Not long after the conclusion of the Kentucky Derby, Kevin Knox, the versatile 6-9 McDonald’s All American, let the world know where he was going to attend college via social media.
Most experts believed that Knox would attend Duke, North Carolina, or possibly Florida State, but in the end he shocked everyone when his Twitter and Instagram posts showcased him in a Kentucky Wildcats basketball uniform.
Knox’s recruitment was over and he didn’t want to see the reaction.
“I turned my phone off for a day-and-a-half after all the chaos,” Knox said in an exclusive interview with CoachCal.com. “As soon as I pressed send on Instagram and Twitter, I immediately turned my phone off, gave it to my parents and let them have it for like a day-and-a-half. I didn’t want none of that criticism, all those people cussing at me and all that bad, negative energy.”
The commitment of Knox immediately bolstered the expectations of John Calipari’s team. One of the biggest questions about this team before his commitment was, is there a pure scorer on this team? Knox filled this void.
He’s a player that can score from virtually any spot on the floor. He has power-forward size with the shooting ability and skills of a guard. One of the reasons that Knox ultimately chose UK is because he will have more of an opportunity to play like a guard.
With Jarred Vanderbilt, PJ Washington, Wenyen Gabriel, and Sacha Killeya-Jones on the team, the forward situation is taken care of; Knox will now have an opportunity to work out on the perimeter, something that will prepare him for the modern NBA.
The addition of Knox to the team was arguably the biggest storyline coming out of the summer along with the return of Hamidou Diallo. Knox spent some time with the USA U19 Team in Colorado Springs and the reports were that he was the best player on the floor. It begs the question, would the team have won if Knox had been a part of it?
Unfortunately, he didn’t make the trip to Cairo because of a tweaked hamstring. Calipari urged Knox to go back to Lexington in order not to risk further injury. The U19 Team’s loss was Kentucky basketball’s gain as Knox was able to workout with his future teammates and play pickup with them as well.
Knox is the epitome of positionless basketball. He will contend for SEC Player of the Year and will ultimately be a top 10 draft pick. And to think close to nobody thought he would pick Kentucky.
Where else would any elite basketball player want to go?