For the Kentucky Wildcats, the first two months of the offseason did not look promising.
While already having secured the No. 1 recruiting class in 2023, the staff missed out on the two players they targeted in the transfer portal - Hunter Dickinson and Keshad Johnson -, and it looked as if they wouldn’t return a single player that played 10+ minutes per game from last season.
That tune has changed in recent weeks as Kentucky has added to their freshmen class with the additions of Jordan Burks and Joey Hart, as well as returning Antonio Reeves, which may be the biggest news of the offseason.
Things continue to trend positively as West Virginia Mountaineers transfer Tre Mitchell has announced his commitment to Kentucky just days after entering the transfer portal as a graduate transfer, following the resignation of Bob Huggins.
Mitchell just wrapped up an official visit to Lexington, his only trip since entering the portal.
“Tre is from Pittsburgh, and I’ve known him for years. This was a unique situation, but as soon as he put his name in the portal, he was a player I knew we needed to pursue,” head coach John Calipari said in a press release.
“He brings leadership, experience, size, and versatility, and is a great fit for what we want to do. I know this is a win for us, and I believe this will be a win for him too. We are excited to have him as a part of our program.”
The addition of Mitchell would have been great for the Wildcats back in April, let alone in June. Standing 6-9, 225 pounds and having played four seasons of college basketball, Mitchell fills a position of need and also brings some much-needed experience.
Originally a class of 2019 recruit, Mitchell began his career at UMass, where Calipari coached from 1988-96. Mitchell, like Calipari, is also a Pittsburgh native.
In four seasons of play, Mitchell has played for three schools — UMass, Texas, and West Virginia — making Kentucky his fourth. For his collegiate career, Mitchell has averaged 13.7 points, 5.9 rebounds, and 1.8 assists on 48.3% shooting from the field and 34.7% three-point shooting.
After two years with the Minuteman, Mitchell transferred to Texas for the 2021-22 season, where he averaged 8.7 points and 4.0 rebounds across 24 contests in 18.6 minutes per game.
Mitchell then entered the portal again and spent this past season in Morgantown, averaging 11.7 points, 5.5 rebounds, 0.6 blocks, 0.8 steals, and 1.8 assists per game while shooting 47% from the field and 36.4% from three-point range on 2.9 attempts per game.
It’s fair to say Kentucky is getting a talented player, and one that makes this team very dangerous heading into next season. There will be some bumps in the road, but if Mitchell keeps doing what he does best and the freshmen live up to their potential, these Cats can make a deep run in March.
Now, check out some highlights of the newest Wildcat in action!
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