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KSR Crystal Ball: Spring Predictions For All Things UK


Now that the basketball season is behind us and spring is upon us, it is time to dust off the crystal ball and look into the near future for UK athletics.

Who will stay? Who will go? Who’s coming? What’s next for football?

All the answers can be found below:


De’Aaron Fox and Malik Monk will hire agents and enter the NBA draft.

Considering they are going to be two of the first 10 names called in the draft, it is a no-brainer that Fox and Monk have each played their last game in a Kentucky uniform. Both are projected as high as fifth on the board, depending which mock draft you prefer.

They gone.

Confidence Level: Couldn’t Be More Confident


Bam Adebayo will also hire an agent and enter the NBA draft.

Adebayo isn’t projected as high as Fox or Monk, but he will also hear his name called in the first round of the draft. currently has him going No. 16 to Miami, while DraftExpress projects him at No. 30 to Utah. Chad Ford over at ESPN ranks him as the 19th-best available prospect.

Confidence Level: Almost A Sure Thing


Isaiah Briscoe is gone as well.

Briscoe waited until the very last minute to decide to return last year, and it’s unlikely he will make that same decision again. He has had two seasons to make his case for the NBA; unfortunately, his game doesn’t translate well to that level, which is why he is not among Ford’s top 100 prospects.

Knowing what I know about Briscoe, I still expect him to make the jump to professional basketball, wherever that may be. He can still play his way onto an NBA roster, but I do not expect to see him on the Kentucky basketball roster in 2017-18.

Confidence Level: Very, Very Confident


Hamidou Diallo will go to the combine.

I fully expect Hamidou Diallo to be starting for John Calipari next season and I cannot wait to see what he can do on the floor as a freshman with six additional months of preparation. But I do think he will test the NBA waters to get a feel for the process so he is better prepared when he does make the jump this time next year.

Any other year and he may go ahead and leave with good feedback; this year, however, there are too many proven guards in the draft for him to go as high as he will next summer.

Confidence Level: Complete Guess


Mohamed Bamba will commit to UK.

If today were decision day for Mo Bamba, I would be shocked if he committed to anywhere but Kentucky. The coaching staff is very confident in their position with the five-star big man and I think they are expecting to add him whenever he does decide.

However, Bamba has said he will take his time in making a final decision, so anything could happen between now and the day he chooses to announce.

Confidence Level: Very Confident (As Of This Moment)


Kevin Knox will not commit to UK.

Knox will announce his decision during his spring break (Apr. 8-16) and I will freely admit I don’t know the first thing about what is going on in his head. But Duke and North Carolina are high on his list so I’ll play the pessimist in predicting how this plays out, although Kentucky is still in the mix.

Confidence Level: Guess/Playing The Odds


Football spring game attendance will be down.

Despite the excitement around the program following the upset of Louisville and the school’s first bowl berth since 2010, don’t expect an increase in fan attendance at this year’s Blue-White game on Friday, April 14.

I have been told ticket distribution has underwhelmed so far (although it will spike as the game gets closer) and my guess is that is due several factors: Keeneland season; Good Friday; the game is televised on the SEC Network; and being a Friday, not everyone can take off work in time to make it to Lexington.

Last year’s attendance was reported at 28,441. This year it could reach that number, but unlikely it exceeds it.

Confidence Level: Please Prove Me Wrong, BBN

Article written by Drew Franklin

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

25 Comments for KSR Crystal Ball: Spring Predictions For All Things UK

  1. Sentient Third Eye
    12:26 pm March 30, 2017 Permalink

    On one hand, it would make sense for Diallo to go to the Combine to gauge himself for next season and pinpoint what he needs to work on, but on the other, Coach Cal’s UK pro day gives his players that same information anyway, so the Combine might just be a waste of his time or, worse, a distraction when he could be building chemistry with his new team.

    • jomani
      12:36 pm March 30, 2017 Permalink

      There’s almost no downside to going if he’s declaring next year anyways. He’ll get to match up with elite talent and learn things he should work on. One week of not hanging out with the guys he recruited to UK isn’t going to ruin chemistry with the team. It’s a win win situation all around

    • ukisgr8
      2:20 pm March 30, 2017 Permalink

      downside is selfish, keeping him away from scouts. lol

  2. Biglaw Dawgin'
    12:51 pm March 30, 2017 Permalink

    I hope Briscoe’s prediction is wrong. He could certainly benefit from 2 more years. His draft stock is zero right now, if he leaves he’ll be bouncing around the D league forever. Or he can stay and work on his shot. Shooting takes time to develop, time that NBA teams aren’t going to give him. If he’s not ready to go in year one or two, they’ll cut him.

    He needs to follow the model of Sindarius Thornwell from South Carolina. Dude was a 12 ppg guy for his first 3 years, now he’s a first rounder. The only thing that changed was his jumper. His minutes didn’t go up his senior year, it was just working on his shooting. Now he’s a 40% 3-point shooter averaging 20+ ppg. That’s the model Briscoe should follow as they are very similar players. Briscoe’s plan was to get to the NBA as soon as possible, but that didn’t work so now he’s gotta change the plan.

    • runningunnin.454
      1:00 pm March 30, 2017 Permalink

      Correct. Thornwell is the perfect example.

    • stoopstroops
      1:47 pm March 30, 2017 Permalink

      I hope he’s (Briscoe) gone, tired of watching him turn the ball over and running people over.

