At 8 p.m. tonight, D.J. Jeffries will announce his college decision. The five-star small forward from Olive Branch, Mississippi is down to Kentucky, Alabama, and Mississippi State and the Cats are overwhelming favorite. Here’s what you need to know ahead of his announcement.
|Small Forward||6-7 | 200 lbs.||Olive Branch, MS||Olive Branch/Team Penny|
|ESPN: 17 | 4 SF||Top 247: 27 | 8 SF||Rivals: 47||247 Sports Composite: 26 | 8 SF|
He’s another long, athletic wing
John Calipari loves long, athletic forwards he can use in multiple positions, and Jeffries fits that description. At 6’7″, 200 lbs., he’s big enough to take it inside but has a good jump shot. In the past year or so, he’s shed his baby fat, which has made him even more explosive.
Calipari’s visited him twice in the last month
How badly does Cal want Jeffries? He’s been to see him twice in the past month, most recently last Tuesday in the Mississippi Class 5A Semifinals. Jeffries finished with 20 points, 5 rebounds and 5 blocks in Olive Branch’s win, which advanced them to the finals.
“Cal, man, he’s been showing major interest,” DJ’s father Corey said on the Jason & John Show this morning. “Major interest. And Tony Barbee is constantly in contact with us and when Cal coached at Memphis, DJ was a big fan. He was a big fan of Cal then and he’s still a fan of Cal now. That’s the thing about Kentucky.”
He led his team to a state championship
DJ Jeffries is a state champion pic.twitter.com/9NHH85ts3I
— Brody Miller (@BrodyMillerCL) March 10, 2018
On Friday night, Jeffries led Olive Branch to the 5A state title with another 20-point, 5-rebound performance.
He actually wanted to commit after the title game
DJ’s father said his son actually wanted to announced his decision right after the game, but they advised him to wait. His dad also told the Clarion-Ledger that DJ has known for a “few months” where he’ll be going.
He’s EYBL teammates with James Wiseman
Another reason Calipari really wants Jeffries? He’s friends and EYBL teammates with James Wiseman, Kentucky’s top target in the 2019 class. The two play for Team Penny, coached by Penny Hardaway, which brings me to my next point…
He doesn’t want to wait around to see what happens at Memphis
Will Memphis fire Tubby Smith in favor of Penny Hardaway? Probably, but the Jeffries family doesn’t feel like waiting around to find out. If you missed it earlier, Jeffries’ dad doesn’t seem to be a big fan of Tubby, recalling an awkward encounter in a hotel elevator.
“We took a long look at Memphis. We can’t go on ‘ifs.’ It’s kinda crazy, because if [Penny] takes the job, then it would be something to take a long look at.”
Kentucky has 100% of the predictions in his Crystal Ball
Including that of Evan Daniels, who has a 96.5% accuracy rating.
Come on down, DJ.