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Tony Barbee watches Scottie Barnes; John Calipari watches Matthew Hurt

Barnes is the third-ranked recruit in the class of 2020 and a guy that Kentucky really needs to get. The same is true with Matthew Hurt in 2019.

Drew Brown - A Sea of Blue

Ahead of the CBS Sports Classic in Chicago, assistant coach Tony Barbee was in Fort Myers (FL) on Tuesday night for the City of Palms Classic. He watched a game that featured The University School vs. Vashon.

The University School is ranked as a top-five team in the nation and led by superstar Vernon Carey Jr. who recently committed to Duke. But his 2020 teammate, Scottie Barnes, is an elite five-star prospect who has a very unique skill set. Barnes is uncommitted and is clearly a priority for Kentucky in the class of 2020.

Scottie Barnes smashes a shot against the backboard as Tony Barbee watches in the background
Drew Brown - A Sea of Blue

Kenny Payne is listed as his primary recruiter, but it was Barbee who made his way down south to see him play. At 6-8, he basically plays point guard on his team and can do a variety of things offensively and defensively.

Barnes brings the ball of the court and plays the point on the full-court press. He is ultra competitive. 247 Sports officially lists Barnes as the No. 1 small forward in America and the No. 3 player overall.

Last year as just a sophomore, Barnes won the City of Palms MVP, an incredible accomplishment. Tonight, he got a triple-double with 13 points, 10 rebounds and 10 assists, while Carey poured in 35 more. The University School will be looking to repeat as tournament champion as the week moves along in Fort Myers.

The championship game will be Saturday night in a tournament that also features Oak Hill, Mceachern, and IMG.

Barbee also got a chance to see four-star Class of 2020 wing Cam’Ron Fletcher who is uncommitted. Recently, Kansas was reported to be getting involved with Fletcher, so it’s possible that Barbee was watching him also. Fletcher played okay, but Carey is a cheat code at the high school level, so it wasn’t much of a game.

2020 Four-star Cam’ron Fletcher
Drew Brown - A Sea of Blue

Other notable players at the City of Palms that Kentucky has shown interest in are Mceachern’s Sharife Cooper, and Paul VI’s Jeremy Roach, who is out with an ACL tear.

While Barbee is in Florida, John Calipari made his way to see Class of 2019 recruit Matthew Hurt on Tuesday. Calipari made it to see Hurt and Rochester John Marshall take on Austin. This comes three weeks after he took an official visit to Lexington.

Hurt is ranked the No. 7 player in the class of 2019 on the 247 Sports Composite. He’s got 18 offers, including Kentucky, Kansas, North Carolina, Duke and Memphis. He’s just officially visited North Carolina. He’s planning to visit Duke and Kansas soon.

We wrote this week about how Kentucky needs to land Hurt to salvage its 2019 class and finally land the impact big man it desperately needs.

For now, Hurt isn’t expected to decide until April. It’s unclear when Barnes is planning to make a decision, as he’s still in the early stages of his recruitment.

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