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Kentucky Wildcats now on top in 2017 basketball recruiting class rankings

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Just when people start to doubt John Calipari, he’s got UK back at the top of the recruiting world. It’s also shaping up to be another Duke vs Kentucky clash for the top spot in the final rankings.

NCAA Basketball: Canisius at Kentucky Mark Zerof-USA TODAY Sports

The Kentucky Wildcats didn’t have a single commitment when the early signing period began.

They now have four players signed in the 2017 class after Quade Green became No. 4 Saturday night, giving UK their point guard of the future. He joins five-star forward P.J. Washington, five-star center Nick Richards, and four-star combo guard Shai Alexander.

That four-man class was enough for UK to surge into the No. 1 spot in the latest recruiting class rankings across multiple services. Scout.com is among them thanks to UK having the No. 7 center (Richards), No. 1 power forward (Washington), No. 12 point guard, (Alexander) and No. 4 point guard (Green).

Kentucky also has the top class at 247 now following Green’s commitment. They did just enough to edge UCLA, Arizona, Washington, and Alabama for the top spot. 247 ranks UK’s signees as the No. 14 (Richards), 15 (Washington), 24 (Green), and 43 (Alexander) prospects in 2017.

Rivals.com also has UK at the top of their 2017 class rankings:

Commits: PF P.J. Washington (No. 17), C Nick Richards (No. 19), PG Quade Green (No. 23), PG Shai Alexander (No. 53).

Overview: In Washington, John Calipari has found a big-time competitor who can play at the three or the four, pound the glass and score from the mid range. Richards is a mobile big man who protects the glass, runs the floor, rebounds and scores opportunistically. Green is a traditional point guard who gets others involved first and makes tremendous decision. Alexander is a guard with size and excellent floor vision who can play the point or shooting guard.

Looking around, it’s possible UK holds onto this spot for awhile with no other school having more than two five-star commitments and another addition coming soon. Duke should surge up near the top once Wendell Carter commits next week and joins Gary Trent, but it won’t be enough to top what UK has built thus far.

However, this very likely will come down to another Duke vs Kentucky battle for the top spot, not to mention a couple of recruits considering both schools possibly being the deciding factors.

Five-star forwards Mohamed Bamba and Kevin Knox are both strongly considering Kentucky and Duke. If either school gets both of those guys in addition to what they already have, there probably won’t be much debate as to who has the top class.

But if UK is able to land just one of them and then get a guy like five-star forward Jarred Vanderbilt or five-star wing Hamidou Diallo, that could be enough to keep the Cats on top when the final rankings come out.