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Louisville recruiting roundup: Russ Yeast and Malik Horton

Ian Johnson/Icon Sportswire

Through four weeks, Louisville has ridden its high-powered offense to a first-place position in the ACC with an undefeated record, and quarterback Lamar Jackson is in no small part responsible for this accomplishment. Jackson, who is drawing consideration for the Heisman Trophy, has accounted for 25 touchdowns between the air and the ground, so the Cardinals have simply outscored each opponent so far.

On the recruiting trail, Louisville is trying to attack just as aggressively. So far Louisville offers the No. 33 class in the country according to 247Sports.com, a class filled with talented prospects. One such target drawing the attention of the Cardinals coaching staff, a top recruit for the 2017 cycle, is Greenwood (Ind.) Center Grove athlete Russ Yeast.

Just like on the field, Louisville competes with its rivals for certain coveted prospects, such as Yeast, who at one time was committed to the University of Kentucky. Yeast, a four-star recruit, de-pledged from the Wildcats’ program in June and has carefully surveyed several schools — such as Louisville — since he became an uncommitted prospect.

Yeast took an unofficial visit to Louisville for the school’s 63-20 thumping over Florida State, the nation’s No. 2 team at the time. Not only did Yeast take in an impressive performance from the Louisville squad as the school hosted a double-digit number of committed recruits, helping to foster a family-type atmosphere on campus.

In recent days, speculation linking Yeast to an upcoming commitment to Louisville have increased, but the dynamic wide receiver-cornerback is currently still on the market, which means considering his offers from schools such as Auburn and Iowa. Yeast has officially visited both programs already this season, but it is recruits from Louisville that keep in close contact with the Indiana recruit through channels such as Twitter and text messages. These recruits are undoubtedly putting in extra work to help land Yeast come National Signing Day, though a pledge may come far sooner than February.

In addition to Yeast, Louisville is also taking a close look at three-star linebacker Malik Horton from Langston Hughes High School in (Fairbanks) Georgia, a state that is a fertile recruiting ground for the Cardinals with six pledges in the 2017 class.

Horton, who recorded 150 tackles, two interceptions and two touchdowns during his junior campaign, is listed at 6-foot-3 and 230-pounds. As an outside linebacker, Horton is tasked with covering tight ends downfield in addition to his run-stopping duties, both areas the Georgia recruit excels at. Such diversity in a skill set is intriguing to the Louisville staff.

Horton visited the Louisville campus this summer to work out for the staff, a camp he feels was executed to the best of his ability.

“I got to do some drills on and meet the whole staff,” Horton told Today’s U. “I also ate a barbecue afterwards.”

Horton says he had an opportunity to meet with the whole staff and shared the details of his conversations with the Louisville coaches.

“They really like my man to man coverage skills and how quick I can rush off the edge,” Horton said.

The staff, impressed with Horton’s skill set and physical makeup, offered the powerful linebacker after his camp performance, and while the Cardinals have been evaluating Horton, he also has kept an eye on Louisville’s performance this season.

“They have dominated every opponent and have been playing their best ball ever,” Horton said. “They look really good right now.”

Horton, who is currently planning on taking an official visit to Maryland and possibly Colorado, says it is “more than likely” that he will commit on one of his officials. When making that decision, though, Horton says it will be passed on his potential for early playing time and how nice the campus is. Other official visit destinations include “possibly” Florida State, Michigan and Florida.

September 17 2016 Louisville Cardinals DL DeAsian Richardson [left] Chris Williams, and DeAngelo Brown in the game between the Florida State Seminoles and the Louisville Cardinals at Papa John Cardinal Stadium in Louisville, Kentucky. Louisville defeated Florida State 60-23. (Photo by Jim Owens/Icon Sportswire)

September 17 2016
Louisville Cardinals DL DeAsian Richardson [left] Chris Williams, and DeAngelo Brown in the game between the Florida State Seminoles and the Louisville Cardinals at Papa John Cardinal Stadium in Louisville, Kentucky. Louisville defeated Florida State 60-23. (Photo by Jim Owens/Icon Sportswire)

“I like to hear that truth,” Horton said. “I do my one homework on schools, but I like for every school to state facts and not feed me what I want to hear. I like hearing that I can start early as a freshman at outside linebacker or strong safety.”

 As for when his other official visits will come, Horton indicated that some will be during the football season and some will be after, so that element is still a bit undecided, though Louisville should receive a serious look from the powerful linebacker going forward.
Louisville recruiting roundup: Russ Yeast and Malik Horton

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