    • Sentient Third Eye
      2:08 pm March 30, 2017 Permalink

      Good thought. Shooting is the one thing that more time in college can improve. He won’t get any taller or faster, but he can learn to shoot better.

  3. tubby b smith
    1:01 pm March 30, 2017 Permalink

    Bam and Briscoe is gone…and will be in the D league by January

  4. BlueDeuce
    1:06 pm March 30, 2017 Permalink

    I’d like to see Bam return as well because he needs to work a lot on his game and with the draft being so deep this year, he will be in the 20s as far as picks go but could go lottery next year. Guaranteed money over “you got waived” money sure looks brighter than league minimum in the D-League. I realize he has the body to play but there is so much more he could work on and get to the guaranteed money slot.

    Briscoe…like the twins or Lamb, not sure he will ever be more than he is by staying longer. But, the Thornwell reference above certainly is a compelling argument. I have nothing I can say over that other than Europe pays pretty good today and his tough play would certainly fit in well there. The NBA is not drafting Briscoe this year for sure so D-League or Europe is his choice if he leaves. He could be a 20ppg guy though if he returned and who knows, maybe he can transform his shot to become a Sindarius Thornwell.

    I was under the impression Bam needed to go for family reasons and Briscoe didn’t like college…so maybe that is the main reasons the jump more so than how their game translates to the next level.

  5. stoopstroops
    1:45 pm March 30, 2017 Permalink

    Bamba is waiting to see if bam does return.
    Attendance will be down at the spring game mainly because it’s a Friday.
    I’ve been every year stoops has been here but won’t be able to make it on a Friday.

  6. whack0001
    1:50 pm March 30, 2017 Permalink

    Briscoe is not a good enough basketball player to play in the NBA. No need to sugar coat it

  7. The Professor
    2:11 pm March 30, 2017 Permalink

    You must have elite athleticism or a specific outstanding skill to play in the NBA. Briscoe lacks both. A college degree would likely prove more beneficial in the long run. I would be shocked if any pro talent evaluators are advising him to turn pro.

  8. ukisgr8
    2:18 pm March 30, 2017 Permalink

    love Brad Calipari but if what you say is true about Knox, Briscoe, and chances of losing Diallo, Brad may be starting or playing a significant role. Hope you are wrong on Knox. Very bad if true

    • ThankfulCat
      2:59 pm March 30, 2017 Permalink


      Ellen, is that you?

      There are at least 6 recruits coming in and two more possible and two guys staying. Brad has no chance of playing next year other than mop up time

    • za
      3:07 pm March 30, 2017 Permalink

      That escalated quickly

    • ukisgr8
      3:10 pm March 30, 2017 Permalink

      one, you are counting Diallo and Briscoe as staying. Two, you are counting on Green, Shai, and Vanderbilt as playing 40 minutes every game if ONE doesn’t happen. Am I missing someone else besides Briscoe and Diallo as wing players for next year?

    • Biglaw Dawgin'
      3:38 pm March 30, 2017 Permalink

      He won’t play “significant” minutes, but he could conceivably play 5-10 minutes a game if everything falls into place. There are 120 total minutes per game for the 3 guard spots (40×3). Our guards will be at least be: Diallo, Green, Alexander, and Vanderbilt. That’s 30 min a game for each of those dudes, which is right at the top limit of what Cal likes to give his best starters. If it’s only those 4 as our guards, I could see Brad playing 5-10 minutes a game to give breathers here and there. Not significant, but not garbage minutes. Still, the chances are slim as I can bet one of the following three will happen despite what our clairvoyant says: 1) Briscoe will come back, 2) Knox signs, or 3) Cal nabs a last-minute addition.

    • BEnglish017
      6:46 pm March 30, 2017 Permalink

      Shai, Quade plus Diallo coming back….Brad will see the same amount of PT as he did last year or less assuming we aren’t blowing people out early. Plus Cal will add 1 or 2 more. I’d love to have Hawkins back for 1 more year bc I think he’d be a great fit.

  9. RealCatsFan
    2:24 pm March 30, 2017 Permalink

    Hey, some kids are just not cut out for college – scholastically speaking. Perhaps Briscoe falls into this camp. This ain’t UNC – the kids actually have to go to class. 🙂

  10. Underdog
    2:58 pm March 30, 2017 Permalink

    After seeing Mark Smith’s tape, I want that guy. He got jipped in being rated just 4 stars. The guy is a legit top 20 pick overall. Top 2 combo guard.

    Reminds me completely of Keith Bogans, who stayed 4 years (was it?).

    Let’s get Bamba and Smith and then let’s suit ’em up!

    Oh, and Bam is ready right now for the NBA. He WILL make a team and WILL contribute next year in the NBA. Don’t be silly. Briscoe will probably like to play overseas and make a few hundred thousand dollars a year. Who wouldn’t?

    • J-Dub421
      3:34 pm March 30, 2017 Permalink

      Make that a million + for Briscoe and you’d be right. Players can make good money playing overseas. Darius Miller makes 1.5 million per season and Jorts makes 2 million per season. Other players have similar contracts. That is not chump change.

  11. Angelo
    3:07 pm March 30, 2017 Permalink

    Bamba, Bamba, Bamba!!!

  12. 3 fan
    4:14 pm March 30, 2017 Permalink

    Drew I’d like to hear your predictions on the following:
    Does SKJ transfer?
    Will Humphries stay?
    Will Tai leave?

    Im thinking “YES” to all