By Nick Roush on ©May 11th, 2019 @ 3:30pm
The Big Blue Nation’s favorite news breaker is back at it again.
Kentucky point guard Ashton Hagans is a big fan of Instagram. Throughout the NCAA Tournament, his Instagram usage gave fans a sneak peek into the P.J. Washington saga, shedding light on an otherwise unclear situation. Last night he revealed some news that will pique the interest of conspiracy theorists.
In the middle of a Q&A on his Instagram story, Hagans posed this multiple choice question to his followers:
Those who are proficient at connecting the dots, like friend of the program KY_Clips, noted that one other potential future Wildcat is a big fan of the deuce, Jaden McDaniels.
Maybe Hagans isn’t ditching his number for Jaden McDaniels. Maybe Hagans just wants to wear the same number he wore at Newton High School. After all, Quade Green had No. 0 claimed prior to the start of last season.
Maybe the No. 2 isn’t for Jaden McDaniels. Maybe it’s for another incoming Wildcat, Kahlil Whitney. The Dragon wore the deuce on the AAU Circuit and at Roselle Catholic. Well, he’s not taking it to Kentucky.
If you need to connect more dots on social media, you may have also noticed that McDaniels started following Dontaie Allen on Instagram today. You know who else started following Allen the day before he committed? Johnny Juzang.
Speculation aside, we still do not definitively know when McDaniels will make a college announcement. Reports circulated yesterday that McDaniels would chose on May 20, only for the report to be quickly refuted by his trainer. 247’s Evan Daniels does not know exactly when McDaniels will decide, but it will be soon.
The final day of the spring signing period is May 15. Until Wednesday, enjoy reading all of the social media tea leaves.
By Nick Roush on ©May 11th, 2019 @ 11:00am
It’s good to see money has not changed Kentucky’s all-time leading rusher. Benny Snell is gonna Benny Snell.
Following his first NFL workout with the Pittsburgh Steelers at rookie mini-camp, reporters asked Snell about how he closed out games for the Wildcats, even though everyone in the stadium knew he was getting the ball.
“That’s just Benny Snell football,” the running back said as one reporter cracked a smile in the background. When asked to explain what exactly is Benny Snell football, Snell replied:
“Benny Snell football is — it could be second and three, third and three; it could be fourth and two, fourth and goal, third and goal or four-minute offense. It’s just feeding him, feeding him, let him run it up. He’s going to get up. He’s having fun. He might dance a little bit, but he’s gonna run back, he’s gonna do it again and everybody in the stadium, both teams know what’s happening.”
Snell is prepared to do whatever it takes to make a difference for the Steelers as a rookie. “I’m willing to fill my role in whether it’s on special teams, offense, defense, whatever they need me for, Benny Snell’s going to do it at his best.”
Benny Snell talks about nerves, his possible role, and explains what 'Benny Snell football' is. pic.twitter.com/3mYlqBHXft
— Pittsburgh Steelers (@steelers) May 10, 2019
Never change, Benny. Never change.
John Calipari may be in Italy, but he just added another impressive recruit to his roster for next season. Four-star wing Johnny Juzang just announced he’s committed to the University of Kentucky. He’s listed as the No. 30 overall player in the class, according to 24/7 Sports’ final rankings.
The Studio City, California native just posted the news on his Instagram, saying “Big Blue Nation, stand up.” He chose the Cats over Virginia, Kansas and Oregon.
View this post on Instagram
After reclassifying into the 2019 class just weeks ago, Juzang was thrust into the spotlight, quickly moving onto Kentucky’s radar, especially after news broke of Jemarl Baker’s pending transfer. He’s listed at 6-foot-6 and 200 pounds. In high school, he averaged 22.8 points, 9.5 rebounds and 2.8 assists per game throughout 26 appearances. Juzang shot 43 percent from the floor, 35 percent from the three-point line and 85 percent from the charity stripe.
With the commitment, the Cats currently have the No. 1 recruiting class in the nation, followed by Arizona then Duke. Before Juzang’s commitment, UK was in third place, but the addition of the four-star player pushed the Cats back to the top. This isn’t necessarily finalized, as Memphis could make a move for the No. 1 spot if they land RJ Hampton and Boogie Ellis. However, if Coach Calipari is able to land Jaden McDaniels, Kentucky could still snag one of the top spots.
