The college hoops season is still several months away, but the Kentucky Wildcats are still getting some nice offseason praise.
This time from ESPN’s Dick Vitale and CBS Sports’ Gary Parrish. Vitale has Kentucky in his ‘Super Seven’ for 2017-18. They’re listed at No. 4, trailing the likes of Michigan State, Arizona and Duke. Since those three have, at one point this offseason, all been national title favorites, Kentucky being right behind them is actually a nice spot to be in.
Here’s what Vitle had to say about them.
John Calipari lost a lot of talent to the NBA draft. Very few programs could lose Malik Monk, De'Aaron Fox, Bam Adebayo and then contend for a championship the next season. Calipari simply reloads every season with super talent. This year it is Kevin Knox, Quade Green, P. J. Washington and Jarred Vanderbilt among the new faces that will please Big Blue Nation. The SEC is getting better, but the Wildcats are in their normal spot.
In case you’re interested, here’s the complete list.
- Michigan State
- Wichita State
The crazy thing is Kentucky plays Kansas and Louisville, so we’ll definitely see how well this list holds up over the course of the 2017-18 season.
As for Kentucky’s praise from Parrish, that’s directed towards Hamidou Diallo and Kevin Knox, as he ranked the top five players at each position this year, and included Diallo and Knox at their respective positions.
He ranked Diallo the fifth-best shooting guard in the nation, saying “Diallo should be the nation's best freshman shooting guard, in my opinion. He'll benefit from the time he spent practicing with Kentucky last season.”
And he ranked Knox the fourth-best small forward in the country, simply saying “Knox is one of UK's next one-and-done stars.”
Both Diallo and Knox are Kentucky’s likeliest one-and-done candidates, and they may very well be the Cats’ best two players next season.