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5 Impressions following the “all-star” season

Each year when the NCAA tournament dust settles, we are treated to a small preview of next year’s incoming players. Between the McDonald’s All-American game, the Jordan Brand Classic, the Derby Festival Classic and the Nike Hoop Summit, more than a handful of John Calipari’s latest batch of recruits are on display to remind us why we should feel excited about the upcoming season. In a lot of ways, the brief “all-star season” is the last chance we have to formulate opinions and soak in a little basketball before a long, dry summer without much entertainment until the players appear on campus.

As usual, Kentucky fans had a number of opportunities to catch a glimpse of the 2013 Kentucky class. Following the last few weeks of all-star games, media appearances and interviews, here are 5 impressions about the 2013 Kentucky recruiting class:


1) Julius Randle is going to be a star

No one came out smelling more like a rose following the all-star circuit than Julius Randle. Although Andrew Wiggins still leads the way for the 2013 class, Randle is not very far behind at all. Randle seemed to close the gap in perception about who the best player is over the course of the last few weeks. Not only were Randle’s numbers impressive, but just watching him operate on the court displayed just how dominant of a force he can be for Kentucky next season. Julius Randle is everything we hoped Alex Poythress could be when at his best…and then some.

2) Andrew Harrison will bring Cal’s string of dominating point guards back to Kentucky

I think it’s safe to say that by the time it’s all said and done, Andrew Harrison will become one of the great point guards to play under John Calipari. Harrison showed his playmaking ability and the ability to make his teammates better throughout the entire all-star game stretch. Harrison can distribute but he can also put up points himself. Harrison not only looks the part, but he also speaks as if he is prepared to be a leader on this Kentucky team. Actions speak louder than words, but so far, Harrison is saying all of the right things.

3) Don’t sleep on Dakari Johnson

It’s hard to consider the top center in the country as a bit of a project, but that’s the impression many had of Dakari Johnson a few months ago. Many people projected that Johnson would play sparingly behind some of the other big men on the Wildcat roster. While that still may wind up being true, Johnson showed that his offensive game has already improved greatly and that if he is in fact the 6th, 7th or 8th man off the bench– Kentucky will be really, really good. 

4) This incoming class does not lack confidence or personality

In all of the media madness surrounding the all-star events, the guys coming to Kentucky did not shy away from the talk about how special of a team they can potentially be– and the high expectations being set out for them next season. From top to bottom, the guys all responded with confidence about themselves and what they could achieve next season. As a group, they also displayed plenty of personality and appear to have grown very close throughout the entire all-star process.

5) Next year is going to be fun 

With Andrew Wiggins or without Andrew Wiggins… this class is loaded. We already knew that about them, and some of the members of the class even exceeded the already high expectations placed on them up until this point. With this class and the veteran guys returning– next year will be fun. Sharpie. *Seth Davis voice*

Article written by Ally Tucker

I once successfully requested "The Wobble" to be played 6 times at one wedding.

18 Comments for 5 Impressions following the “all-star” season

    9:36 pm April 21, 2013 Permalink


    9:37 pm April 21, 2013 Permalink

    who thinks Alex Poythress is a starter next season?

  3. uuhhhhhhh
    9:38 pm April 21, 2013 Permalink

    Ally, I’m pretty sure no one thought Poythress was going to be as good as they think Randle will be going into freshman year

  4. uuhhhhhhh
    9:39 pm April 21, 2013 Permalink

    not me

  5. TT's Fake Boobs
    9:58 pm April 21, 2013 Permalink

    Can I sleep on Dakari Johnson if he wants me to?

  6. yeah
    10:01 pm April 21, 2013 Permalink

    next year should be very exciting.. #2 I don’t think he will start at first but once randle makes him get agressive I could see him start at sf and dominating

  7. Duke Sucks
    10:04 pm April 21, 2013 Permalink

    Cals has said Alex was playing out of position last year, so Randle should ease the pressure off of Alex next year. Maybe we will see Alex more at the 3. If we have Johnson, Randle, and Poythress in the game at the same time it will be Beast mode!
    Couldn’t agree more with Johnson. He with Young will be fan favorites. He is going to be Nazr 2.0.

    10:05 pm April 21, 2013 Permalink

    This is all well and good, but regarding point #4 — let us remind you of Archie’s wink in ESPN All Access. The 2013 team didn’t lack any confidence either. Lots of personality before the start of the season, too.

  9. Wildcatsteeler
    10:05 pm April 21, 2013 Permalink

    I’m doubting Wiggins will come to UK. We have 6 forwards. And Randle is going to get at least 30 minutes at one of those forward spots. There just isn’t enough minutes to go around at the 3 and 4. He’d be foolish to go to FSU. So I hate to say it but I’m thinking it will UNC.

  10. Will
    10:20 pm April 21, 2013 Permalink

    Forget wiggins go check out this kid seventh woods.

  11. ricin
    10:56 pm April 21, 2013 Permalink

    Hey everybody, just a reminder. DON’T CLICK ON LINKS IN COMMENTS – links to you tube look like “*****etc” “” is not youtube!

  12. [email protected]
    11:11 pm April 21, 2013 Permalink

    Anyone that thinks that Dakari Johnson can’t play doesn’t know basketball! He is no project, he is the # 1 Center in 2013 and a McDonald’s All America plus he is Calipari’s first true center with a jump shot something that Willie doesn’t have!

  13. [email protected]
    11:13 pm April 21, 2013 Permalink

    I believe Wiggins will be at UK and he will get 30 minutes at UK or anywhere he goes!

  14. TurdFerg
    11:55 pm April 21, 2013 Permalink

    Ol’ Mister Ricin Letters in #11 has PTSD from being “Rick Rolled” one too many times… and his IQ is below 70, so there’s that.

  15. Mack
    12:49 am April 22, 2013 Permalink

    I can’t see anyone avg. 30 minutes next year unless it is the PG.

  16. chipanzy
    3:16 am April 22, 2013 Permalink

    You say don;t sleep on Dakari Johnson, but you say he will be the 6th, 7th, or 8th man off the bench. That means he would be the 11th, 12th, or 13th player that Cal would put in the game. I hope he’s better than that.

  17. Teachable Mo'
    8:54 am April 22, 2013 Permalink

    The expression “sleep on” is terrible. It sounds like the speaker thinks Mel Kiper is a deep thinker rather than a doofus with bad hair. And reading the comments shows that many other readers here agree with me. Listen to us. Use something else. Don’t succumb to Clark Kellogg Disease.

    Johnson’s offensive game will get him plenty of playing time.

  18. bsettle
    10:39 am April 22, 2013 Permalink

    Is it just me or does it look like D. Johnson has like a 2″ vertical? I mean, it looks like he can barely leave the floor….not that he HAS to, but it just surprises me every time he “jumps”!