EJ Montgomery made a surprise Monday morning announcement to say he has committed the University of Kentucky. The five-star forward picked Kentucky over Duke, North Carolina, Vanderbilt and many, many other programs around college basketball.
Considered a stretch-four, Montgomery, a lefty, brings another weapon to UK’s 2018-19 frontcourt that already projects to be dominant. He and fellow five-star Keldon Johnson will join the likes of Jarred Vanderbilt, PJ Washington, Wenyen Gabriel, Nick Richards and Sacha Killeya-Jones, although the future of the five returners has yet to play all the way out.
In the meantime, celebrate the addition of Montgomery by getting to know him.
Power Forward | 6-10 | 215 lbs.
Marietta, Ga. | Wheeler HS
AAU: Atlanta Celtics
|ESPN||No. 16 | 5 PF||Top247||No. 6 | 2 PF|
|Rivals||No. 11 | 2 PF||247 Comp.||No. 12 | 3 PF|
Calipari visited him on Sunday.
Coach Cal traveled to Georgia to meet with the Montgomery family in their Marietta home and to make one final push for Kentucky.
The Sunday evening in-home visit was a success, obviously.
He was once committed to Auburn.
Montgomery had originally planned to be an Auburn Tiger for his college basketball career. He committed in September of 2016, early in his junior year of high school, but a year later he decided to reopen his recruitment to pursue other opportunities. His decommitment came one day after Auburn assistant Chuck Person was arrested as part of an FBI investigation into corruption in college basketball.
He’s been on the radar for a long time.
EJ Montgomery has been one of the best talents in his class for several years. He was considered the No. 1 overall prospect in his class in the seventh grade, and began playing for the USA Men’s Junior National Team as an eighth-grader.
He visited Kentucky in late February.
Montgomery took an unofficial visit to Lexington to see the Cats take on Missouri back in late February. He had planned to take his five official visits in the near future, but that won’t be necessary now.
He really likes Kenny Payne.
Calipari’s track record was a major factor in Montgomery’s decision, but UK assistant Kenny Payne also played a big role in the recruitment.
“It was a big factor,” Montgomery said of Coach Payne. “We built a great relationship. He was a real guy. He told me straight up and that’s what I needed to hear from a coach.”
His first name is Efrem.
It’s his father’s name, so he’s Efrem Jr.
He comes from a basketball family.
Both of Montgomery’s parents played college basketball at North Carolina Central, where they first met. He has one older sister, Brittni, who played at Central Florida; and another, Brandy, currently playing at Auburn.
He admires Kevin Durant.
Montgomery’s favorite NBA player is Kevin Durant, who he models is game after. He has a long way to go to earn Durant comparisons, but there are similarities in their games.
He’s a Naismith High School All-American.
Montgomery was named Third Team Naismith High School All-American following his senior season at Wheeler, in which he averaged 26 points and 13 rebounds.
He was also a McDonald’s All-American, and scored 12 points and grabbed five rebounds in the McDAA game.
He can do this…