This kind of falls into the ‘It goes without saying’ department, but since someone decided to say it we’ll bring it to you. Chris Dortch of the official NBA website set out to identify some of the top schools for sending players to the league and, of course, Kentucky figured heavily in the discussion. Texas and Duke were the other programs named as the top NBA feeders, although when you put the recent rush of Kentucky draftees next to those of anyone else, there isn’t much of a comparison. Here’s some of the breakdown:
Wildcat opponents, especially in the Southeastern Conference, had better get used to the embarrassment of riches that is passing through Lexington these days.
After providing five first-round draft picks — a record for one school — in 2010, the Wildcats were almost as generous in 2011.
Enes Kanter never got to play for Kentucky, but he attended class and practiced with the team all season, so he counts toward the Wildcats’ total of four draftees. Kanter was picked by the Utah Jazz at No. 3 and becomes part of that franchise’s masterful rapid rebuilding program, joining Colorado’s Alec Burks, who’s going to be a star at shooting guard, and 2010 lottery picks Derrick Favors and Gordon Hayward.
Guard Brandon Knight was taken No. 8 by the Detroit Pistons. He has the intelligence and work ethic to become whatever Detroit wants him to become — a scorer, a true point or a combo who can fill in at either spot.
I’ll pause a moment to let you absorb this little nugget: In the last two years, Kentucky has had four players selected in the top 10 of the draft, five in the top 15 and seven in the first round.
It’s staggering. really, and, there is nothing better from a recruiting perspective than having a reputation for preparing guys for the next level. Kentucky is certainly doing that, and apparently even the NBA’s own site is taking notice.