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Kentucky Basketball Recruiting: Updates Come Fast and Furious

Could Tony Parker team up with Kyle Wiltjer in next year's Wildcat front court?
Could Tony Parker team up with Kyle Wiltjer in next year's Wildcat front court?

Recruiting news never ceases to arise. On the heels of the latest recruiting update, which unveiled 2012 forwards Savon Goodman and Ricardo Gathers as potential targets, comes another new name. Meet Tony Parker, a highly regarded forward from Lithonia, Georgia. Parker, ranked 31st overall by ESPNU, is a true power forward at 6'9", 270 pounds. He's also hotly pursued, with a top 3 suitor list of Duke, UCLA, and Ohio State.

There's conflicting reports about whether Kentucky head coach John Calipari has officially extended an offer or not. A Cats Pause ($) report quotes Parker as receiving a scholarship offer, while a Scout ($) report says no. Whether it's the former or the latter, an interested Parker would certainly be take for the Wildcats, as Kentucky sorely needs size going into next season.

Despite having longstanding relationships with a handful of blue blood schools, it certainly seems like Parker is receptive to the newfound attention from Kentucky. In the Cats Pause report, Parker's dad Virgil was quoted as saying:

"Tony and I, we've had a lot of discussion with the (recruiting) process. He has always said that (recruits) say when they go to a certain school, it reaches out and grabs them and they know they want to be there. He said that hasn't really happened yet."

Parker's addition to Kentucky's recruiting big board isn't the only new recruiting news. Briefly, after the jump:

  • Five star 2012 PF Anthony Bennett trimmed his list to five: Florida, Kentucky, Oregon, UNLV and Washington. Bennett unofficially visited Kentucky in November but has yet to take any official visits. I strongly expect Calipari to make Bennett, along with Shabazz Muhammad, a top target this spring.
  • Speaking of Bennett and Muhammad, they may be affected by another piece of news. Khem Birch, formerly a Pittsburgh Panther, decided to transfer to UNLV. That's notable because both Bennett and Muhammad currently play high school ball in Las Vegas and have UNLV as a finalist. Muhammad is a Vegas native at Bishop Gorman with ties to UNLV Head Coach Dave Rice, while Bennett is a Canadian playing at Findlay Prep. Hey, did you know Birch is Canadian as well? The Rebels could be in for a big spring.
  • Per Jerry Meyer, Kentucky target Devonta Pollard plans to visit Texas on January 21, his first official visit. He's also been closely linked to his hometown school, Mississippi State. Meanwhile, per Clint Jackson, fellow forward target Amile Jefferson just received an offer from Duke.
  • In 2013 news, Troy Williams told Tar Heel Illustrated that UNC and Kentucky are co-leaders, and that he currently plans to commit in May. That's a little earlier than my Bold Prediction, but I'd take it.
  • Uber-prospect Julius Randle blogged about his recent visit to UNC, Duke and NC State. In his post, he mentioned that he'd like to take a visit to Kentucky.
  • Local product Darryl Hicks could come down to a Kentucky-Louisville battle.
  • One name to cross off the list: Aquille Carr has pledged to Seton Hall. He didn't have a Kentucky offer, but there was some interest.