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Two 5* Recruits Officially Cut the Kentucky Wildcats from List of Finalists

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Shooting guard Rashad Vaughn and power forward Cliff Alexander are no longer considering the Kentucky Wildcats.

Rashad Vaughn cut Kentucky from his list.
Rashad Vaughn cut Kentucky from his list.
USA TODAY Sports

This time last year, Cliff Alexander and Rashad Vaughn both had the Kentucky Wildcats high on their list of favorites. Yet as of this week, neither player is still considering Kentucky.

The first blow came when Cliff Alexander, a big man from Chicago (IL) Curie, tweeted his top 6 schools. In the tweet, he declined to list the Wildcats amongst his finalists. Rashad Vaughn, a shooting guard playing his senior season at Findlay (NV) Prep, followed suit and trimmed his list to 7 ($), leaving off Kentucky.

Though it sounds like bad news, both moves did not come as a shock to the recruiting community. Instead, it was expected.

Kentucky's interest in Alexander had waned all summer, despite a big grassroots season from the talented big man. While Kentucky has stayed in contact with fellow Chicago native Jahlil Okafor, the Wildcats hadn't communicated with Alexander in quite a while. Furthermore, Kentucky head coach John Calipari just extended an offer to another big man, Myles Turner, a strong indication that the Wildcats had moved away from Alexander.

Meanwhile, Kentucky extended two offers to shooting guards in recent months. The first went out to Devin Booker last spring, followed by another offer to James Blackmon last month. Both Booker and Blackmon attended the UK Alumni Charity Game on official visits. Currently, both players are considered Kentucky leans, leaving Vaughn as the odd man out at the 2.

Don't cry for either player; their offer lists are still strong. Recruitniks believe Alexander has the Kansas Jayhawks, Michigan St. Spartans, and Illinois Fighting Illini at the top of his list of six schools. Vaughn's recruitment remains a bit more mysterious, but look out for the Iowa St. Cyclones along with the North Carolina Tar Heels and Minnesota Golden Gophers.

As for Kentucky, Calipari still has some big fish in play at both the big man and shooting guard slots. As the Swedish House Mafia would say, don't you worry, child. Calipari's got a plan for you.