The Kentucky basketball roster has never been more fluid. Since John Calipari began recruiting the nation’s best, more players are leaving early than ever before. Instead of sending off three seniors and maybe a junior each year, there seems to be a mass exodus after each season.
With the roster finalized after today’s announcements from Isaiah Briscoe and Marcus Lee, we can now compare the player turnover to previous seasons. To put it plainly, it was a pretty average offseason.
A few other stats to consider:
- 1,326: The amount of points scored by Jamal Murray and Tyler Ulis, the most by any tandem in the Calipari era.
- 720: Jamal Murray’s freshman single-season scoring record is also the most points a Calipari player has scored in one year.
- 573: Combined points between Isaiah Briscoe and Derek Willis in 2016, the top two returning scorers. Tyler Ulis had 606 by himself.
- 5: Transfers since 2010. Stacey Poole, Ryan Harrow, Kyle Wiltjer, Charles Matthews and Marcus Lee.
- 19: First round draft picks since 2010.
It’s hard to develop a substantial trend, but if there is one it’s “every other year.” A mass exodus, followed by subpar season where only a few leave, then another mass exodus after a big season.
The outliers are the years with multiple transfers, 2013 and 2016. Just like 2013, there’s another stellar recruiting class to replace the pieces to the puzzle. The difference: fans aren’t shouting 40-0 from the ceilings entering the 2016-17 season.
Take away from it what you will, just don’t leave with lofty expectations. In Cal’s two best years — the National Championship season and the undefeated regular season — they returned more than half of their scoring from the previous year. The scoring next season will have to come from Briscoe, Willis and a handful of newcomers.