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Big names coming to Marshall County Hoop Fest

Big names coming to Marshall County Hoop Fest

The Marshall County Hoop Fest released its 2018 weekend schedule on Thursday. We knew several star players would be in the event but we didn’t have a complete schedule, but now we do. The always loaded event didn’t disappoint for 2018 and may be shaping up for one of its best years yet. Fans will be able to see at least one UK commit and other big names.

Hoop Fest will run from Nov. 29th to Dec. 2nd.

Kentucky commit Dontaie Allen will play in Session 4 against Marshall County and Zion Harmon (assuming he’s eligible) at 8:30 p.m. CT. That follows a colossal matchup featuring UK’s top target James Wiseman taking on Chicago power Curie.

That’s not to mention two games featuring Prolific Prep and Aspire Academy, two prep schools that are loaded with talent.

Oh, and how could we forget, after D.J. Jeffries committed to Kentucky his Olive Branch, Miss., team agreed to play in the event. So the one-time Wildcat commit will lead his team against Scott County for a noon game on Saturday.

Some of the top teams boy and girl teams in the state will also be playing over the four-day span, so it should make for an exciting weekend in Benton.

Of course that Saturday will be the day of the SEC Championship game and the Cats will likely be taking on Alabama, but we’ll cross that bridge when we get to it.

More information and ticketing can be found HERE.

Hardly Committed E11: No Scottie Lewis, David Sisk and Halloween

Hardly Committed is back for another episode on the heels of Scottie Lewis’ commitment to Florida.  T.J. Walker breaks down the move and where Isaiah Stewart and Oscar Tshiebwe stand after visiting Kentucky over the weekend.  Highlights:

— What drove Lewis to Florida and what’s next for Kentucky at guard?

— We have another recruitment that mirrors Marques Bolden’s.

— T.J. shares his terrible food takes.

—  Where Keion Brooks and Jaden McDaniels fit into the equation.

— How shopping the grad transfer market works.

— Don’t leave TJ all alone on Halloween.

—  TPing gone wrong.

Subscribe to Hardly Committed on iTunes or via Android’s Podcast Addict app to get the podcast delivered directly to your phone.  You can easily listen on the KSR App, available on iTunes and Google Play, and streaming online is simple through Pod Paradise.

What Scottie Lewis to Florida means for Kentucky

(Photo: Kelly Kline/Under Armour)

Late Tuesday evening five-star guard Scottie Lewis ended his recruitment by picking Florida over Kentucky. After the Cats had some brief (and expected) momentum after Lewis officially visited UK in September, Florida visited Lewis and the reason why Florida was the leader for months eventually won out in Lewis’ recruitment.

Why Florida:

Lewis always thought highly of Gainesville, Mike White recruited him as long as anyone, his AAU coach (Brian Klatsky) is a Florida fan and Klatsky’s son (Lewis’ AAU and high school teammate) is committed to the Gators. The signs for months seemed to indicate Lewis would end up at Florida.

But then the Florida official visit happened. And Lewis didn’t commit. The Gators pushed for a commitment on the visit. That didn’t happen. They wanted him to commit after he returned home but before his traveled to Lexington. That didn’t happen. He checked out UK’s campus and the visit went swell.

My opinion is after that UK visit the Cats led. It may have just been for a few days, maybe just a day, but the visit went so well that for a moment Kentucky was in the driver’s seat, at least people close to UK thought that was the case. But the week after the visit Lewis didn’t commit and had no plans on announcing. The pro-UK feelings mellowed out and Lewis went into the weekend still uncommitted with no immediate timetable.

It seems that Lewis realized that when he traveled to USA Basketball this upcoming weekend that he was going to be hounded by media members about UK and Florida. We said on the Monday Insider Notes that if Lewis committed this week it would be to the Gators. That happened.

Of course he also scrubbed pictures of him in UK gear from his social media, which appeared to be a giveaway in his recruitment.

What’s Next for UK:

I said on Twitter on Tuesday night this was a blow for Kentucky and several UK fans disagreed. This isn’t the end of the world. Kentucky still has a great chance to finish with the No. 1 class in 2019 and if the Cats didn’t sign another wing player or guard I think John Calipari would be fine for the 2019-2020 season.

But Kentucky really liked Lewis and wanted to land him. Bigs are more of a priority at this point but they viewed him as a role player on the 2019-2020 team and that would be a damn good role player to have on the roster. Lewis could have been the sixth man and that would speak to UK’s depth and talent level. It seemed like a great situation for Calipari and there’s no denying Kentucky’s eagerness to land Lewis.

The only uncommitted guard that currently is being recruited by Kentucky is Cole Anthony, and as of today he seems like a longshot. Anthony is a North Carolina lean, but has said he plans on waiting until the spring to make a final decision. Obviously that could change, but even if Anthony does wait it doesn’t look promising for him to end up in Lexington.

Maybe a 2020 player reclassifies, but most reclassification rumors surrounding guards were centered around UK target R.J. Hampton (who picked up an offer from UK on Tuesday) and he has already announced he’s staying in 2020.

Kentucky could also potentially play Kahlil Whitney or Dontaie Allen at the two position, and still sign Jaden McDaniels or Keion Brooks, who could play on the wing. Somewhat the inverse of what Calipari has done in previous season- ignore the wings and have three guards. Maybe he could ignore a true two-guard and just have a couple wings to go with Maxey. As long as the guards and wings can shoot, you can get creative.

But most likely UK will return a guard or two from this season’s team:

Quade Green

Ashton Hagans

Immanuel Quickley

Jemarl Baker

Tyler Herro

I wouldn’t have guessed six months ago that Herro would be the most likely to leave after one season, but here we are after his impressive showing in the Bahamas. The plan has always been for Hagans to leave after one season, but he may be most likely (sans Baker) to return after his showing in the Bahamas.

But without getting to high or low from Bahamas performances, Hagans and Herro could both leave and the Cats would be perfectly fine in 2019-2020 with Green, Quickley and Maxey. That’s just one scenario but there are several others.

I’d be shocked if Green, Hagans, Quickley and Herro all left, especially with a starting position left on the table.

Kentucky could also potentially add a gran-transfer guard (which are a dime a dozen compared to grad-transfer bigs). It’s obviously way too early to say names, but we would have a better idea come March.

So, recapping options for UK (in likelihood to happen):

  • Returners from 2018-2019
  • Play wings at the two
  • Grad-transfer
  • 2020 reclassification
  • Cole Anthony

Lewis to Florida is a bummer, but the Cats should be fine.

Ugh… Scottie Lewis commits to Florida

(Photo: Kelly Kline/Under Armour)

Well crap. Kentucky lost out on one of its top targets Tuesday night when Scottie Lewis announced his commitment to Florida.

A five-star wing from New Jersey, Lewis had been on the Cats’ board for quite some time. He took his official visit to Lexington a couple of weeks ago and met with UK assistant Tony Barbee as recent as earlier today. But despite all the work the staff put in throughout Lewis’ recruitment, and the fact he was spotted in UK shorts just last week, it wasn’t enough to keep him from becoming a Gator.

Oh well. Nice get for Mike White and the Gators.