When it comes to the transfer portal, John Calipari is, in fact, awake.
Since the spring portal season began, the Kentucky Wildcats were noticeably quiet for several weeks, leading some to wonder if Calipari was asleep at the wheel when it came to filling out the rest of the 2023-24 roster.
While the Cats are bringing in a loaded five-man recruiting class, they’re also in position to lose just about all of last season’s roster in terms of the primary rotation.
- Jacob Toppin and Cason Wallace are gone for good.
- CJ Fredrick may retire from basketball.
- Chris Livingston has been widely expected to depart as well, even if the latest buzz suggests a return is possible.
- Oscar Tshiebwe and Antonio Reeves are testing the NBA Draft waters and want to begin their pro careers.
- Sahvir Wheeler is leaving via the transfer portal, while Daimion Collins is expected to do the same.
So yeah, Kentucky showing little to no interest in the transfer portal for several weeks was concerning to say the least.
Thankfully, that’s changing in a big way in the form of Michigan Wolverines transfer Hunter Dickinson.
While Kentucky did contact Dickinson when he first entered the portal, it did not appear there was significant interest between the two sides.
That changed Thursday morning when news broke that Dickinson would officially visit Kentucky beginning Sunday. It will come after Dickinson visits the Kansas Jayhawks.
Among the things Dickinson revealed include:
- Calipari actually flew to Michigan recently to visit Dickinson for two hours at a local airport.
- Dickinson wasn’t planning to visit Kentucky this time around since he already visited in high school. However, Calipari convinced Dickinson to visit again, in part because Kentucky now has a different strength coach in Braden Welsh. Dickinson mentioned his next school’s strength and conditioning program is very important to him.
- While Dickinson did not discuss what was said about Oscar Tshiebwe, he did have a telling update, saying “I don’t want to say what (Oscar is) doing because that is his business, but obviously, whatever we talked about was good enough for me to take the visit, so I guess that’s news right there.”
It certainly is news, as that statement certainly makes it sound like Calipari is expecting Tshiebwe to move on. If that’s the case, then landing Dickinson is a massive key to how good the 2023-24 Kentucky Basketball roster can be.
You can listen in to the full episode below for more insight from Hunter Dickinson.