Nick Richards, the #17 overall player in the 2017 class according to Scout.com, is planning on visiting Lexington this weekend for his first of five official visits. By all accounts, Kentucky is in great shape with Richards ahead of his visit.
Scout Recruiting Analyst Evan Daniels said in an interview with the Lexington Herald-Leader earlier this week that he now believes Richards is the 2017 player most likely to commit to the Wildcats.
“They appear to be in really good shape with Nick Richards,” Daniels said. “They certainly appear to be the favorite, but Nick hasn’t said that. So I guess we’ll see how it goes. Obviously this visit will be big for him.”
Daniels said last week he thought P.J. Washington was the likeliest commitment for UK, but while the Cats are still in great shape there, Richards now looks like the recruit who could commit first.
Many other recruiting analysts agree with Daniels, as Richards 247 Sports Crystal Ball shows each of the 10 experts siding with Kentucky.
With everything trending Kentucky’s way, it seems likely that a commitment could be on the horizon, with some thinking possibly as early as this weekend when Richards is in Lexington. While it is certainly possible, I am not sure that will be the case as he has a weekend visit planned for Arizona the very next weekend.
Richards stated multiple times over the summer that he had a desire to wait until the spring to announce a commitment but many believe that timetable could be shifting.
Richards averaged 12 points per game, 9.8 rebounds, and 1.9 blocks in about 23 minutes per game on the Nike Circuit this summer. Most agree that his biggest strengths are rebounding and defense, with plenty of room for improvement in his offensive game. His Scout analysis says that he is one of the better rebounders and rim protectors in the class.
Needless to say, landing Richards would be a great starting point for putting together another top recruiting class in 2017.