Kentucky has picked up a commitment from a sleeper prospect in the Peach State.
LaGrange (Ga.) safety/outside linebacker Wesley Woodyard recently gave his verbal to the Wildcats, according to his high school coach.
“They just got a great player,” said LaGrange coach Steve Pardue. “He’s a kid who’s 6-2, 195 pounds and runs a 4.5. He could probably wind up playing either outside linebacker or safety depending on how his body keeps maturing. He’s a tough, physical kid who likes to hit.”
Woodyard flew under the radar this season, partly by design.
“I didn’t do a lot to push his junior film because he was one of those kids who had improved so much, just physically, from the end of his junior season to the beginning of his senior season,” Pardue said. “A lot of times, someone’s first impression is the one that sticks, and I didn’t want people judging him by his junior film. He was a late bloomer.
“We’ve had a lot of people looking at him this year. Kentucky was the first to get on him and offer a scholarship. Then Auburn started showing some interest. Arkansas, Georgia and Florida also asked for some film on him.”
Woodyard made an official visit to Kentucky in September to see the Wildcats play Florida. He also visited Auburn.
“He came and told me last week, ‘Coach, I want to go to Kentucky,’” Pardue said. “I asked him if he was sure, because I felt pretty strong that he was going to get some more attention and I’m the kind of coach that when you commit, you commit. He said he was sure.
“Auburn called back today and asked if they could still talk to him, and I told them he was committed to Kentucky. I think they were about to offer.”
Through nine games this season, Woodyard has helped lead LaGrange to an 8-1 record and the region championship. He has recorded 70 tackles, four tackles for loss and three fumble recovers (two returned for touchdowns).
As a junior, he recorded 81 tackles, 12 tackles for loss, two forced fumbles and one interception.
He was a teammate of 2003 UK signee Emmanuel Harrell, a wide receiver who took the juco route to Foothill Community College in California.