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NBA scout says all of UK’s freshmen need another year


After the Cats, a team many predicted to go 40-0, picked up their seventh loss of the season last night, everyone–from fans to media–is trying to figure out what happened with this group. Sadly, the bar was set way too high for a team consisting mainly of freshmen, and you can’t just pin the blame on the media. Cal and the players talked about the goal of going 40-0, and now that daydream has turned into a nightmare that seems to haunt the team in each outing. Adam Zagoria talked to an NBA scout this morning who was blunt about this group, going as far to say none of UK’s young players are ready for the league, including Julius Randle.

“Honest to God, people get so excited about Kentucky,” the NBA scout said by phone Friday morning. “And John [Calipari] does a terrific job getting those young kids, but at the end of the day, most of the time they’re going to let you down. And as good as they are, they need another year to learn how to win on the road and the whole thing.

“The truth be told, they all need another year. But Randle’s going to be a very high pick, so he’s gonna come out.”

Ouch. Go read more of the scout’s comments about Randle and the Harrison Twins over on ZagsBlog. After that, pray for two-and-through.

[NBA Scout: Media Overhyped the Freshmen; Weighs in on Embiid, Wiggins, Randle, Parker, Harrisons]

Article written by Mrs. Tyler Thompson

No, I will not make you a sandwich, but you can follow me on Twitter @MrsTylerKSR or email me.

104 responses to “NBA scout says all of UK’s freshmen need another year”

  1. John

    The fact of the matter is, this team simply can’t shoot, it’s hard to win when you can’t consistently knock down shots.

    1. Stu Katz

      You are right, I guess shooters aren’t needed in the Drible Drive or whatever they are running.

    2. JHK

      Shooters are absolutely needed in the DDO and I have really no idea why this particular subject is not a more common talking point !

      Drive past your defender, if the defense collapses, kick it out. This team can go that far. Problem is, opposing defenses don’t even have to extend their defense anymore because no one on UK can make a 3 to save their lives. Once you kick it out, you have to have guys able to shoot it when open.

      Doron Lamb + Darius Miller were both shooting 40+% from 3. They made the 2012 team unguardable after a single drive.

      This current team can’t shoot. They’re even worse shooting than the John Wall team that had superior guard play nonetheless…

    3. Knows Better

      This team is “The Apple Dumpling Gang”. The gang that can’t shoot straight!!! They can’t hit an open jump shot or a free throw. Also fire Rock Oliver. The team is weak and out of shape. That is why they can’t hit a free throw at the end of a game.

    4. grendel007

      Cal signs players based on their rankings numbers and where he thinks they will go in a draft, not because they can play the game he wants to run.
      Having the Kentucky name to attract players has actually been more of a hindrance to winning as when he was anywhere else.
      His first two, maybe even three, years pretty much had who he wanted already shored up based on the college where he was coaching before. And no one can deny that the Natty team was a freak of nature in their performance.
      Now he just throws out “You’ll be on TV every night” and “You’ll go first round” and they sign up.

  2. SteveBBN

    Ok, just curious, but if everyone minus Randle comes back, how would the scholarship’s work out?

    1. Rei

      They’d have to take one from someone. There are 2 open spots + two guys are going pro (Randle and probably Young). I’m not sure who would get the can then. Unfortunately probably Hawkins.

    2. Adorable

      Even in that scenario, Hawkins would still be a walk-on for a year. He could earn a scholarship again.

    3. Roofus Howls

      Guys on scholarship this year:

      2 seniors – Hood & Poulson
      2 sophomores – WCS & Poythress
      8 freshmen – Harrison, Harrison, Randle, Young, Lee, Johnson, Hawkins, Willis

      3 open scholarships for next season with Hood and Poulson departing.

      I’d guess hell freezes over if WCS, Young, and Randle all return. If that were to happen Poythress could always move to academic scholarship – or one of the in-state guys could roll off of scholarship (Willis or Hawkinis).

    4. Adorable

      Too late, Roofus. Rei already thinks Cal is gonna kick Hawkins off the team. Even though he hasn’t, and wont.


    I would be happy as hell to get all these guys back!

    1. beavis

      So we can watch this again next year ?????

    2. Butthead

      beavis – Are you f*****g serious? So you don’t like one-and-dones, but you don’t want them to stay? You people are impossible. Unbelievable!

    3. butthead

      Who would you take Beavis? The 96′ team?

    4. butthead

      You stole my thunder Butthead.

    5. beavis

      The B ball they are playing this season speaks for itself. Early out in both tournaments.