Regardless, Juzang’s commitment is great news for next season’s Wildcats. Welcome to the BBN!
By Adam Luckett on ©May 10th, 2019 @ 9:30pm
With Johnny Juzang officially joining the program, we are now starting to get a feel for what John Calipari’s 11th team at the University of Kentucky will look like. Seemingly every preseason ranking has UK in the top five and it’s clear that the Wildcats will again be a national title contender in 2019-2020. However, their playing style could be a bit different.
***Disclaimer: For this exercise, we’re going to assume that both EJ Montgomery and Nick Richards will be back on campus and that top-10 wing/small ball four Jaden McDaniels will be joining the top ranked recruiting class in the country.***
Throughout his coaching career, John Calipari has preferred to use a traditional two big lineup and it has been a big reason for his success. Yearly, Cal fields one of the sport’s best defensive teams but as the game evolves the lack of shooting hurts the Wildcats on the offensive end. We’ve seen Kentucky go small a couple times before and he’s going to have to do it again this upcoming winter on the hardwood.
Sitting here the weekend after Derby, the summer hasn’t even started but now is as good of a time as any to evaluate how UK will look next season. There’s no question that there is plenty of depth on the roster to go with length and interchangeable pieces on the perimeter. No matter what the look, John Calipari is going to have plenty of tools to tinker with.
To start off in the backcourt, it doesn’t feel like much of a discussion. Ashton Hagans returns for his sophomore season and he’ll run the point. Next to him will be five-star true freshman combo guard Tyrese Maxey. The top-1o recruit is a combo guard who will bounce back in forth between the one and the two. On paper, Kentucky will have on of the best backcourts in college basketball.
On the wing is where some major discussion will be. Keion Brooks Jr. is the lowest rated five-star recruit in the class, but he should be starting over at least one other. The 6-foot-7 wing picked Kentucky over Indiana and he brings some great versatility to the floor. Brooks plays within himself on the offensive end and has a polished game to this point in his development.
At the four will be another top-1o recruit. Jaden McDaniels, potentially, will be a huge recruiting win for Kentucky and if it happens he’ll likely lead the team in minutes. The long, lanky, athletic forward can put the ball on the deck and get wherever he wants on the floor. His length will make a significant impact on the glass and defensive end. Shooting will be a question, but there’s no doubt McDaniels will be an impact player for UK this season.
That’s four players that have been named and we haven’t even gotten into the paint yet. In 2016 and 2017, we saw Cal use a space floor on offense. When utilized, both Alex Poythress and Derek Willis were used in a stretch four role. That meant only one player in the post at one time. That’s what will happen for the majority of minutes this year.
Back for his sophomore year, potentially, EJ Montgomery will look to live up to that top-10, five-star ranking he was tagged with leaving high school. With a spaced floor, it will be easier for UK to take advantage of Montgomery’s unique skill set. The Georgia native is a rim running big who will be at his best catching lobs and occassionally shooting mid-range jumpers and baby hooks off quick post touches in the paint. On the glass, Kentucky will need the sophomore to really make an impact.
The first guy off the bench will likely be Immanuel Quickley and he’ll be the top backup at the one and two spots. However, don’t expect the sophomore to play much point. Right now it seems like that Hagans or Maxey will have the ball in their hands at all times so a spot shooter and energy player will need to play next to them. Getting shooting and solid defense from Quickley off the bench will be greatly needed.
On the wing, UK has all kinds of options off the bench. The first one people will want to talk about is top-12 composite recruit Khalil Whitney. It will come as a surprise to some to have him on the bench, but at this point Keion Brooks Jr. has the more developed game. Whitney, however, can play the three of four for Kentucky and will be a monster for teams to deal with in transition. Playing under control and with feel in the half-court will be Whitney’s biggest challenge at the college level.
Johnny Juzang is UK’s newest member to the 2019 recruiting class and the California native is bringing much needed shooting ability to the roster. Juzang can stroke it from deep, but that’s not all he brings to the table. The 6-foot-6 wing can play the two or the three in addition to being a solid rebounder and having a ton of defensive potential. Fellow freshman Dontaie Allen is built in the same mold and could be an answer if the Cats find themselves in foul trouble on the perimeter.
