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Recruiting update on Kennedy Chandler ahead of visit to Kentucky

Kentucky is making a push for arguably the best point guard in 2021.

City Of Palms Classic Photo by Michael Reaves/Getty Images

John Calipari has an elite record when it comes to recruiting high-caliber point guard prospects in college. From John Wall in 2009 to Ashton Hagans now, Calipari always finds a way to get a quality floor general in his recruiting classes.

For the 2021 class, Kennedy Chandler is the obvious target for Kentucky thus far, and he will be on campus this weekend for a visit.

Chandler, a consensus top-15 recruit in 2021, is the only point guard prospect in his class with a scholarship offer from Kentucky. That came back on Christmas, and now he’ll be on campus for a big matchup against the Florida Gators this weekend.

He may only stand at 6-feet tall, but Chandler is a playmaker both offensively and defensively. During his season on the Nike circuit with Mokan Elite, Chandler averaged 14 points per game. During the semifinals and finals at Peach Jam, his averages jumped to 21.5 points and eight assists.

He might be shorter than some other top point guard prospects over the last few years, but Chris Neff, head coach of Mokan Elite, says Chandler uses his other physical tools to gain an advantage on both ends, as Neff told Ben Roberts of the Herald-Leader.

“He’s pretty quick, which helps. But his No. 1 trait is he’s fast, which are two totally different things. Like, he’s fast. It’s like he’s got jet engines coming out of his rear end - he’s just so fast down the floor, and that lends itself to him being able to go to other gears that some people cannot. Whether it’s in the halfcourt or not, it feels like transition. It feels like he’s in a run, and he’s racing you to the rim, and you ain’t gonna win,” said Neff.

As far as his recruitment, Chandler recently cut his list down to 10 schools. That list consists of Kentucky, North Carolina, Duke, Michigan, Kansas, Memphis, Tennessee, Florida State, USC and Ole Miss. At this moment, Duke leads with 100% of his Crystal Ball prediction, even though only two predictions have been submitted.

Rivals recruiting expert Corey Evans has said that Duke may be Chandler’s dream school, but it’s too early to make a call on his decision.

“I think it’s the dream school. I think Duke was the school he always wanted that offer from. I think that’s why Duke leads. But, there’s still a lot of time to go,” said Evans.

At the very least, UK is very much on Chandler’s radar and the Wildcats are very much involved with him at this point.

“That list is blue bloods. I can’t imagine Coach Calipari and that staff at the University of Kentucky being fearful of anything in recruiting. Obviously, he’s coming to visit. So, they’re right there. I don’t see a decision coming anytime soon. I think they’re in the mix,” Neff said about Kentucky and Chandler’s decision.

It seems like Chandler will take his time gathering information with his family during this process and he still has time to weigh everything out before he makes a decision since he’s still just a junior. Chandler would also be a major piece for any program because he’s just as much of a recruiter as he is a point guard prospect. he has been linked to rumors of teaming up with other players in 2021, specifically Paolo Banchero. Getting Chandler might mean even more as he could help sway other decisions for other big names in the class.

With Devin Askew reclassified to 2020 and plenty of other targets in future classes, Chandler is getting all of Calipari’s attention this weekend. Depending on what happens with Kentucky’s backcourt over the next two seasons, there may very well be a spot for Chandler to run point for Calipari at one of the top programs in college basketball.

With his visit this weekend, it’s a chance for the Kentucky staff and Big Blue Nation to make their impression on Chandler. He’s likely still far out from a final decision, but a strong visit after earning that scholarship offer back in December could go a long way for Kentucky with Chandler by the time it’s all said and done.

Be sure to read Roberts’ full report for more insight into Chandler’s game and recruitment.

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