    6. Wow.

      I saw a guy post this, on this site:


      ‘I dont care if we win 10 National Champs. in a row, we shouldnt settle for an NIT ever.’

      Cal could win TEN (10!!!! that would be 18 NC’s) NAT. CHAMPS. IN A ROW, and this freak would still be mad about the one NIT trip.

      This fanbase – I love most, but some. Wow. Impossible.

    7. beavis

      So, I guess you like the way they are playing. If you think this group has any shot at the NCAA title this year, you are going to be very disappointed.

    8. Blue

      Please do not….I repeat DO NOT…..paraphrase one of my posts.

    9. Butthead

      beavis – stay on topic, please. What you said in response made absolutely zero sense.

    10. Carmine

      Hey WOW No UK fan feels that way so he is either joking or hes not a UK fan … We have stupid people no need to make them look worse!!

    11. .....

      ^ I’m just gonna leave that one alone…. too easy.

  4. JHK

    Like I said several times before, I disagree about Randle.

    He should go out to the NBA as soon as he can. He isn’t learning anything in college. He is the most double/triple teamed guy in all of college basketball, which will not happen in the NBA.

    The one time he had a one on one to finish off a game, he did. But every single possession is a one on three for Julius.

    Opposing coaches do not even bother game planning against UK this season. Our best outside shooter is shooting what ? 34% from 3 ? It’s horrible. All they have to do is tell their guys to “double team number 30 or collapse the zone on him. If he kicks it out, let the guards shoot, I don’t care. If they drive right into you, well jackpot, you’re in position already.”

    Julius is one of the very few playes to whom the NBA will be easier than college. He should go as soon as he can.

    1. T White


    2. T White

      I don’t know whats worse. People who comment about basketball and have know idea what they are talking about. Or people who know just a little bit about basketball and try to comment. Julius Randle is as NBA ready as any player we’ve had other than Anthony Davis. That’s including Bledsoe, Cousins, Wall, or anybody else for that matter. NBA teams do not play zone. In a league now dominated by 4’s who spread like to play around the perimeter and shoot, Julius will abuse NBA 4’s. Not like they will be able to double and triple him on a nightly basis. He’ll be 20 and 12 night in and night out.

    3. Say Tan

      T White, you’re high if you believe Randle will be 20 and 12 in the NBA. Teams aren’t double and triple teaming him because they respect his post game, they are doing it because he is a guaranteed turnover every time he tries to pass out or dribble out. Randle will be a good NBA player but 20 and 12 are all-star numbers

  5. Blue

    Well the twins do need another year to work on those complicated alley oops. We will rattle some rims next year I tell ya!!

    1. Shammer

      Blue, I don’t know how to quit you!

    2. 2mites

      This guy Blue loves his blue Kool Aid

    3. Carmine

      I dont see it quite like u Blue but i applaud how positive u are!!

    4. BaJesus has been set free

      wow next year we will be 40-0!

  6. Joe

    Why do these kids go to the NBA just because they are a projected high draft pick but they still arn’t ready? What’s it matter where your drafted if you just sit on the bench? Anthony Bennett is a prime example this year. He could have came back to UNLV and probably wouldn’t have been the #1 overall pick but probably still top 10, but he would have had a better rookie season.

    1. Rei

      I’d take the money and run too. But I’m not as dumb as most of the kids who decide to leave early and spend their rookie contracts on useless garbage.

  7. Joe

    Look at Terrence Jones. He could have went after his freshman and been drafted higher but he was more ready after his sophmore year. Look at him now. He’s starting for a top team in the Western Conference. Marquis Teague probably would be have a better career right now if he would have stayed one more year.

  8. ATB

    What will the media and scouts say if they do win it all, should they all go pro then?

    1. Blue

      Should the devil be cutting firewood just in case hell does freeze over??

  9. tyrus

    Harrison brothers come back a long with Poythress and Young should but doubt he’s hearts in to staying no matter what his draft status or lack of might be. Poythress to me has shown some improvement, not of late, but could use another two years. Fact is when I watch other teams play and then think about Poythress’s game, he’s an average player on an average team.

  10. beavis

    Just when did they peak ?

  11. UKBlue

    Jerry West summed up the entire freshman class in his recent remarks, and this especially includes our kids. These kids don’t like the comments from the fans, but they are earning the remarks. Randle will go to the NBA, and he will get killed in the NBA & the spin move will get lit up. Randle is having a hard time excepting the reality that he isn’t as good as he thinks. Young is I’m sorry horrible from a fundamental standpoint. The Twins might as well forgetaboutit on even thinking about the draft this year. These kids better pay attention because the way they are playing, if 1 scout is being this blunt, they are all likely thinking the same thing.

