Joel Justus has been named one of the top-40 coaches under 40 by ESPN. This accolade should not come as a surprise to many Kentucky Wildcats fans, as Justus has proven time and time again that he is one of the best recruiters in the game.
Justus joined the Kentucky staff in the 2014-15 season as an analytics coach, but he took over as one of the lead recruiters after Barry ‘Slice’ Rohrssen left after one season, alongside Kenny Payne.
Since Justus took over as an assistant coach, Kentucky has landed the No. 1 class twice (2015 and 2020) and the No. 2 class four times (2016, 2017, 2018, and 2019) per 247 Sports.
Justus was ranked No. 25 and was one of a handful of assistant coaches to be on the list.
25. Joel Justus, Kentucky assistant (38)
When he first joined Kentucky’s staff for the 2014-15 season, he was an analytics coach who put together detailed profiles of each player on the roster. Now, he’s one of the nation’s top assistant coaches and a rumored candidate for multiple jobs that could open in the coming year or two. — Myron Medcalf
Since then, John Calipari has taken to Twitter to praise Justus and fellow assistants Tony Barbee and Kenny Payne.
All three could be leading their own program, including this one! Congratulations to @UKCoachJustus!— John Calipari (@UKCoachCalipari) May 13, 2020
Kentucky fans should enjoy Justus while he’s in Lexington, because if he keeps it up, he’ll be snatched up for a head coaching job in no time.