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Kentucky MBB jumps from unranked to No. 6 in ESPN’s 2021 recruiting class rankings

Photo: 247Sports/Collin Kennedy

Photo: 247Sports/Collin Kennedy

Less than two weeks is all it took for John Calipari to lay down the foundation for his 2021 recruiting class and beyond.

Over at ESPN, Jeff Borzello and Adam Finkelstein broke down their top-ranked recruiting classes for the 2021 high school class, moving Kentucky up from unranked to No. 6 thanks to the signings of 2021 prospects Nolan Hickman, Daimion Collins, and Bryce Hopkins. Skyy Clark, who is currently a member of the 2022 class, was meshed into the picture, too.

Hickman, a budding four-star player who some expect will add a fifth-star to his rating in the near future, kicked things off back in August as the first commit of the 2021 class. It would take exactly two more months before Calipari could add to his future roster, but he did so with quick succession. 2022 prospect Skyy Clark chose the ‘Cats on Oct. 22, Hopkins a few days later on Oct. 26, and Collins wrapped things up with a Kentucky decision on Oct. 31.

Here’s what ESPN had to say about Kentucky’s recruiting efforts over the last couple of months:

With three commitments in a 10-day span, John Calipari’s class is starting to take shape. Nolan Hickman, a point guard with emerging upside, got things started in August before the momentum built in October. Bryce Hopkins is a big-bodied combo forward and mismatch scorer who can make contributions offensively from the get-go. Daimion Collins is a big man who fits the Kentucky prototype up front as a rim runner, explosive finisher and shot-blocker with tons of room for future growth. ESPN 60 five-star guard Skyy Clark is also on board but still technically a part of the Class of 2022, although a future reclassification up to 2021 remains a legitimate possibility. Still left on Kentucky’s board are top-25 talents Jaden Hardy and Hunter Sallis.

The work is far from done though, especially if Kentucky wants to finish as a top-three class, something they’ve done in every single season since Calipari took over the program back in 2009. As mentioned by ESPN, five-star guards Jaden Hardy and Hunter Sallis are still available. Our own Jack Pilgrim did a quick breakdown of the 2021 prospects with Kentucky interest who have yet to make a decision, including a couple of reclassification options, which you can check out here.

Article written by Zack Geoghegan

Recruiting reporter for KSR. Follow me on Twitter: @ZGeogheganKSR