The Kentucky Wildcats have had some monster recruiting classes under John Calipari.
Oddly enough, those have almost always come without the help of a so-called package deal. Some of the more notable ones to occur since Cal came to Lexington include Tyus Jones and Jahlil Okafor to Duke, Quincy Miller and Deuce Bello to Baylor, Greg Oden and Mike Conley to Ohio State, and most recently, we saw Wendell Carter and Gary Trent Jr. to Duke. UK at one point was heavily recruiting several of those guys before fading and focusing elsewhere.
You could include the Harrison twins as a package deal, though that came largely because they were brothers who were bound to play together in college almost as soon as they picked up a basketball.
Pont being, UK has missed out on the types of commitments between high school recruits to team up together in college, but that may be changing as soon as the 2018 class.
As ESPN’s Jeff Borzello writes, there are several package deals in the works that involve UK recruits. In fact, UK could land the biggest package deal of the 2018 class in Zion Williamson and Immanuel Quickley. This is a deal that’s only began gaining steam in recent weeks, but it looks as legitimate as any potential deal in this class.
There’s also the potential for Louis King to team up with AAU teammate Cameron Reddish in college. UK is heavily invested in Reddish, but an offer has not been extended to King, yet. It looks like that offer could come soon though, so the potential for Reddish and King to team up at UK is a very real possibility.
In a separate article, Borzello wrote about the potential package deal brewing between Quickley and Williamson in favor of UK.
It doesn’t take Elon Musk to connect these dots. John Calipari has made both players major priorities in his 2018 class, and the Wildcats are the most likely landing spot if Williamson and Quickley decide to team up in college. Both players will be in Vegas at the Adidas Summer Championships; expect Calipari to spend most of his time there.
But as Borzello notes, one of the bigger package deals being discussed comes in the Class of 2019, where Scottie Lewis and Bryan Antoine are heavily considering a package deal together in college. The two five-star guards have played together since the seventh grade, are high school teammates and play for Team Rio in the Under Armour Showcase.
Neither has a scholarship offer from UK yet, but they will almost certainly come for two players ranked No. 3 and 4 in 2019 by 247. Should both players decide to be a package deal to, say, UK, this could end up being a bigger coup than the Harrison twins.
Five-star juniors Lewis and Antoine have been attached at the hip for several years now. Their head-to-head battle at the Under Armour camp was the first time the two played a competitive game against each other since seventh grade, according to Antoine. The play on Team Rio together, and also attend the Ranney School (New Jersey) together.
Recently, the two were at their friend’s house -- and the topic of a package deal came up.
“Very serious conversation,” Antoine said. “Honestly, it was like 11 o’clock at night … We were in that room for a good two hours, talking about the options and stuff like that. The benefits of me and him going to the same school, what would happen. It was a very in-depth, serious conversation about it.”
UK has done well without package deals thus far, but with more and more players talking about doing this with other recruits, it’s getting harder for Cal o assemble an elite class without one of these deals.