Thursday, October 12, 2017

Vince Marrow helped Kentucky Wildcats land Kevin Knox

Knox’s surprise commitment was helped by fellow players, Vince Marrow, and, of course, John Calipari.

By Graham Duncan

October 11, 2017

No one was expecting Kevin Knox to commit to the University of Kentucky.

All the top recruiting gurus had picked Duke or North Carolina has foregone conclusions to land the 6’9”, 5-star forward; Kentucky was nowhere in the mix.

But, after being recruited by other 5-star, future Wildcats and Kentucky football recruiting coordinator Vince Marrow, Knox provided Calipari with one of the coups of the 2017 recruiting cycle
and became the final piece of a loaded Kentucky squad.

Kyle Tucker’s story on SEC Country tells the full story of Knox’s unusual recruitment. It all started at the McDonald’s All-American game. UK commits Quade Green, Jarred Vanderbilt, P.J. Washington, and Nick Richards gave Knox the full pitch, including the famous BBN cookies.

Knox’s refusal to eat the baked goods was a snub that most Wildcats fans felt was a sign that he definitely would not be coming to UK. But the gesture, as well as the intensity with which those guys recruited him, showed Knox just what kind of guys he would be playing with as a Wildcat.

Said Knox, “...just seeing them recruiting me even after they got all those people, it was great to see. I loved the way they recruited me.”

The most incredible part of this story, to me, is the selflessness with which these star players recruited Knox. Jarred Vanderbilt, the player who stood the most to lose by Knox’s presence in Lexington, was one of the most vocal recruiters of Knox during the week of the All-American game.

The second piece of Knox’s recruitment finds its home on the gridiron with UK’s football recruiter extraordinaire Vince Marrow. Marrow was playing for the Buffalo Bills in 1994, when that organization drafted Kevin Knox, Sr., a wide receiver from Florida State.

As Knox’s recruitment heated up, Marrow and Knox, Sr. were able to reconnect. Knox enjoyed his time with Marrow and got the full spiel from the recruiter. Knox played football in high school, but once he hit his growth spurt, football was no longer the best option.

Marrow, being the ace recruiter he is for Mark Stoops, was called on to assist John Calipari this time to help get Knox.

But even after the cookies and the family connect with Marrow, it was Calipari who sealed the deal for Knox and his family. Knox, Sr. spoke about his recruitment with Bobby Bowden and how he felt about Coach Cal.

In the end, Knox kept his decision to come to UK a secret from everyone but his parents. His decision to play for Cal and the Wildcats proved to be the last piece to complete this team. It's a young team, it's a talented team, and Kevin Knox fits right in to the mix. I can’t wait to see him suit up this fall and watch what he can do.

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