Despite the absence of high-profile grassroots events this summer, 2021 five-star guard Kennedy Chandler’s recruitment is starting to heat up in a major way.
After cutting his list down to five in April – Duke, Kentucky, Memphis, North Carolina and Tennessee remain as finalists – momentum has shifted almost entirely in Tennessee’s favor, with the Volunteers picking up seven consecutive picks on his Crystal Ball at 247Sports, along with an additional seven FutureCasts over at Rivals. 12 of those predictions have come in the last week alone.
As buzz continues to pick up in Tennessee’s favor, are we nearing a decision? And more importantly, can John Calipari and the Kentucky coaching staff make up ground prior to a commitment?
In a recent interview with Travis Branham of 247Sports, the five-star guard said he would like to take visits to each of the finalists on his list prior to jumping on a commitment.
“[My recruitment’s] been going good,” he said. “It’s been kind of hard because I really want to go visit schools and coaches but I can’t, it’s a little difficult. … I still want to see all of the schools before I make my decision.”
When asked about the individual schools on his final list, Chandler noted that he’s a fan of Kentucky’s style of play and has a great relationship with the coaching staff.
“I got a good relationship with Coach Cal and coach [Tony] Barbee,” Chandler said. “They really think I’m a good player and would fit their program with the way they let their guards get up and down.”
As for the perceived favorite, Tennessee, the 6-foot-1 guard out of Memphis says the Volunteers have been recruiting him for a long time, adding that he has a solid relationship with UT assistant coach Kim English.
“I got a good relationship with them and coach [Kim] English,” the five-star guard told 247Sports. “Ever since they offered me they have been recruiting me really hard and they have some underrated players that go there and that’s a school that I’m interested in.”
In a separate recruiting update by Corey Evans of Rivals.com, the basketball insider added that Chandler is on “commitment watch,” confirming that the Volunteers are seen as the leader going into the home stretch of his recruitment.
“We are on commitment watch with Kennedy Chandler,” Evans noted. “Could a decision come this week? It is a possibility but, either way, an announcement doesn’t appear to be too far away. Tennessee is the team to beat, but maybe Kentucky or Memphis will make one last ditch effort.”
Chandler is considered the No. 10 overall prospect and No. 1 point guard in the 2021 247Sports Composite Rankings.