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Conner QB Drew Barker kept open mind about new Kentucky staff and likes what he has seen

uk footballBy LARRY VAUGHT

He’s a four-star quarterback who has impressed recruiting analysts and will be one of the leading contenders for Kentucky Mr. Football honors next season. Yet Kentucky was not one of the 10 schools that had offered Conner’s Drew Barker a scholarship until offensive coordinator Neal Brown changed that after watching Barker throw during a recent morning workout.

“It’s not like he has just surfaced as a top quarterback. Louisville offered him last spring. He has 10 other others. It’s just that Kentucky finally offered and that got his name out more in the state,” Conner coach David Trosper said. “The old Kentucky staff did not offer him. They recruited him just a little bit, but did not offer even though Rivals.com ranked him very highly and he had offers from Cincinnati, Western Kentucky, Purdue, Illinois, North Carolina, Louisiana Tech and South Carolina.”

Trosper thinks Barker was a bit miffed UK’s previous staff did not show more interest in him, but that will not work against new coach Mark Stoops and Brown.

“He does know Neal Brown’s background and how he fits in with what he does,” Trosper said. “With the previous staff, he probably had a little different feeling that the home state school did not offer a scholarship. But now he definitely has an interest. He has what they like and we’ll see what happens. I think after signing date (Feb. 6)  you will see business pick up even more with Drew.

Barker said not being recruited by former UK coach Joker Phillips did leave a “bad taste in my mouth” based on the offers and interest he got from Louisville and Western Kentucky.

“When the new staff came in, I did not really think I liked Kentucky. Then they got in touch and I called them and we talked,” Barker said. “The first thing they told me was not to hold grudges and come with an open mind to visit. It’s a brand new staff and new people. They knew the situation with  me. They just wanted me to come down with an open mind. I came and left impressed and definitely interested in Kentucky.”

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  1. wes

    That is great a really good quarterback is what we need to to keep this process going in the right direction. He shouldn’t be to upset Joker and his staff didn’t recruite the highest calibor players. I guess he knew he didn’t have a chance.

  2. Ira

    I’m upset with the old staff, heck most of the fans are based on how he recruited. Joker and previous staff didn’t try when it came to recruits like Barker.

    I’m glad Barker is coming in with an open mind, hopefully Neal Brown can make up the time Joker wasted.

  3. David

    Great story. It is a shame the last coaching staff did not recruit Kentucky players as hard as they should have. I can only imagine how deep the hole would have been if Joker would have been allowed another year at the helm. Very Happy with Coach Stoops and his coaches and their efforts of recruiting top tier players. Go Cats!!!

    1. Love SEC F-Ball

      I agree with all of you. It is amazing to me that the previous staff did not even try.
      U.K. should have been one of the first that offered. Well it is a new day!

      Drew, you will see huge fan support and encouragement at Kentucky.
      Best of luck this next year and with your College selection process.
      We hope that you will select the Cats!

  4. Shinny

    Just a big DUH!! Anybody really surprised about “The Joker Staff” Forget about it–the new news is “The Air Raid” and “Stoops Troops” are in town!!!! Join in the fun Mr. Barker it’s “Football time in the Bluegrass” Sure nuf this time!!!!!!!!

    1. Larry Pup

      Amen Shinny..it’s about the new sheriff in town. Forget the past . Come on Drew, be a UK “wildcat.” It is SEC football.

  5. Love SEC F-Ball

    You are right – It is not surprising at all.
    You are also right – Forget about it – Stoops Troops is the new news.

  6. steve from Dayton

    The last staff had one of the best quarterback coaches in the country. They knew who fit their offense. Do I understand? No! Am I a coach? No.

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