In case you haven’t heard, Kentucky is the heavy favorite for the No. 1 prospect in the class of 2019, James Wiseman. And there have been rumors spreading for months that he could be reclassifying and joining UK’s class of 2018 for a potential superteam next season.
In early December, Wiseman told reporters at the Marshall County Hoopfest that a move to 2018 “wasn’t an option” and that he didn’t even know where these rumors were coming from.
According to SEC Country’s Kyle Tucker, however, there are still whispers of Wiseman reclassifying to 2018.
He has said he will not. But I continue to hear rumblings that such a move is far from off the table. And as of this moment – two days after UK assistant Tony Barbee was courtside for Wiseman’s game at a holiday tournament in Florida – I’d still give it a 50 percent chance of happening.
And he brings up an extremely valid point. This past offseason, top 2018 recruits Marvin Bagley III and Jontay Porter told reporters constantly that they wouldn’t be reclassifying, even playing through the summer AAU circuit when other 2017 signees were making their way to campus. Within a few weeks of summer AAU championships, they both “surprisingly” made the jump to 2017 and were both deemed eligible to play this season.
Tucker reports if you reclassify to the prior recruiting class, you are ineligible to play in the AAU summer championships, hence why Bagley and Porter kept it a secret for so long. With Wiseman’s Memphis East AAU team being a national powerhouse with a legitimate shot at the EYBL Championship, he could be keeping it quiet so he can help his team win at the Peach Jam next summer before making his way to Lexington.
Considering John Calipari has yet to offer another big man in the class of 2018, even with five-star center Moses Brown essentially begging for an offer from Kentucky, the theory seems plausible.
Here’s just one reason the Kentucky staff and the rest of the top coaches in America are so high on Wiseman:
6’11 junior James Wiseman (@BigTicket_JW with impressive back-to-back possessions at both ends of the floor showcasing why he is the No. 1 prospect in the @espn 60 rankings ft. high school prospects in the Class of 2019#east high school is playing #webstergrove live on #espn2 pic.twitter.com/9pGbS7FGT7
– DraftExpressContent (@DXContent) December 15, 2017
And a few more reasons:
Having Wiseman in the class of 2018 would make for a monster recruiting class, but as long as he’s here sometime in the next two years, I think the Big Blue Nation will be happy.