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Kentucky getting involved with Chet Holmgren

The 7-footer should be at the top of Kentucky’s list.

SLAM Summer Classic 2019 Photo by Michael Reaves/Getty Images

While the Kentucky Wildcats are likely focused on the upcoming season and 2020 recruiting class, one of the most intriguing prospects of any age group is sitting in the class of 2021.

Chet Holmgren is a 7-0, 190-pound junior out of Minneapolis, Minnesota. He already holds a ton of scholarship offers, including the Florida Gators, Gonzaga Bulldogs, Kansas Jayhawks, and Tennessee Volunteers, among dozens of others. Duke visited him last week, as well.

While there hasn’t been much buzz surrounding the Cats in his recruitment, it appears that’s starting to change as the Herald Leader’s Ben Roberts reported that UK assistant coach Kenny Payne has been involved in the early stages.

Coming into this spring, Holmgren checked in at No. 57 in the 247 Sports recruiting rankings. But when they updated their rankings earlier this week, he had jumped all the way to No. 2 overall, and for good reason.

“He’s one of the most intriguing prospects that I’ve ever evaluated, honestly,” 247Sports’ Evan Daniels told the Herald-Leader. “He stands 6-foot-11, he’s rail thin, but he brings a unique impact to both sides of the ball. He can step out on the floor and shoots the ball extremely well out to the three-point line. He’s got good hands and touch. And he’s also an impressive shot-blocker, and he can get to shots with either hand. He’s got good timing, and he competes — he’s got a little edge to him.”

You might remember Holmgren’s name from earlier this summer when he went viral for showing Stephen Curry up with his own move at his own camp.

That clip is just a snippet of the insane package Holmgren brings to the table.

He shot 49% from three and blocked 4.9 (!) shots per game on the Under Armour Circuit this spring and summer, both of which are absolutely ridiculous.

To give some context to his blocked shots per game stat, it more than doubled the total of the circuit’s No. 2 shot-blocker, and it was also more than any other TEAM in the league.

Holmgren is one of the most fascinating and fun prospects in the class of 2021. He’ll have two full years to add some much-needed weight and strength before he steps on a college campus, which will only continue to progress his game.

Kentucky should be putting the full-court press on this kid as soon as possible because players with this unique skill set don’t come along everyday.

And by the time he’s ready to make his commitment, he very well could be the No. 1 overall player in the class, as Jonathan Kuminga is widely expected to reclassify to 2020.

A 7-footer who can both shoot and block shots at such a high rate is ridiculous. It’s very early in the process, but John Calipari and Kenny Payne need to bring this unicorn to Lexington.

UK has already had a bit of luck with the 2021 class with Terrence Clarke committing and then reclassifying to 2020. Hopefully, that luck continues with Holmgren.

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