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Five Immediate Thoughts After The Bamba News


Mohamed Bamba’s recruitment is over and it didn’t go in Kentucky’s favor. Here are five quick thoughts on his decision to pick Texas as we get back on our feet after the disappoint blow to BBN’s recruiting momentum…


1. Hey, at least he didn’t go to Duke.

If you’re going to lose a recruitment, you always want to lose to a school that’s not a threat. Texas will be a good team next season, but nowhere near as good as if Duke, our arch nemesis, had added Bamba to its roster.

2. He makes a good point about Jarrett Allen.

Bamba wrote:

I can’t say enough about the strides my friend Jarrett Allen made this past year. I saw his footwork improve. I saw the spots they put him in – where he was shooting, passing and stretching the paint like a modern five. Most importantly, I saw his confidence grow throughout the season as he distinguished himself as a possible lottery pick. I’m thankful for the blueprint he laid down and I hope to follow in his footsteps.

Now let’s look at Bam Adebayo and Sacha Killeya-Jones, two other five-star big men from Allen’s class who attended Kentucky. Bam went from projected lottery pick to fringe first-rounder after a year that didn’t live up to expectations; Killeya-Jones didn’t play at all. Calipari’s long-term record with bigs is good, but those are three guys Bamba has known most of his basketball life and probably kept close tabs on last season when Allen proved to make the most strides in one year. One point to Texas.

3. It’s really not a big deal for Kentucky next year.

As nice as it would’ve been to add a game-changer like Bamba, Kentucky is already pretty loaded in the paint, probably too loaded. A month ago you would’ve ranked Bamba third behind Kevin Knox and Hamidou Diallo based on need; well, you got Knox and Diallo is still TBD.

However, no Bamba puts pressure on Nick Richards and a sophomore Killeya-Jones to perform, but it’s not like Kentucky won’t have a big man because it didn’t get Bamba.

He would’ve been a great addition because he is special. It’s not the end of the world.

4. He is really, really, really smart and I’m a huge fan.

Unlike most (all) player contributions to The Players’ Tribune, I really believe Bamba wrote his own. Watch one interview with him and you know he’s a very special young man outside of his basketball talents. He clearly put a lot of thought into this decision and believes he is doing what’s best for his family, which is all that really matters in the end. How can you not love that he wants to, in his words, “build a long, successful career that will ensure that my father won’t have to drive a cab 70-plus hours a week, including nights and weekends”?  Consider me a big fan of Mo Bamba for life.

5. I still like my team.

When the ball tips next fall, give me the University of Kentucky over anyone.

They’re at the table waiting to eat. mcdaag-uk

Article written by Drew Franklin

I can recite every line from Forrest Gump, blindfolded. Follow me on Twitter: @DrewFranklinKSR

76 Comments for Five Immediate Thoughts After The Bamba News

  1. 8xchamp
    3:38 pm May 18, 2017 Permalink

    Also probably scared of no promised minutes in a loaded front court.

  2. Marcus Areolas
    4:22 pm May 18, 2017 Permalink

    Can’t get em all! We should have enough to get jobbed by the refs again next year.

  3. UKfanman01
    4:45 pm May 18, 2017 Permalink

    So I’ll start off by saying congrats on a great article. That is one knock I’ve had on Cal the last couple of years. He doesn’t use the 4 correctly. Like I told people at work when there was a chance Bam was coming back. Bam needed to go. Cal was only going to hurt him. NBA wants him to shoot 3’s, play a little inside, and grab rebounds. Cal still plays traditional ball. Skal is another prime example. Even Cal said he screwed that kid up, and even after he said that he still didn’t utilize him like he should’ve been.
    I guess Bamba is more worried about personal development than wins next season, which is a shame. Texas seemed to be the worse of the 4. I’d personally rather have seen Mizzou. At least they’re rebuilding with a solid coach and have the number 1 player next year. Would’ve been a neat team to watch. With all of that said I hope the two teams meet next year

  4. jim tom
    5:41 pm May 18, 2017 Permalink


  5. Eazy
    6:02 pm May 18, 2017 Permalink

    Good get for Texas. I’ll take Vanderbilt and Washington who are both Texas guys who chose us over the Horns. Same with the Harrison’s, Randle, and Fox. It’s quite telling that we out recruit them in their own backyard every year.