  12. Korean Tacos

    I’m still waiting on the mid-range/perimeter game that Randle had in high school to show up. Didn’t Cal say he was going to push Randle out there? Chad Ford said he was shocked we haven’t seen it, because Randle is really good out there

  13. Wow.

    Yup, beavis is not the “sharpest light bulb in the drawer”, if I may.

  14. chaz

    But I though Andrew could beat Michael Jordan!

  15. Jibberish

    Regarding that article — It’s clear Jabari Parker is the best Freshman in the country, and probably the best player period. I remember Drew FrankNUTS going on and on about how Randle and Wiggins were so much better than Parker. He couldn’t have been more wrong. I think Parker was actually under-hyped. Parker and Wiggins both made good decisions to join veteran teams with excellent coaches — and it’s paying off for them. But the KSR propoganda machine spun it that Wiggins and Parker made the wrong decisions and Randle was the only one that had the balls to play for big bad UK. Look at them now..

    1. JHK

      I’ve watched them : Parker and Wiggins never have to deal with double teams…

      Randle is double teamed every freaking time he touches the ball. It’s unfair to try and compair these guys. Julius could average 25 a game if he only had one defender on him but it just never happens. I’m sorry for Randle really.

    2. Jabari is the truth

      Jabari and Julius are the exact same player except for one fact…. Jabari has an NBA ready jumper right now! Also, he is under the tutelage of one of the best basketball minds of all-time. I’m calling it now, Jabari goes #1 to the LA Lakers and is the heir to KOBE’S Throne… Have you seen Lebron and Kobe ever come and watch a college player on the same night??? SC says they were there in support of coach K but I think they were scouting the young baller. Dont compare Jabari to Julius its like comparing Kevin Durant to MKG

    3. JHK

      Parker clearly has the better jumper, handles and outside game but he is nowhere near as strong and as good a rebounder as Randle…

      “The exact same player” ha ha. So wrong…

    4. Jabari is the truth

      JHK look at the double double numbers… Jabari is much stronger than he looks.

    5. Jordan Collard

      JHK that is exactly what Jibberish is saying, that Parker and Wiggins dont get double teamed because they have experienced/talented players around them and a Coach that knows how to run organized basketball plays to utilize their strengths. I think they did make the right choice. And im glad as hell Randle came to UK, but he would probably do better at KU or Duke. I feel bad for him too

  16. beavis

    I am waiting. When did this team peak ?

  17. classof68

    The cowboy hats are a big part of the problem. They don’t play basketball in Texas. A great player in Texas is usually just a good player elsewhere. Texas is a football state.

  18. Blue

    Hmmm light bulbs in drawers. That way I wouldn’t get my blue socks mixed up with my black socks. Damn that’s brilliance right there.

  19. bosshog

    I know they won’t come back, but all these guys do indeed need a lot more time. They’re not even close to being ready to compete at the next level, and are only marginally competitive at this level. Its obvious now that Ole Miss was simply a good match up for them. And that is the only way that they can succeed because they know so little about the game, have a lot of bad habits and struggle to have confidence in each other. And honestly, they don’t even know each other yet-you can tell on the court-it is the reason they make so many mistakes.

  20. Wow.

    Ask Not Jerry Tipton.

  21. beavis

    Hey Blue, leave Wow alone. He is having a hard enough time just putting the words together.

  22. Blue

    I’m that guy who thinks his jokes are hilarious. Even when no one laughs.

    And people tell him his jokes aren’t funny.

    1. Blue

      Hey you stole my moniker and maybe some of my material.

    2. Carmine

      Hes jokes are as good as any on here..

  23. Rick

    No one picked them to go 40 and o but you guys. What the hell are you talking about.

    1. Carmine

      Would be nice to go back and see who exactly said what about 40-0.. Cause i only heard Cal , KSR , the players and the fans talk about the 40-0 mark I dont remember any national media saying that at all…

  24. 2mites

    Well duh who can see NBA talent in anyone on this team. There is no way these guys are NBA ready and that most certainly includes Randle who is a good rebounder but little else. I know Cal will push as many as he can out the door but doing them no favors. Will be good to see who stays and who doesn’t. How many Orton’s are on this team?

  25. beavis

    My guess is he tries to screw knives into light sockets. Bet he has a hell of a time cutting up his meat. .

  26. Jim

    I hope Poythress, the Twins, Young and Randle leave. They are at best average players. Players like Kenny Walker, Mashburn and Chapman would have taken them to the woodshed.

