With the fall season here, recruiting is heating up in a big way for Kentucky Basketball.
We’re now less than two months away from the first signing period for the Class of 2019, which means we could see several more recruits pick the Wildcats in the coming weeks and months.
While much of the talk is (rightfully) surrounding the current roster, many are also looking ahead to a star-struck 2019 class. Thanks to the commitments of Tyrese Maxey, Kahlil Whitney and Dontaie Allen, Kentucky is as well positioned as any program to finish with the best class.
To do so, they’ll need to land several more big-time recruits, and it just so happens Kentucky is firmly in the mix for several of them.
So, who will Kentucky ultimately land?
Recruiting gurus Evan Daniels and Brian Snow recently broke down the recruitments of several Kentucky prospects on Daniels’ podcast.
The biggest topic was James Wiseman, who Kentucky remains in the mix for in a tight race with Memphis. Daniels recently told the Lexington Herald-Leader that, while the talk is saying Wiseman may favor Memphis, he won’t be changing his Kentucky-pick any time soon.
On the podcast, Daniels reiterated that he believes Kentucky still leads for Wiseman, and Snow agreed. This is significant news, as adding Wiseman to a class that already has both Whitney and Maxey would be one of the best Calipari has ever had.
All three are consensus top-10 recruits, and Wiseman is the No. 1 overall player. When Kentucky has landed three 247 Sports Composite top-10 recruits (2010, 2011 and 2013) under Calipari, they made the Final Four and won his only national title.
But Wiseman isn’t the only five-star center that Kentucky is in the running for. Isaiah Stewart is someone that Kentucky is suddenly coming on strong for. Snow has good connections in Indiana, where Stewart plays at The La Lumiere School, and he thinks Kentucky now leads for the big man.
Daniels added that Kentucky doesn’t tend to stay involved with recruits who are locked into Duke (ala Wendell Carter and Gary Trent last year), and Stewart was thought to be locked into Duke over the summer. That’s no longer the case, and Kentucky is now making a strong push.
While it’s good to hear Kentucky is in good shape for those guys, we also can’t forget just how special of a player that current Kentucky commit Kahlil Whitney is. The five-star wing is a consensus top-10 recruit, and both Daniels and Snow raved about what he brings to the table.
“He was tremendous this spring. Kahlil was phenomenal,” said Snow. “Big, athletic and has perimeter skill, and I think that’s a big deal for John Calipari in this class.”
“You could make a case that, if you were just looking strictly at potential and upside, that Whitney could have as much as anyone in this class,” said Daniels. “And I say that because of the physical makeup at 6-6, 190 pounds. He’s a freakish athlete. His body, while it certainly looks the part now, it’s far from being done developing. He’s going to get a lot stronger. He’s got very good size and length, and the other stuff is coming.”
Be sure to listen to Daniels’ full show here for updates on Kentucky targets Cole Anthony, Vernon Carey and Matthew Hurt, as well as more thoughts on Tyrese Maxey and Dontaie Allen: