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Minnesota Football Recruiting: Kendarian Handy-Holly Commits to Gophers

The 4-star safety visits this weekend and gives his verbal!

NCAA Football: Holiday Bowl-Minnesota vs Washington State Kirby Lee-USA TODAY Sports

(*Editor's note...What the heck does "Commitment to Eight" mean? It is our new recurring title for recruit commitments referencing a commitment to work towards the Gopher's Eighth National Championship.)

The Gopher defense and the overall Gopher recruiting class got a major bump on Saturday when Kendarian Handy-Holly gave his verbal commitment to be a Golden Gopher.

Handy-Holly comes to us from Alabama where he was teammates with current Gopher Mark Williams in 2015. Scout has him a 4-star recruit and in their top 300 while the other recruiting services give Handy-Holly 3-stars.

An aggressive and athletic safety who has several other power-5 offers. He’s a huge get.


On his commitment to the Gophers from GopherIllustrated ($cout).

"Minnesota has a great academic track record and one of the highest APR rates in the nation," he said. "The University of Minnesota is academically driven, with many job opportunities and possibilities after college. From an athletic standpoint, Minnesota competes in the Big 10, where the game is played at a high level."

ESPN Scouts eval

He is a Safety who plays a bit like a Linebacker. Aggressive, attack-minded and tough. He looks to enjoy contact and can be a disruptive pass defender.


Height: 6' 2"
Weight: 200 lbs.
Fake 40 Time: 4.45

Big 4 Ratings:

Power 5 Offers - Florida, Georgia Tech, Illinois, Iowa St, Kentucky, Louisville, Ole Miss

c2Eight - Handy-Holly.csv

Site Stars Rating Pos. Rank
Site Stars Rating Pos. Rank
Scout 4 n/a 25
Rivals 3 5.5 n/a
247 3 87 46
ESPN 3 76 61


Senior year highlights:

TDG Analysis

In Two Words - if you have to remember just two things about this player...

  • Physical
  • Ball-skills

Absurd Comparisons

Damarius Travis is my best comparison. I nearly went with Keanon Cooper as a comparison but I like the ball-skills of Handy-Holly better and I think he’ll end up being more of a physical safety rather than an athletic linebacker, like Cooper was.

Scheme Fit

Handy-Holly is going to be a back-end of the defense kid who is more than willing to come up and fill on run-support.

Impact on Other Prospects?

We need defensive back help and landing Handy-Holly will not deter us from landing another defensive back. Getting Adam Beck to flip from Texas Tech, that would be nice.

Overall the Gophers gained this commitment but lost linebacker Bryson Jackson to Baylor this weekend. The Rivals rankings have the Gopher’s class at 30th in the country just ahead of Oregon and Mississippi State.