    These guys have no heart, could care less about Kentucky Basketball. UK to them is basically a stepping stone (they hope) to the NBA and any of them will be crushed in the NBA including Randle. he isnt as good as HE thinks he is.

    1. Jordan

      You would know. I bet you started on your middle school team so that gives you inside analysis. Randle’s better than YOU think he is. Most draft boards, NBA GM’s, players, coaches say he is a top 5 pick.

  27. Katz licks Katz

    Last season’s record 21-12 (63%). This seaon’s record so far 21-7 (75%). Combined record over the last 2 season is 42-19 (69%). With all the supposed ranked talent, what is the problem here. Is a 70% winning percentage acceptable with all this best ever class and so on.

  28. BGCat

    Right now these players are average college freshman with above average athleticism. The mental aspect of the game still seems to be too fast many times in games. Some of these guys came in behind the 8 ball at the beginning from a fundamental stand point and we are seeing the results of it now. They also seem to have no fun or chemistry on the court probably makes the game even harder for them to play in. It might be time for us to stop worrying about where this team is going because we as fans don’t have any control over that, but just keep supporting these players and this staff through a tough season. They have harder jobs and more pressure than all of us can imagine. The last thing we can do is give advice to people whose jobs we can’t understand.

  29. Rick

    Many people picked them to go 40 and o WHO?

  30. Jim

    And to add to my previous comments, KSR built this team up as the greatest thing since sliced bread, calling the Twins “stone cold killers” so no wonder fans are up in arms after hearing how great they were supposed to be and KSR also called them the greatest recruiting class in history and calling for 40-0 and thats totally BS.

    Cal can only do so much with these guys and I dont blame him but I do wish he would recruit more players who want to stay longer than 1 year.

    1. 2mites

      How many games this year has Cal said himself he was out coached? His in game coaching is non existent. The recruiting on this team is pathetic too. Cannot recruit based on recruiting services. Not hard to see all these McDonalds all Americans were way overrated. We see better freshmen on every team we play almost. Time to analyze how to recruit to win and keep good players so UK can succeed not just the players.

    2. John

      I don’t know if anyone in the media was making the 40-0 prediction, but almost all of the media were calling them the best recruiting class of all-time. Unfortunately we have learned that these ratings too often are based on athleticism rather than basketball skill.

  31. 2mites

    he does’t cut his meat he just fondles it.

  32. Rick

    Come on KSR, WHO said they were going 40 and 0. Many people said they were going 40 and 0. WHO.

  33. beavis

    i don’t understand sarcasm, or what the hell them ” ” things are. But yeah, he’s the idiot.

  34. Sk54

    Its our obsession of following what the NBA projections are of our players that has really screwed up our overall expectations of every team Cal has put together. Why are we obsessed with a league that scalps our talent? I cannot speak for all of BBN, but before Cal came around no one around here gave two shits about the NBA. Now we spend so much time talking about mock drafts and former one & done’s that have had good games against the Memphis Grizzlies on a random Tuesday Night. I have really enjoyed Cal’s teams, but this system is hard to deal with because its ALL OR NOTHING every year. As a long time fan, there is always a feeling of hope that the Cats would make a run in March. That was tolerable and fun. When you have a Team that changes so much year to year, the pressure to win the whole thing each year makes the season seem like a formality, as you just want to get to the tournament to see if this Team can do it. Cal has set all this up, so I feel no sympathy when his critics come out. Patience comes with hope for the future, Impatience comes from Hype.

  35. Evan

    Wait! This cant be correct! This is the greatest recruiting class of all time!

  36. Jordan

    If most of the freshman come back, will the slogan be Cal is selfish and brings them back to make himself look good.(Like some said with Terrance Jones)? Would the phrase, Cal pushes them out the door, or Cal wants to coach a new team every year, cease to exist?

  37. Bankerbh

    What a dilemma. I think all of the freshmen would benefit from another year of college basketball. That said, what is the likelihood this group would be able to come back next year with a different collective attitude, heart and determination and a willingness to improve? Although Poythress will be a junior next year, he doesn’t strike me as one who will be a much needed leader. The best leader option may reside with Andrew. Are we ready to hitch our wagon to this group for another go ’round?

  38. Jabari is the truth

    Jabari and Julius are the exact same player except for one fact…. Jabari has an NBA ready jumper right now! Also, he is under the tutelage of one of the best basketball minds of all-time. I’m calling it now, Jabari goes #1 to the LA Lakers and is the heir to KOBE’S Throne… Have you seen Lebron and Kobe ever come and watch a college player on the same night??? SC says they were there in support of coach K but I think they were scouting the young baller. Dont compare Jabari to Julius its like comparing Kevin Durant to MKG

    1. Bankerbh

      Jabari is mormon. He may be serving his 2-year mission responsibility after this season.

