Fast-Rising Hybrid Defender Kalib Perry Talks Recruitment

Versatile 2022 defender Kalib Perry has narrowed his focus to a select group of schools, and a decision is on the way.
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Georgetown (Ky.) Great Crossing High School standout Kalib Perry was another prospect who had a busy month of June. Perry took three official visits, two unofficial visits and picked up offers during the camp setting. He is now closing in on a decision and discusses this with SI All-American.

The 6'4", 215-pound hybrid prospect started the month at Tennessee with a camp visit which resulted in an offer, followed that up with official visits to Purdue and Cincinnati, then camped at Kentucky to earn an offer before ending the month back in Knoxville on an official visit.

"It was good," Perry said of the busy month. "I just knew that I would be doing football workouts during the week then heading up there to the officials on Friday, so really, it was just trying to learn as much as I can about the school, the program, and things that are a major priority to me. Getting to talk with the players and see how they feel about the program was one of the major things I wanted to learn. Just asking a lot of my questions, letting my mom asked a lot of her questions was good. I had a good time, though. It was good to be able to hang out and get to know the players, coaches, and culture at each school."

After camping and earning an offer at Tennessee on the first day of the month, Perry made the trip to Purdue for his first official visit of the month.

"I was really impressed by the staff," Perry stated. "They are all really close. One thing I really loved about their school was their engineering building and the program they have set up around it. I loved how Coach (Jeff) Brohm handles things with student-athletes and allows them to do the degrees and classes they are required to do. He wants you to go take the challenging classes and courses and be successful because if the NFL or next level doesn't work out, you have to have a degree. That is one thing I was really impressed about with them."

Perry's next official visit went to Luke Fickell's Cincinnati program, and it was another trip he enjoyed.

"I loved how Coach Fickell kind of took their team and proved that they are worth more, and Cincinnati is going to be a team that is in the running for the next years coming up, so you better be looking out," Perry said about the Bearcats. "Of course, Cincinnati has always been good academically and everything like that. They actually started the Co-Op program. That is one thing that was pretty cool to know."

"I really like what Coach Fickell has done," Perry continued. "He has a great pedigree, really thinks highly of the players, tries to stay around the players, and he comes around and makes sure everyone is doing good. Some head coaches don't like to be around as much, but he likes to be involved with everything, and that is one thing I really liked about him."

After his official visit with the Bearcats, Perry returned to the home state and camped in front of Mark Stoops' staff, which resulted in an offer.

"I have been there for junior days and everything," Perry said. "Some people were questioning why they hadn't reached out and offered, but I never really took it to heart or anything like that. I was thankful to get the offer. When I went before, I was at safety, but I am at linebacker now, and I got to meet Coach (Jon) Sumrall. He is a really good coach, and he is really a down-to-earth person. He tried to teach me the lessons he could, and he knows I have potential and wants to work with me and become the player I can be because he believes the sky is the limit for me."

After camping and earning an offer at Tennessee at the first of the month, Perry returned to Knoxville for an official visit during the final weekend before the recruiting dead period.

"At the camp, it was just fun being able to compete," Perry said about camping with Tennessee. "I wasn't really familiar with camps, but it was really good to be able to go down there and compete with some of their top recruits. Being able to learn and adapt a lot, the coaches really liked my skillset as a hybrid safety/linebacker, so they worked a lot of foot drills with me. It was a lot of working down as a pass rusher on the edge, and they really like my versatility. It was good because I was able to kind of fly around the field and do a bunch of different things."

"I had a good time," Perry said about his official visit with the Vols. "I got to meet some of the coaches when they offered me, but I got to talk with the head coach, Coach (Josh) Heupel more. I know they are fixing the whole recruiting department with the recruiting violations and everything around that. He has been working hard and everything, and I am pretty sure they are about to get it fixed up here soon. I just liked everything I have heard about what he has done for the program and helping it get back on its feet. I have been to a couple of Tennessee games with friends before, so I know it is a pretty crazy culture down there. I got to meet a lot of players and spend time with coach BJ. He was breaking down my film and comparing it to players at a lot of the other places he has been at. I had a good time with that and being able to understand and learn a lot. He wants to take me in, and kind of like coach Sumrall, help me be the player he knows I can be. You can't just be satisfied with getting to college. Everyone is going to be a top player there because you have the facilities and school, so it is just what are you going to do with that stuff now."

With the busy month in the rearview, Perry is working towards making a college decision.

"Before all of this recruitment, I was planning to commit after senior season or mid-senior season," Perry said about his timeline. "But with COVID and everything, a lot of players in the transfer portal and players committing early, being a top guy for some of these schools, they want to get you in, so I took the month of June to reach out to colleges and answer my questions, and I am actually planning to make a decision here in the next week."

With a public decision quickly approaching, what will it come down to for the Blue Grass star?

"I loved the academics at every school," he said. "But one main concern was just position-wise, playing time and what is going to suit me on the field. Really just finding which school will put me in the best position and allow me to be the best I can be to show my skill set."