By LARRY VAUGHT
Could Vince Marrow leave Kentucky for Youngstown State?
The Kentucky football recruiting coordinator apparently has drawn interest from Youngstown State as a candidate for its vacant head coaching position.
Marrow is a Youngstown native and at age 51 has a passionate desire to be a head coach. He’s helped revitalize the Kentucky program under Mark Stoops and it should be no surprise that Youngstown would potentially target Marrow.
The UK coordinator was on a recruiting trip in Ohio Wednesday when WKBN-27 found him and asked about his interest in the job. Here’s what he told the TV station.
“Names are thrown out. I’m from here, grew up here. My interest — until I talk to somebody, my interest is just, I’m watching as a fan. But I’m a big fan of (Youngstown State president) Coach Tressel and (athletic director) Ron Strollo — played against him in high school. I’m pretty sure they’re going to get a good guy,” Marrow said.
“A lot of people from home have been calling me and saying ‘We want you to come back home.’ I’m just up here recruiting, just looking at kids and all of that. If my interest was there to be the head coach there — we have to see.
“I know whenever I take a head job, I’ll do a good job. Right now we’re building a good thing down at Kentucky, but in the short future — you just never know when’s the right time to do it. But I know I will be a head coach sometime.”
Odds are he would take a pay cut to leave UK and become head coach at Youngstown. Odds are he will also likely get a raise at UK just knowing that he’s drawing interest from Youngstown State — and he should.
The SEC announced Thursday that each school got about $50 million from the league for the 2018-19 school year. Surely UK could spare another $400,00 or more for Marrow to keep the football program’s momentum going. Out of $50 million, a $400,000 expenditure is next to nothing.
Marrow has been with Stoops at UK since day one and has dramatically elevated Kentucky’s recruiting to where landing four-star players — or even a five-star — is not unexpected. That has never happened before at UK.
Kentucky fans understand what Marrow has done for the program.
“I respect coach Marrow and he has to do what’s right for him. He’s done a lot for us! I hope Mitch (Barnhart) makes it a hard financial decision for him. I agree with something I read earlier. Going home isn’t always the best move especially if things don’t work out. Selfish me says STAY!” Wes Lewis posted on Twitter.
“Please stay at UK until we win the (SEC) East — we love ya and respect your wishes but we really want you to stay,” Lonnie Stewart tweeted.
If Marrow does leave, wish him well. He’s poured his heart and soul into UK football. Just pat him on the back and tell him thanks.
But no doubt Lewis is not the only UK fan feeling “selfish” and wanting Marrow to stay as Stewart indicated.
My gut — Marrow will be back at UK. However, if he would leave, just remember he has helped build a program that I think is now past crumbling over the loss of any player or coach but no doubt UK football will be a lot, lot, lot better if Marrow is back.