Kentucky Basketball Recruiting: 2014's Cliff Alexander Gets UK Offer From Coach Cal

Cliff Alexander was a fan of John Wall while he was at Kentucky.

Via John Clay:

"I talked to (Calipari) the day before the offer and he said he wanted to coach me," Alexander said. "The next day I got a text from Coach Orlando (Antigua) that I have a scholarship offer. It is something I’ve been waiting for a long time."

The Michigan St. Spartans were leading for the 2014 big man (you can find out more about him at NextCats), but this offer from John Calipari changes that calculus significantly. From ESPN.com:

"I think Kentucky is one of his dream schools," said Reggie, who handled his younger brother Derrick’s recruitment. "I’m pretty sure he’s excited. At the same time, when I talk to Cliff, I tell him when Derrick was in high school his dream school was North Carolina, and he went to Memphis. It’s about what is your best fit."

From Rivals.com (paywall):

"I like them a lot," he said. "They're like my dream school."

So "dream schools" don't really matter? When you're talking about the best recruiter in the modern era of college basketball, and maybe the best in the history of the college game, I think it matters. Calipari's peerless persuasive skills is backed up by the panache of the University of Kentucky with it's unmatched facilities and tradition, as well as the reigning NCAA Tournament champion.

I think when the "dream school" is Kentucky coach by Calipari, it matters ... a lot. Alexander is also a big fan of John Wall from his younger days, so there's no doubt he's familiar with how Kentucky plays under Calipari.

Another thing that many people will consider a factor is that Alexander plays AAU ball for the D Rose All-Stars, coached by none other than Reggie Rose, brother of Derrick and infamous Memphis free-rider during the scandal that broke out there over Derrick Rose's alleged college entrance exams.

But what is Calipari to do, put Rose's team off limits to him because he helped get Memphis in trouble? I doubt that will happen, but it will be remarked upon, and probably rightly so. These are just the kind of things that go along with being associated with a scandal like Memphis, and part of the overall package. For me, it's water under the bridge, but others will doubtless see something nefarious going on. I also find it interesting that Rose is actually the one downplaying the significance of Alexander's "dream school" comment.

Anyway, Kentucky has to now be considered the new leader for Alexander's services, and based on my reading of the situation, the odds of him winding up in the Blue and White are pretty high.

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