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Virginia lands the McKenzie Twins over Oregon, BYU and Arizona

By Jerry Ratcliffe

uva footballBronco Mendenhall had twins on Wednesday, not in the traditional paternal sense, but in a major recruiting coup, landing two of the state of Utah’s top prospects.

Twin brothers Dominique and Marcus McKenzie of St. George, Utah, announced they had committed to Mendenhall’s Virginia program, choosing the Cavaliers over Oregon, BYU and Arizona. The McKenzies are BYU legacies in that their dad, Brian, was a running back for legendary LaVell Edwards’ program, and their mom, Salote, ran track for the Cougars.

Dominique, a 6-0, 160 receiver, and Marcus, a 6-0, 165 cornerback, are ranked No. 10 and 11 among prospects in the state of Utah for the Class of 2022 by 247 Composite rankings. Both intend to participate in a two-year church mission, which would count them in UVA’s 2024 recruiting class.

“Coach Mendenhall knows how to get the missionaries back into football after the two years of being away, so we know we won’t be forgotten and there’s a solid plan in place to reincorporate,” Dominique told Blair Angulo of 247Sports.

The brothers visited Virginia back in June and immediately realized it would be difficult to pass up an offer from the Cavaliers. One of the main factors they were looking for was the football program’s culture and UVA had everything they were looking for.

“The official visit and the standard for the culture there, I know it sounds generic, but really talking to the players, I was able to key in on the things that are important,” Dominique told Angulo. “If you don’t fit the standard there you definitely don’t fit into the culture, so you end up with an effective team and the right type of attitude. I could see how hard working the team was and it was clear that they’re all working toward the one goal.”

The brothers were impressed that Mendenhall put them through a test in getting them to mount horses at the coach’s home to see how they took instruction, how they reacted to unexpected challenges.

“After the fact, we found out it was like a test to see how we’d fit,” Dominique said.

While they considered going to different schools, but preferred to stay together if possible.

Marcus recently broke the Utah state record in the 60m and 200m sprints, while Dominique is also one of the fastest prospects in the state of Utah.

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