Here is why making predictions in recruiting is a fool’s game. One week ago, EVERYONE believed that Kentucky and Florida were the top two choices for Anthony Bennett. All the national experts, local “insiders” and random message board legends thought the two SEC schools would battle it out for the services of the best player left in America. Now it is Sunday, and it looks as if Bennett will be headed to the West Coast. Florida officially dropped out earlier this week and after conversations I had at the Derby yesterday, it seems as if Kentucky is all but out as well. On Friday, Dave Telep first reported that Kentucky was third for Bennett and after conversations I had on Saturday, I am told that the likelihood of Bennett ending up at UK is “equivalent to a Hail Mary at the end of the Super Bowl.” The reasons for this are two-fold. One, there are some academic issues in place that make it unlikely Bennett will know about his eligibility until right before the start of the Fall Semester. A person familiar with Bennett’s situation told me that it was “probable” that in the end Bennett gets eligible, but it was by no means sure and that both UK and Florida have to assume as if he will not. Plus, there have been other “character related” concerns that caused both schools to pull back and have led to UNLV becoming the solid leader at this time. The combination of grades and these other issues has made the SEC seem like an unlikely destination for the stud big man.
So where does UK go from here? My guess it that the announcement of Amile Jefferson’s latest postponement was in part due to the Bennett change. UK has been behind throughout Jefferson’s recruitment but his decision to not pick a school while UK floundered, suggests that he is very interested. I also believe that UK is VERY INTERESTED in Julius Mays, the talented Shooting Guard from Wright State. He was top 25 in the country in three-point percentage last year and UK has expressed a great deal of interest in him. He may even visit campus this week.
Now all of this could of course change. A week ago we thought we knew, but we didn’t know. That should be the mantra of recruiting news. But for now, the Bennett dreams seem unlikely to come to fruition.