With the expectation for UK to be using a “4-out 1-in offense”, the perception will be that UK will not need a ton of big depth. However, that is not the case. In some specific matchups, UK will be forced to play a two-big lineup and right now they have two quality upperclassmen to bring off the pine. Nick Richards will be a junior who can bring size, length, athleticism, and rim protection to the lineup. Grad transfer Nate Sestina can space the floor with his three-shooting ability in addition to being a quality back to the basket block scorer. Cal will have options in the post.
There is still time for Kentucky to add more bodies to the roster and the coaching staff still needs to close the deal with Jaden McDaniels. That still doesn’t mean you shouldn’t feel very optimistic about the team. Kentucky has a loaded backcourt with plenty of quality options on the wing. Shooting and finding a reliable player that can go for 30 minutes per night in the paint still remain the biggest question marks. Sure this team will have some wrinkles to iron out, but they have the talent and the ability to be in the national mix.
By Jack Pilgrim on ©May 10th, 2019 @ 8:00pm
Editor’s Note: This piece from Jack Pilgrim originally ran after Johnny Juzang announced he would make the leap into the 2019 class. Now that he’s a Cat, allow KSR’s insider the chance to break down Juzang’s game, his background and how he will fit at Kentucky.
This evening, 2020 five-star wing Johnny Juzang announced he would be making a jump to the class of 2019, with many recruiting analysts submitting predictions in favor of the Wildcats not long after.
The 6-foot-7 prospect out of Studio City, CA is set to officially visit Kentucky starting on Monday, April 29, and there are rumblings that the Wildcats could receive a commitment on or soon after the trip.
So what do we need to know about Juzang and the likelihood that he ends up in Lexington next season?
Let’s take a look.
Who is Johnny Juzang?
In terms of basic information and measurables, Juzang is a 6-foot-7, 210-pound shooting guard/small forward out of Studio City, CA. Holding offers from Kentucky, Kansas, Virginia, UCLA, and USC, among others, Juzang is considered a consensus top-25 prospect in the class of 2020. ESPN lists him as the No. 19 overall prospect in the class, while Rivals has him at No. 22 and 247 Sports lists him at No. 24 overall.
On the offensive end, Juzang is one of the most gifted shooters in all of high school basketball. He’s got fluid mechanics, muscle memory down to a science, midrange, can hit shots from all three levels, catch-and-shoot, off the dribble, etc. With a nickname of “J-Silk,” it’s no surprise that he’s an incredibly smooth player. Last season for Harvard Westlake, Juzang averaged 22.8 points, 9.5 rebounds, and 2.8 assists per game, including a 35% clip from three. Solid, but not the best. Looking back to his time with the Compton Magic on the Adidas Gauntlet last season, however, the Kentucky target shot an impressive 43.4% from three, which is the number most believe closely shows his true shooting abilities.
Some recruiting analysts are comparing his game to that of a 6-foot-7 version of Doron Lamb, which would certainly provide a massive boost to Kentucky’s 3-point shooting next season.
Defensively, Juzang’s length is there, but he needs to improve on his lateral mobility and quickness to stay in front of smaller, faster guards. Kentucky is recruiting him to play at the two and three next season, so that will need to improve over time.
From a training perspective, Juzang has seen a spike in development over the last year or so not just with his basketball skillset, but his body. Over the course of his junior season, the forward prospect has put on 20 pounds of muscle, with those close to him calling him a “gym rat” who now lives in the weight room. He’s always been a gifted shooter, but now, he’s building up the strength necessary to be a force when driving the paint and finding separation against elite defenders. He’s also become a phenomenal rebounder, certainly a plus.
With Kentucky losing Tyler Herro, Keldon Johnson, and Jemarl Baker on the perimeter, Juzang would be the perfect addition to rotate in with Ashton Hagans, Tyrese Maxey, and Immanuel Quickley, especially from a shooting perspective. Maxey is considered arguably the best shooter in the class of 2019, and Juzang has long been considered one of the best in the class of 2020. Bringing both of them in at the same time will bring back memories of Brandon Knight and Doron Lamb in the 2010-11 backcourt.
This evening, Juzang announced to the world that he would be making the jump to the class of 2019, a move that shouldn’t come as much of a surprise.
