By LARRY VAUGHT
Kentucky recruiting coordinator Vince Marrow has almost become a rock star in Kentucky. Everybody knows “Big Dog” whether it is high school coaches, top recruits or UK fans. He’s a tireless recruiter but also shows up at numerous UK sporting events where fans see and appreciate him.
“Coach Stoops said to me one time, ‘I am the head coach but you are a very popular guy in this town and this state.’ I never really pay attention to it,” Marrow said.
Marrow said Lexington is a lot like Youngstown, Ohio, the blue-collar town where Stoops and Marrow are both from.
“I have really adapted to this state and the people. Our goal when we came here was to change this culture. We are from Youngstown. We come in and think we are pretty good in football and how we compete. You come in here and this is no knock against nobody. Being at the bottom and getting your teeth kicked in, and I think I can speak for any coach, that bothered us,” Marrow said.
“We wanted to get this going but it was never just to get to the middle of the pack. Me being around Mark a lot, we wanted to get to the top of the mountain and how do we get there. It was hard. We were getting beat and we heard all the jokes about Kentucky football. Even now I look at and we have a legitimate shot to get eight or nine guys drafted and people are questioning Josh (Allen), Benny (Snell), C.J. Conrad.
“Check Alabama or Ohio State, that’s the norm (to get that many guys drafted). What we did here was build that. What Benny did in this conference, that’s amazing. I don’t care how you spin it. I had one NFL GM (general manager) tell me we are looking at what this kid did. He had watched Kentucky for years and how it went from 2014 to 2016. He said you can’t question Benny Snell.”