Stoops believes it is important to recruit out of the state of Kentucky. Hatcher is one of three commits from Kentucky and one of nine defensive players that committed today to the new Kentucky Football era.
But Hatcher is not alone. Here is the complete list of the players who committed to the University of Kentucky on National Signing Day:
Jeff Badet (WR from Florida)
Javess Blue (WR from Florida)
Justin Day (OT from South Carolina)
Nick Haynes (OL from Florida)
Jojo Kemp (RB from Florida)
Steven Borden (TE from Texas)
Kyle Meadows (OL from Ohio)
Ramsey Meyers (OL from Florida)
Alex Montgomery (WR from Florida)
Reese Phillips (QB from Tennessee)
Khalid Thomas (RB from Florida)
Jason Hatcher (DE from Kentucky)
Alvonte Bell (DE from Florida)
Jacob Hyde (DL from Kentucky)
Blake McClain (DB from Florida)
Marcus McWilson (S from Ohio)
Regie Meant (DL from Florida)
Za’Darius Smith (DE from Alabama)
Nate Willis (DB from Florida)
Jaleel Hytchye (CB from Texas)
Austin MacGinnis (K from Alabama)
Ryan Timmons, who is from Kentucky, also committed to the University of Kentucky today but does not have a set position.
Stoops said it was a group effort to get all of these commits in such a short time frame (two months) but is pleased with his coaching staff and their work ethic. Stoops even discussed how he’s already looking forward to recruiting for the class of 2014. After being asked about UK’s rankings, Stoops said that it shows “we’re serious” to the future classes.