“First off, I want to thank everyone who’s helped me and been there for me up to this point,” he said. “I’ve had an amazing experience in high school, and wouldn’t have had it any other way. I’d like to thank Harvard Westlake: the coaches, the trainers, the teachers, and the staff for making my 3 years so special. I also want to thank Compton Magic for all they’ve done for me in my journey thus far. And of course, I want to say thank you to my family and friends who support me no matter what. With that being said, I will be reclassifying to the class of 2019 and attending college this fall.”
There was a quiet buzz about it being a possibility over the last several months, but they seriously grew louder over the last week or so. Once Kentucky traveled out to California and offered him a scholarship face-to-face, the buzz soon became that not only is it likely that he made the jump to 2019, it would be a shock if he didn’t.
Now that he has shared the news with the world, it’s also important to factor in that Harvard Westlake, Juzang’s high school, does not have an early graduation program for students, so he will need to get his final academic credits in order elsewhere. His family believes they have a path in place that should make this transition relatively easy.
Already 18 years old, Juzang is both physically and mentally ready to make the jump. Tonight, he made that official.
Also in his reclassification announcement, Juzang said that he would be making a decision “in the next few weeks,” and I think that might even be generous.
Immediately after his in-home visit concluded with Kentucky, rumors leaked out that the Wildcats had done enough to jump out in front as the favorite to land the wing prospect. They offered him a scholarship for both 2019 and 2020, telling him that he’d be welcome whenever he wanted to end up in Lexington.
That being said, they pushed for Juzang to join Kentucky’s class of 2019 and pointed out his specific role on the roster for next season. From there, they convinced him to take an official visit to Lexington starting on April 29, where sources tell KSR that the staff believes they can seal the deal on a commitment before he leaves campus. If not, the expectation is that an announcement comes not long after that.
Outside of Kentucky, Juzang holds offers from Kansas, Virginia, Oregon, USC, Washington, California, and Arizona State, among others. Though Kentucky is still considered the favorite, Virginia is seen as the team running No. 2 in the race, with Villanova (who doesn’t have a confirmed offer) also making a recent push.
Before John Calipari and Joel Justus visited and offered on April 19, Juzang also visited Virginia last October and Kansas in February of 2018.
As of right now, Kentucky holds 83% of all predictions on 247 Sports, including picks from recruiting insiders Evan Daniels, Jerry Meyer, and Andrew Slater, three of the best in the business.
In fact, the only person who doesn’t predict Kentucky to land Juzang is 247’s Dain Ervin, who made a prediction in favor of Stanford back in October of 2018. Since then, Kentucky, Virginia, and Villanova have all surpassed the Cardinal on his list, and I would be shocked if they are even in the running at this point.
Not only do I believe Kentucky lands the 6-foot-7 sharpshooter out of Studio City, CA, I believe they get it done during (or not long after) his official visit to Lexington next week.
And the documentary he released last week:
Come on down.
By Maggie Davis on ©May 10th, 2019 @ 4:30pm
The NCAA Men’s Basketball Rules Committee has just released their latest official recommendations for collegiate basketball. These rules would begin affecting Division I teams as soon as next season. The recommendations must be approved by the Playing Rules Oversight Panel on June 5 in order to be finalized.
The biggest potential change is the committee’s proposal to extend the 3-point line to the international basketball distance of 22 feet, 1¾ inches. Currently, the three-point line’s distance is 20 feet, 9 inches. The committee cited the following reasons for the change:
- Making the lane more available for dribble/drive plays from the perimeter.
- Slowing the trend of the 3-point shot becoming too prevalent in men’s college basketball by making the shot a bit more challenging, while at the same time keeping the shot an integral part of the game.
- Assisting in offensive spacing by requiring the defense to cover more of the court.
The NIT completed a “test run” of the longer trey during the 2019 post-season, and teams, on average, saw a slight drop in their 3-point success. Teams in the NIT hit 33 percent of their three pointers during the tournament, compared to the regular season average of 35.2 percent.
Committee members also cited positive feedback from the annual rules survey as well as from coaches whose teams competed in the NIT with the experimental international line.
The three-point line extension isn’t the only potential change the committee has recommended: they also propose resetting the shot clock at 20 seconds – rather than a full 30 seconds – after a field goal attempt hits the rim and the offensive team rebounds the ball in the front court.
Again, the committee cited NIT feedback, after teams experimented with the 20-second shot clock in 2019. The reduced time would also “enhance the pace of the game,” according to the committee.
