The Kentucky Wildcats have added walk-on Kareem Watkins to the men’s basketball roster, the school announced Tuesday. He will join the team after undergoing COVID-19 testing protocols.
A freshman point guard, Watkins finalizes the 2020-21 roster at 15 players. Freshman walk-on Isaac DeGregorio left the team last week due to personal reasons.
Watkins is a 5-8, 145-pound guard out of Camden, New Jersey. His stepfather, Dajuan Wagner, starred at Memphis under current Kentucky head coach John Calipari. Kareem’s stepbrother, Dajuan Wagner Jr., is the No. 1 overall recruit in the Class of 2023.
Averaging 21.2 points per game, no player has ever averaged more points per game under Calipari than Wagner, Calipari’s first one-and-done player.
“Kareem is a great kid with a terrific work ethic who is going to be a great addition to our team,” Calipari said in a press release. “Kareem knows our expectations of him. We want him to come in here and be a great teammate and help us in practice. His stepfather, Dajuan, who played for me at Memphis, has really instilled a drive in Kareem and I look forward to seeing him continue to develop here with family.”
Watkins played at Kingsway Regional High School in Camden. He played in 26 games his senior season and averaged 8.7 points per game. He scored in double figures 11 times in his senior season with multiple 3-pointers in 12 games. He dished out 4+ assists in 14 games in addition to 3+ steals in 10 games.
“These last few days have been surreal,” Watkins said. “I grew up wanting to play basketball on the college level. To have the opportunity to do so at a place like Kentucky and under a Hall of Fame coach like John Calipari is a dream come true. I understand what the expectations are of me. I’m excited to come in and be a part of this team and work hard every day to help my teammates and this team chase its goals.”
Watkins scored a season-high 19 points on six made 3-pointers vs. Woodstown with four assists. He also posted 16 points, five rebounds and four assists at Clearview and recorded 15 points, six boards and five dimes vs. Cumberland.
Check out some brief highlights of the newest Wildcat in action: