Take a moment to picture this big guy and Towns dominating the post
–Calipari has some serious work this weekend with three big recruits. Jahlil Okafor, the indisputable number 1 center in the 2014 will be visiting this weekend. His visit notably comes separate from Tyus Jones, his package deal partner. This could indicate two very different paths for Calipari’s recruitment of Okafor. Without Jones, this visit could push some to speculate that Kentucky is the only destination that could pull apart the package deal of Jones and Okafor if one of the members of the package likes Kentucky too much to pass up in the interest of teaming up. The negative point of view on this visit is that the separate visit dates mean that the Kentucky visit is simply a formality and a visit that both players wanted for the experience of it. Its no secret that official visits to Kentucky are a once in a lifetime opportunity that not many players would pass up regardless of how much they are considering Kentucky.
–Tyler Ulis will also be in Lexington for the Alumni Game. Ulis is currently on his visit to Michigan State and visited Iowa last week. This is notably Ulis’ last official visit since he trimmed USC off of his list, which means a commitment could be coming very soon. Rumors in the Twitterverse are that Ulis may commit to UK on his visit. Buy into those rumors at your own risk, but it is safe to assume that Ulis will make a decision in the near future on where he will be playing collegiately. Ulis presence at UK on the same weekend as Okafor can only help UK since Okafor has had high praises for Ulis’ talent.
–Joining Ulis and Okafor this weekend is Devin Booker, the sharpshooter out of Mississippi. Booker and Ulis are keen on the option of playing together in college. The ability for Booker and Ulis to be on campus at the same time is a big boost for Calipari’s hopes of landing a very formidable backcourt for next season.
–The University of Louisville picked up a commit today, and the Kentucky staff is likely pretty happy with it. Pitino and the Cards received a verbal commitment from Jaylen Johnson (#12 PF in 24/7 Sports Composite) today. Why does this help Kentucky? Louisville is considered the main contender with Kentucky for the services of Arsenal Tech’s Trey Lyles. Kentucky has been the odds on favorite for Lyles since his decommitment from Indiana, but Louisville did make a strong push for Lyles. With Johnson already in the fold for Ricky P, it seems unlikely that Lyles would favor Louisville over UK at this point.
–In regards to what Kentucky will be showcasing this weekend, one could present the argument that the Alumni Game may be a better recruiting pitch than Big Blue Madness. All three of these players will see how successful Calipari is at sending players to their NBA dreams in person. A game filled with players that were locks like John Wall to developed players like Darius Miller and Josh Harrelson. For Jahlil Okafor, a player whose twitter handle used to be “@JahProBound”, it’s fair to say that producing NBA talent is a top priority for his college choice.
Be sure to check back early next week for recruit reactions to the Alumni Game and the entire Kentucky visit.