This next ones feels especially relevant for Kentucky (*cough cough, UK vs. LSU): the committee recommends allowing instant replay review for basket interference or goaltending calls made during the last two minutes of the second half or the last two minutes of overtime. The proposal makes it clear that their recommendation is directed toward calls that have been made, so it’s unclear at this time if the change would allow officials the opportunity to review a potential instance of goaltending and then make a subsequent call.
Another proposed change would give coaches the ability to call a live-ball timeout during the last two minutes of action (either during the second half or at the end of any overtime play). Currently, coaches are never allowed to call live-ball timeouts.
The committee also recommends a Flagrant 2 technical foul and ejection for any player who uses derogatory language regarding an opponent’s race, ethnicity, religion, gender, sexual orientation or disability.
Again, each of these recommendations must be reviewed and approved by the Playing Rules Oversight Panel on June 5 in order to be enacted for men’s college basketball. Any approved changes would apply for Division I teams during the 2019-2020 season, and for Division II and Division III teams the following year, due to the potential financial impact of re-painting three-point lines.
What do you think of the proposed changes?
Incoming UK quarterback Nik Scalzo has been on the mend for quite a few months. As he enters his final weeks in Ft. Lauderdale, the gunslinger is ready to get loose in Lexington.
KSR has learned the future Wildcat has been cleared to return to football activities, just before newcomers are set to report for the summer term in June. As you can see, Scalzo is moving around like nothing ever happened.
Knee is feelin ? pic.twitter.com/VIzeMWrf7r
— Nik Scalzo (@NikScalzo) May 8, 2019
Something did happen to his right knee less than six months ago.
In search of his school’s first ever state championship, Scalzo caught a pass out of the backfield on a trick-play. He took an awkward hit, felt a pop and immediately knew something was wrong significantly wrong with his knee. After sitting out for three series, he returned to lead his team to a go-ahead scoring drive that put Cardinal Gibbons in the Regional finals.
“I went back in and played through it,” Scalzo told the Florida Sun-Sentinel. “I had to do most of my stuff with just straight arm strength; I couldn’t use my feet at all. I dropped back like Jay Cutler. You know how he used to do his backpedal steps? I had to do that because I couldn’t cross over.
“But I stayed in the game. I’m glad I did.”
Since he tore the ACL in his right knee last November, future Wildcat Nik Ognenovic helped Cardinal Gibbons win the school’s first ever state championship. All the while, Scalzo has vigorously rehabbed his injured right knee, two-and-a-half hours a day, five days a week.
Scalzo is getting healthy at the right time. Kentucky will need the mobile quarterback prepared to compete this fall. Following Gunnar Hoak’s departure, the only players behind Terry Wilson on the depth chart are Scalzo, Walker Wood and incoming freshman Amani Gilmore.
While many ruled out his ability to compete this fall, it’s business as usual for Scalzo (without all of the backflips).
By Drew Franklin on ©May 09th, 2019 @ 10:30am
Anderson County is serious about its middle school kickball.
In 2017, Chrystal Graham, then a seventh-grade teacher, threatened a student after a kickball game on the last day of school. Graham told the student she would “cut off his penis and shove it down his throat.” She was also accused of flipping off another student (with a double-bird!) and telling some of her students, “On three, kick Durbin’s ass,” referring to another teacher at the school.
Graham pleaded not guilty to charges of threatening a male student. She is back in court today.
Hot take: I completely get it. We used to have some kickball wars at West Broadway Elementary in Madisonville. I wish my teachers had this kind of spirit when Mr. Harris’ class was mercy-ruling us every time a pizza party was on the line. Should a teacher be saying that to a student in the classroom? Absolutely not. But when you’re inside the chalk and the kickballs are flying, I think anything goes. I read this as intense coaching and standing up for your team. I’d play for Graham any day.
By Maggie Davis on ©May 08th, 2019 @ 7:48pm
Kentucky is officially in the mix for one of the top-10 football players in the nation. Justin Rogers, a five-star prospect, is listed as the No. 1 offensive guard in the 2020 recruiting class, and he just included the University of Kentucky in his final top-5 list. The other four? Georgia, LSU, Michigan and Tennessee.