    2. Bankerbh

      Whoops….posted under the wrong comment.

  39. UKAlum

    Cal should troll all of the complainers and play Hood, Lee, Willis, Polson and Brian Long for the entirety of the game in Gainesville.

    1. theSkinny81

      I 100% agree. I’d be happy if he did it at SC. Maybe that would shut some of these idiots up.

    2. UKAlum

      He would also sit on the bench quietly the entire time as well. Since, you know, he can’t coach in game.

    3. theSkinny81

      Yup. Let the Kentucky proud boys make the calls. I mean, Polson and Hood have practiced with NBA players for years.

    4. Shammer

      I’m all for it. I want him gone. He did well for 3 years…that was it. His system is not sustainable. Oh yeah, and he is a shitty coach.

    5. Shammer is a sham

      Shammer you can’t possibly want Cal gone more than we want you gone.

    6. UKAlum

      Shammer, no one is beating our door down to come coach UK. Everyone sees how the fan base eats people alive for the nothing. If we run Cal off then prepare for the worst.

  40. Jabari is the truth

    Do you realize NBA teams are tanking this year in hopes of getting Mr. Parker?? Its a no-brainer… There have only been 5 no-brainers in the last 7 years…. 1. Kevin Durant 2. Anthony Davis 3. John Wall
    4. Terrence Jones 5. JABARI PARKER

    1. Bankerbh

      Jabari is mormon. He may be serving his 2-year mission responsibility after this season.

    2. Jabari is the truth

      MAY be serving his two year mormon thing.. I highly doubt it! He’ll just cut a fat check to the Latter Day Saints and move to LA… WELCOME TO THE GREAT LAKE SHOW JABARI!

    3. Jabari poops ice cream

      Jababari Parker is nota no brainer. I dont recall T.jones ever be considered on the level of Wall, Davis, or DURANT. ever.

  41. Big Dave

    Yea after my comment got moderated, I’m done with this site. You had me just about everyday for 3 years, but this site has become a joke!

  42. UKkathy

    This team just makes me sad and disappointed.

  43. jeffrey

    Randle can go, he is ready, everyone else needs to stay. They’ll be riding the bench, or worst, in the D league.

    Also, THEY NEED TO LEARN HOW TO HIT THEIR FT’S, they lost because of that

    1. Come on people, you read our language every day.


  44. Jabari is the truth

    come tourney time all this frshman hype will be exposed by how deep they take their teams to the promise land.. Depending on seeding Duke – Elite 8/Final Four Kansas- Elite 8 Kentucky – sweet 16
    Syracuse – round of 32 . .. . . Sidenote FLA – NATIONAL CHAMPIONS UOFL – Runner up

  45. Kevin C.

    You don’t need to be an NBA scout to know that.

  46. Oscar

    Young and Randle should leave even though they need development, yet they can develop in the NBA. Their shooting is the problem. They really can’t hit free throws nor open treys.

  47. sgbaker

    I concur with most posters here. I have never appreciated the NCAA allowing these one and done players. Why not follow the CFB rules and allow none to enter the NBA draft until his high school class graduates have been out of school for a minimum of three years. I am also strongly against the NCAA allowing foreign students to enjoy scholarships to play BB in the NCAA schools. These players surely are not competing and attending classes and they do take up scholarship slots for American players. Just my opinion and no chance of change for the better. Just think if that rule were in effect 6 years ago what Kentucky basketball would be like today under Coach Cal?

  48. Stanley Kobylanski

    This team doesn’t have a three point shooter. They drive to the basket get fouled and can’t hit free throws. Teams know they can’t shoot so when they drive the center collapses and instead of passing they attempt to score against that defense. Thats why they have so many turn overs. they need to practice free throws and three point shooting.

  49. Andrew

    Don’t need an NBA Scout to tell us this. Every UK fan can see it with their own eyes.

  50. Jeff

    Fab five greatest rewriting class ever had 9 losses, we will be ready for the big dance

  51. bill

    Shut Up everyone just Shut up LoL

  52. Mark Liptak

    This group of players couldn’t “figure out how to win, win on the road” ect if they returned for six years!

  53. Rick

    UK players act like individuals on the floor, and as we have seen an average team will beat five star studded individuals. If I were drafting for a pro team, I would drop players who ignore their team and try to be the star to a low draft position. In the NBA, you better play with your team, not try to be the team.