Recruiting cranks up for Coach Cal and Kentucky

Although Coach Calipari and the Wildcats are currently sitting without a signed recruit for the 2017-2018 NCAA Basketball season, good news shall be on the way shortly Cats fans.

The fall recruiting period for college basketball coaches has officially begun, granting Coach Calipari the autonomy to travel across the country to meet with preeminent targets in the hopes of bringing another championship to the heart of the Bluegrass region, Lexington.

On Friday morning, Calipari traveled to Pennsylvania for a visit with highly esteemed prospect Mohamed Bamba. This 7- foot power forward is regarded for his strong athleticism, length, and playmaking ability. This New York native’s strong play on the court is thought to resemble a few former Wildcat favorites, Anthony Davis and Karl-Anthony Towns. Currently, Kentucky, Duke, Harvard, and Michigan are some schools that are interested in his services.

Following his trip to Pennsylvania, Coach Cal immediately traveled to Tampa Bay, Florida to meet with Kevin Knox. This 6-foot 8, five- star small forward averaged 29.6 points and 10.6 rebounds per game playing for Tampa Catholic last season. Knox earned the accolade of National Junior Player of the Year from following his impressive season. Knox has announced his latest list of schools, including the University of Kentucky, Duke, University of North Carolina, Florida State University, and the University of Kansas.

Assistant coach Tony Barbee traveled to Connecticut to meet with Hamidou Diallo on Friday.  This five-star shooting guard is highlighted for being the number seven overall prospect by 247Composite. This Queens native impresses on both offense and defense, putting up strong statistics in the categories of points, assists, rebounds, and steals. UK and UConn are thought to be favorites to land the guard from Putnam Science Academy.

Assistant coach Joel Justus visited two skilled prospects recently. First, Coach Justus met with Khavon Moore in Georgia for an early morning workout. The 6-foot 8 small forward is highly regarded for his prized skills on the basketball court. The Macon, Georgia native is currently ranked number ten overall in the 2018 recruiting class. Although he is only a junior, Kentucky has shown early interest in the five-star forward. Moore is scheduled to be in Lexington in early October for an unofficial visit. Several teams have already sent offers out to Moore, including Florida State University, University of Georgia, University of Florida, and Texas A&M to name a few.

Later in the day, Coach Justus went north to Maryland for a visit with Immanuel Quickley. This 5-star point guard is noted for his strong play at The John Carroll School, and on the USA Under-17 team. Quickley is currently a top point guard in the 2018 class, and has drawn interest from several major college basketball programs. In addition to UK, Duke, Maryland, Cincinnati, Louisville, and Miami are among the schools interested in his services.

Although Coach Calipari and company only visited with a few recruits so far, several additional targets are on their radar. Quade Green, John Petty, Nick Richards, Gary Trent Jr., Jarred Vanderbilt, and Lonnie Walker are additional prospects that are being highly sought after. Trae Young, Tremont Waters, and P.J Washington have emerged as top candidates for several highly revered college basketball programs, including Kentucky’s.

At this early stage in the process, athletes do not necessarily need to have their final decisions made. However, UK has hit the ground running in securing not only a well-built recruiting class, but a top college basketball program that will make Kentuckians and Non-Kentuckians proud and honored to be UK Basketball fans.

(Image courtesy of USA Today)


Brandon Blumstein

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