I will be committing May 20 at Oak Park High School let me know who trying to come DM me y’all have to see this be there at 4:00 pm????? pic.twitter.com/hGJSRkyCAT
— Justin Rogers (@AllAmerican52JR) May 8, 2019
Prior to the announcement, Rivals had Kentucky listed as the favorite at 44 percent (Georgia was the runner-up with 33 percent, followed by Tennessee and Ohio State). 24/7 Sports had a similar breakdown: UK at 33 percent, followed by Tennessee at 22 percent, Ohio State at 17 percent, undecided at 17 percent and Georgia at 11 percent. The inclusion of LSU and Michigan could shake things up a bit, while Ohio State is now apparently out of the running.
Rogers, a native of Oak Park, Michigan, is listed at 6-foot-2.5 and 311 pounds. Kentucky was the first school to extend an offer all the way back in 2016 – a fact that’s not lost on Rogers.
Kentucky was the first to offer ? pic.twitter.com/fZMa0S6mco
— Justin Rogers (@AllAmerican52JR) January 27, 2019
Although there are four other schools still competing for Rogers’ talents, the Cats seem to have the recent advantage. Rivals’ Justin Rowland submitted a prediction in favor of the Wildcats on the evening of April 28. Since then, 24/7 Sports’ Allen Trieu – who has gotten 93.75 percent of his 2020 picks correct so far – predicted Kentucky last Monday. 24/7 Sports’ Director of Football Recruiting, Steve Wiltfong, also lists Kentucky as Rogers’ top choice. Wiltfong has a 90.48 percent success rate so far with the 2020 recruiting class.
Rogers took an official visit to Lexington back on April 26, and he’ll visit the University of Georgia on May 17. His decision date is set for May 20.
Until then, the UK coaching staff will be all over Rogers – and they won’t be alone. DeAndre Square, a current linebacker for Kentucky, and John Young, a recent UK commit, are also working their magic.
???? we came a long way bro all that hard work paying off https://t.co/K719LZIKzw
— DeAndre Square (@d_square10) May 8, 2019
— John Young (@the_johnyoung) May 8, 2019
T-minus 11 days until Rogers makes his announcement. Let’s do this thing.
By Drew Franklin on ©May 08th, 2019 @ 3:13pm
We now know the list of the 66 participants in next week’s NBA Draft Combine and it does not include EJ Montgomery or Nick Richards, the two UK players still testing the waters. PJ Washington, Tyler Herro and Keldon Johnson are named, as expected.
There were reports that Montgomery would be in Chicago, but that is not the case. He and Richards should both be leaning toward coming back now.
The full list:
Alexander-Walker, Nickeil (Virginia Tech)
Barrett, RJ (Duke)
Bassey, Charles (Western Kentucky)
Bazley, Darius (Princeton HS (OH))
Bol, Bol (Oregon)
Bone, Jordan (Tennessee)
Bowen, Brian (Sydney Kings (Australia))
Bowman, Ky (Boston College)
Brazdeikis, Ignas (Michigan)
Brown, Moses (UCLA)
Clarke, Brandon (Gonzaga)
Claxton, Nicolas (Georgia)
Culver, Jarrett (Texas Tech)
Dort, Luguentz (Arizona State)
Dotson, Devon (Kansas)
Edwards, Carsen (Purdue)
Fernando, Bruno (Maryland)
Gafford, Daniel (Arkansas)
Garland, Darius (Vanderbilt)
Grimes, Quentin (Kansas)
Guy, Kyle (Virginia)
Hands, Jaylen (UCLA)
Hayes, Jaxson (Texas)
Herro, Tyler (Kentucky)
Hoard, Jaylen (Wake Forest)
Horton-Tucker, Talen (Iowa State)
Hunter, De’Andre (Virginia)
Jerome, Ty (Virginia)
Johnson, Cameron (North Carolina)
Johnson, Keldon (Kentucky)
Kabengele, Mfiondu (Florida State)
King, Louis (Oregon)
Langford, Romeo (Indiana)
Lawson, Dedric (Kansas)
Lecque, Jalen (Brewster Academy (NH))
Little, Nassir (North Carolina)
Matthews, Charles (Michigan)
McDaniels, Jalen (San Diego State)
Morant, Ja (Murray State)
Norvell Jr., Zach (Gonzaga)
Nowell, Jaylen (Washington)
Nwora, Jordan (Louisville)
Okeke, Chuma (Auburn)
Okpala, KZ (Stanford)
Oni, Miye (Yale)
Paschall, Eric (Villanova)
Ponds, Shamorie (St. John’s)
Poole, Jordan (Michigan)
Porter Jr., Kevin (USC)
Porter, Jontay (Missouri)
Queta, Neemias (Utah State)
Reddish, Cam (Duke)
Reid, Naz (LSU)
Roby, Isaiah (Nebraska)
Samanic, Luka (Olimpija (Slovenia))
Schofield, Admiral (Tennessee)
Shittu, Simisola (Vanderbilt)
Tillie, Killian (Gonzaga)
Washington Jr., PJ (Kentucky)
Waters, Tremont (LSU)
Weatherspoon, Quinndary (Mississippi State)
White, Coby (North Carolina)
Wilkes, Kris (UCLA)
Williams, Grant (Tennessee)
Williamson, Zion (Duke)
Windler, Dylan (Belmont)
Good luck, guys.
