During the past year, Kobie Walker has seen his Good Counsel football teammates sign with and commit to high-profile Football Bowl Subdivision schools including Notre Dame, Virginia Tech and Clemson. The junior safety/linebacker followed in those lofty footsteps Monday night when he pledged to Kentucky, knowing full well that his route to the Southeastern Conference team is one rarely taken by players in the D.C. metro area.
“You don’t see a lot of players come from the DMV and go to Kentucky, so hopefully this will start a new trend,” Walker said in a Monday night phone interview. “Hopefully, we can get more people from this area out there and they can fall in love with the program like I did.”
Walker’s visit to Kentucky’s spring game in April helped seal the deal. The junior said “Big Blue Nation” (BBN) made Lexington feel like home, fans shaking his hand, calling his name and treating the highly touted recruit as if they knew his commitment would come just a few weeks later.
The 6-foot-4, 215-pounder is the seventh Wildcat commit from the 2014 class, adding another dose of future talent for first-year coach Mark Stoops.
Walker said the coaching staff, which he described as “jacked” after getting his commitment by phone Monday, plans to use him at the outside linebacker position, exploiting his quickness and versatility ability in coverage.
“I’m a lot more athletic than most linebackers and I also played strong safety last year, so I know how to defend in man coverage with slot receivers,” Walker said. “While most big, slow linebackers can’t guard the slot, I can do that. I can also come up and blitz and make the big play.”
After garnering offers from the likes of Arizona, Boston College, Miami, Rutgers, N.C. State, Rutgers, Syracuse and Wisconsin, Walker narrowed his list to Kentucky, Miami and West Virginia before choosing the Wildcats on Monday.
“The fact that I can go there and play early, and play in the SEC with my size and athleticism are the big reasons why I chose Kentucky,” said Walker, who plans to major in engineering. “I had pretty much made up my mind after the spring game, but I wanted to take some time to think on it. Even after that, they were just consistent and showed a lot of love, sending me bundles of letters in the mail. [Monday], it just felt like the right time and place to commit.”
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