Florida linebacker commits to UK

January 13, 2004|LARRY VAUGHT

Kentucky added another verbal commitment to its 2004 recruiting class when Florida linebacker Johnny Williams said Monday that he would sign with the Wildcats next month.

Williams made an official visit to UK last weekend and said he liked everything about the experience, including the UK-Vanderbilt basketball game he attended in Rupp Arena.

"I had never seen a college basketball game. It was a wild experience and really showed me that Kentucky has great fans," Williams said. "I was already pretty sure Kentucky was where I wanted to be and my visit just confirmed that."

The 235-pound Williams runs the 40-yard dash in 4.55 seconds and had offers from Georgia Tech, Clemson, Bowling Green, South Florida and Duke.


"I think I could have an opportunity to play early," Williams said. "The coaches told me they need some immediate help at linebacker and that did appeal to me. I really don't care whether I play outside or inside linebacker, even though I'll probably start out as an outside linebacker."

Highly-touted receiver Lonnell Dewalt of Warren Central also made his official visit last weekend. However, he's apparently still not close to making a decision about his college choice.

He's been told by UK basketball coach Tubby Smith that he could also join his team once football ends, a thought that has appealed to Dewalt since Smith made the offer last summer.

"Everything went great on the visit. It's just that I am not ready to make a final decision yet," Dewalt said. "I am still pretty open about my choices. I will take some other visits and then see what happens."

He will visit Louisville in two weeks and go to Auburn on Jan. 30.

Kentucky is also still searching for a quarterback. Trinity's Brian Brohm visited hometown Louisville last weekend, but now says he may also visit Illinois before making a decision. Nebraska also called Brohm Sunday and hopes to persuade him to visit there.

Brohm already has made visits to Kentucky, Notre Dame and Tennessee as well as Louisville.

Memphis quarterback Antonio Heffner has dropped Louisville from his list of possible college choices. He's already visited Memphis and may take a trip to South Carolina. However, he definitely will be at Kentucky Jan. 23 because he says Kentucky and Memphis offer him the best chances for playing time.

Gibson transfers

Kentucky did lose one player Monday when reserve running back Monquantae Gibson of Louisville was granted his release. Gibson redshirted in 2002 and saw only limited playing time last season.

He plans to transfer to Division I-AA Youngstown State where he will have three years of eligibility remaining.

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