One of the three remaining prospects Kentucky is pursuing from the 2019 recruiting class has finalized the timeline for his decision.
Johnny Juzang, the small forward out of California, will make his announcement this coming Friday, May 10. He has a final four of Kentucky, Virginia, Oregon and Kansas.
Juzang is new to the 2019 class after reclassifying from 2020 last month. He is considered a four-star prospect ranked 32nd in the country in the 247 Sports Composite Rankings.
The last eight picks in his Crystal Ball are for Kentucky, including predictions from trusted sources Evan Daniels and Jerry Meyer.
It sounds like Kentucky may add a fifth freshmen to the incoming class.
When it comes to college basketball recruiting (and slim fit three-piece suits), no one on the planet knows more than Evan Daniels. He is the one to trust in the recruiting game, which is why you will be very thrilled to know he logged a pick for Kentucky in Jaden McDaniels’ Crystal Ball predictions early this morning.
Daniels called it a gut feeling about the five-star power forward, who has been extremely quiet and reserved throughout the whole process.
“We are coming down the stretch in Jaden McDaniels’ recruitment,” Daniels explained to KSR. “Kentucky and Washington have been getting a lot of play lately, but my gut says Kentucky is in the best position to land him.”
The timetable for the decision is uncertain, much like everything else in McDaniels’ recruitment.
By Drew Franklin on ©May 07th, 2019 @ 2:25pm
Rivals.com released its final basketball rankings for the Class of 2019 and each of the four members in Kentucky’s signing class saw a drop in their place on the list.
Tyrese Maxey, Kentucky’s only top 10 player, fell one place to No. 10 in the final update. Maxey dropped to the third-ranked point guard in the class, behind only Cole Anthony of North Carolina and the undecided RJ Hampton. Hampton, a Kentucky target and a friend of Maxey, reclassified last week and debuted ahead of Maxey in the rankings.
The newest signee in UK’s class, Kahlil Whitney, fell out of the top 10 in the final update. Still the top-ranked small forward among his peers, Whitney slid six places from No. 8 to No. 14.
Keion Brooks, UK’s only other five-star prospect, is still the fifth-ranked small forward in 2019; however, he moved down one spot to No. 28 in the Rivals150’s last class ranking.
Then there is Dontaie Allen, the in-state star from nearby Pendleton County, a four-star talent in the Rivals150. Allen saw the biggest decline of the Wildcats, falling from No. 55 to No. 67 in the class. Allen missed most of his senior season with a torn ACL he suffered back in December, so his drop in the class rankings was expected due to his time away from basketball.
Other notable prospects include current targets RJ Hampton, the sixth-ranked player in the class; Jaden McDaniels, the seventh-ranked player and No. 1 power forward; and small forward Johnny Juzang at No. 34.
Check out the before and after of the top 10 players in the final Rivals150:
|1. Vernon Carey||Duke||1. James Wiseman||Memphis|
|2. Anthony Edwards||Georgia||2. Isaiah Stewart||Washington|
|3. James Wiseman||Memphis||3. Anthony Edwards||Georgia|
|4. Cole Anthony||North Carolina||4. Cole Anthony||North Carolina|
|5. Isaiah Stewart||Washington||5. Vernon Carey||Duke|
|6. Jaden McDaniels||Undecided||6. R.J. Hampton||Undecided|
|7. Matthew Hurt||Duke||7. Jaden McDaniels||Undecided|
|8. Kahlil Whitney||Kentucky||8. Scottie Lewis||Florida|
|9. Tyrese Maxey||Kentucky||9. Matthew Hurt||Duke|
|10. Jeremiah Robinson-Earl||Villanova||10. Tyrese Maxey||Kentucky|
Lexington Catholic’s own Beau Allen has finally made it official and will be continuing his football career at the University of Kentucky. Allen will look to have the same amount of success as former Knights Winston Guy and David Bouvier both did wearing the Kentucky blue and white.
