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Article written by Grant Hammons

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36 responses to “Quick Peek Into the Future: 2019-20 Kentucky Wildcats”

  1. CatBlue in LR

    I appreciate the optimism, but any team Nick Richards starts and plays significant minutes for is not a threat for the national title. Nothing against him–he’s a fine young man. I’m just speaking about his basketball ability. He had trouble hanging on to the ball and had several turnovers against Abilene Christian. We need Tyler to come back and the kid from Minn. or that other frontcourt recruit (can’t think of names right now) to be a threat for the Final Four next year.

    1. dave1964

      I say if you think next years team has any more chance than last years don’t know much about basketball. If anyone thinks a team that relies on Richards for starting minutes will not even win the SEC.

    2. FlatTopsAndBlockedShots

      Kid from Minn. is actually graduate student, Reid Travis so he will not be returning. EJ Montgomery should be serviceable next year but not as good as year two PJ.

    3. CatBlue in LR

      No, I was speaking of Matthew Hurt, a 6-10 PF we’re recruiting (you may not have heard). Just couldn’t think of his name a while ago. Why would I be talking about Travis for next year?? I think Maxwell is the name of the other guy I referenced. Apparently, it’s down between us and Washington for him (and, no, I don’t mean P.J.!).

    4. IrishCat

      Looks like a solid roster to me. Plenty of balance, experience everywhere, and shooters at different positions. I think EJ is going to blow up next season.

    5. runningunnin.454

      I don’t think catblue is talking about Reid. I think he’s talking about Matthew Hurt from Mn. The other target is Jaden McDaniels.

    6. CatBlue in LR

      Yeah, McDaniels not Maxwell. Thanks for setting me straight. I’m getting worse with names. Just wait ’til you get old ?…

    7. runningunnin.454

      I don’t have to wait, I remember the ’58 National Championship, Ha ha.
      Oh, oh time to throw the little piggy around, Spring football game on SEC network.

  2. Cokely53

    Maybe I’m just being pessimistic but I’m just not seeing the current roster being a title contender. Gonna need a big jump out of EJ or Nick. That and Maxey looks like the only impact player from the freshman class. We could be good, just not a title contender.

    1. FlatTopsAndBlockedShots

      It’s a fair assessment. Nick I will not comment on but EJ should take a good jump simply because he will be playing more. Unless UK gets an addition of a reclassified player like Hampton (unlikely to commit to UK) or Dante then the real potential for the Wildcats is a likely Elite Eight for the 2019-20 squad.

    2. guus

      I agree especially if both keldon and tyler stay in the draft. Defensively I think we can be just as good this year, but without knock down shooters like herro, where will that offensive firepower come from?!? I think people often soon forget how lethal pj snd herro were offensively. Guys a freakin bucket for Christ sake. I worry there wont be a consistent enough shooting production from those guys. It’s very rare you get a herro kind of player, in a freshman…

  3. Blue4Life

    Still potential for Keldon to come back next year.

  4. DelrayCat

    We need another big guy that can play C/PF.

    1. DelrayCat

      And even if they’re not good enough to beat out Richards… We need more bodies. Use those scholarships!

  5. Rod Crandler

    We seriously need a big butt guy in the middle to have a serious shot. Anything can happen but when going up against teams with senior inside guys with power we are going to be lacking. Especially on the boards.

  6. Headhurts

    Early on this season nobody thought this team would be that good and they made the elite eight so next year even without PJ and Reid this team will compete for a title, never doubt coach Cal when r people gonna learn?

    1. dave1964

      Do you mean how we competed for the last few years. When you have to coach heart, toughness, will to win and hustle it’s a up hill battle.

  7. VirginiaCat

    Hate to say it, but next year does not look promising. It’s unlikely that we get Herro or Johnson back, and Hurt is probably going to Duke. That leaves us with a handful of veterans, yes, but they remain largely because they can’ make the leap to the NBA. I think we are seeing is the new normal that has been with us since the 2015 season.

    1. CatBlue in LR

      Yep, I’m afraid you’re right on target. I do think E.J. has big potential and could take a Fr.-to-Soph. step similar to the one P.J. made. But I’ve seen enough of Nick to conclude that jump ain’t ever happening for him.

    2. catsarerunnin

      VC is a dbag

    3. dave1964

      Hurt will be going to puke.

    4. Luether

      What VC said…

  8. Catcasey1

    Not sure a big big guy is needed don’t think Virginia had a big guy that was great and either did Texas tech

  9. ukcats1776.90

    the grad transfer is not any good at all. hes literally like if Brad Calipari went to bucknell then transferred. reid was pretty good and he was one of the best in another power 5 conference coming in. sestina wasnt even top 10 in one of the worst conferences in D-1. he will suck and UK will be a 6 seed that will be lucky to make it to the sweet 16

    1. runningunnin.454

      We have a tralfamadorian among us; Great, we won’t even have to watch.

    2. JT919

      What specifically makes Sestina no good? Also, do you have the Powerball numbers, since you can clearly see the future?

    3. TheMaxCat

      Experienced guards win in March and Hagans was a very young Freshman. Our guards last year had no veteran tutelage. I look for the backcourt to be much improved due to more experience and more depth. Up front nick and EJ should be better and another grad transfer and for a team that reloads with young guns each year that is a good idea. He may not be the savior but he adds maturity to a relatively young squad and at 6’9, 245 can stretch the floor and a bigger body was needed. We either add a returnee, a reclass or one of the two remaining HS senior targets or maybe even a surprise, regardless, adding 1 more player. We again will be in the hunt. Though I tend to believe what Cal said last year holds true again next year and that is for us to get where we want to go, Nick Richards will have to step up. Nick was a late starter at the game of hoops and will have less pressure knowing he will garner minutes now. Get to work Big guy.

  10. dballrb

    We lost in the FF..No it wasn’t a satisfying season. I’d rather lose in the second or third round than in a regional final or the FF/Title game. The lose deep in the tournament rips my heart out.

    1. KYFAN4LYFE

      We did? Well, that’s news to me.

  11. Fitz

    The Bucknell kid is far from being “not very good at all”. He’s not great, but a good player. Not near the caliber of Reid, but could be serviceable in certain match-ups.

    1. guus

      I think he is close to being as good as Reid. Obviously time will tell…but he shoots the three ball at a 40% clip, something Reid couldnt dream of. I’m curious to see his post production and defensive capabilities to see where the kid truly stands. Yeah Reid was a D1 power center, kind of a bruiser bang you around type center, but the Pac12 is and has been one of the absolute worst conferences in the country. So both Sestina and Travis might produce similar numbers when its all said and done. Is it Nov yet?!??

  12. Racerr11

    We always have talent and atheletes but what matters most is we have Cal the best coach in the country so as usual we are in the hunt and could be national champions

  13. MontyCats

    Literally NO one thinks Andrew Harrison’s return went well.

    I will enjoy next year’s team but won’t have high hopes for them. EJ will be great by his junior year and it could plausibly happen next year. Maybe having less competition takes the edge off Richard’s and he settles in. Hagans could be great and Herro coming back would change everything.

  14. VirginiaCat

    Points taken, MaxCat. Refreshing to see actual analysis instead of reactive name calling. I agree that Nick should get better, but remains to be seen if he improves or remains a project. Also agree that we need another player to blend into the mix. Many “ifs” at this juncture.

  15. JT55

    This team needs another big guy. The kid from Bucknell isn’t very good. Should be set in the backcourt.

  16. Dowser

    Hurt won’t come because Cal doesn’t give bigs a free reign to shoot. Imo