After multiple recruiting classes where UK swung and miss on the top quarterback on their board, the Wildcats nabbed their man for the class of 2020. With the pledge, UK has their second highest rated high school quarterback out of high school in the Mark Stoops era.
Last year, Beau Allen was in charge of an offense that put up 40.8 points per game and made it to the second round of the 3A KHSAA football playoffs. For the year, Allen completed 65.3 percent of his passes, averaged 10.4 yards per attempt, was responsible for 50 touchdowns (42 passing, 8 rushing), and owned an efficient 2.5% interception rate. You add in 740 rushing yards and Allen is a flat out Kentucky high school superstar. UK is getting a quarterback with a lot of tools.
When watching the tape, the first thing that stands out are the throws that the pocket quarterback can make vertically down the field. While it’s hard to tell if he has the velocity to make consistent small window throws in the intermediate areas, it’s clear that Allen has the arm talent to go deep and he delivers the ball with accuracy. He consistently throws his receivers open on vertical routes and seems to have very good pocket mechanics. Here he climbs the pocket to avoid the outside rush and to create a great throwing lane for the big play touchdown. UK’s quarterbacks in the last decade have had trouble with pocket mobility. It seems clear that Allen has that in high school.
It’s easy to understand why Air Raid schools such as Washington State and West Virginia were interested in the young quarterback. Allen is at his best when he takes a short drop and gets the ball out quickly. When called for, he can sling it like a shortstop in baseball and delivers it with accuracy. One of Allen’s biggest strengths is his accuracy and that usually translates very well to college ball.
Since Eddie Gran took over the Kentucky offense in 2016, the QB run game has become an important element. Stephen Johnson was just mobile enough to keep defenses honest on zone read looks while Terry Wilson has proven to have big play ability as a runner. Allen won’t provide what Wilson brings to the table, but he is capable to do what Johnson did. He’ll never be a big time runner, but he can scramble for first downs and occasionally keep the rock on designed quarterback runs.
This was a very solid recruiting win for Mark Stoops and his staff. Some of the top offensive minds in college football (David Cutcliffe, Mike Leach) were very interested in Beau Allen and recruited him very hard. That’s a good sign and his tape shows a confident, accurate quarterback who can push the ball vertically down the field in addition to being an above average athlete for the position.
The roster situation couldn’t be better for an incoming freshman quarterback in 2020. Terry Wilson will be entering his senior season which will allow Allen use a year of development during his redshirt season. After that, he will seemingly be competing with three inexperienced quarterbacks in Amani Gilmore, Nik Scalzo, and Walker Wood. As of right now, Allen will be the favorite to open the 2021 season as the program’s QB1.
By Nick Roush on ©May 06th, 2019 @ 3:33pm
Kentucky’s recruiting momentum has reached a crescendo. Four-star quarterback Beau Allen has committed to Kentucky.
The Lexington native and son of former Wildcat, Bill Allen, Beau chose to become Mark Stoops’ quarterback of the future over the opportunity to play in Mike Leach and Neal Brown’s air raid systems. Along with Washington State and West Virginia, he had a dozen scholarship offers from the likes of Georgia, Michigan and Michigan State. Allen is the No. 15 ranked pro-style quarterback in America according to Rivals.
Allen will see a few familiar faces at UK. His former Lexington Catholic head coach, Mark Perry, joined the coaching staff as an offensive quality control assistant this spring.
The rising star already has a few friends prepared to play at UK. Four-star offensive tackle John Young and three-star cornerback Andru Phillips committed to UK shortly after the trio officially visited campus last weekend, not too long after they posed for this picture at Kroger Field following the Blue/White Game.
Along with four-star defensive tackle Lamar Goods, UK now has four commitments in the 2020 recruiting class. Stoops and Vince Marrow have built a solid foundation for a strong finish.