Several high-profile recruits will be in Rupp Arena tonight for Big Blue Madness, none more famous than Zion Williamson, arguably the most sensational high school recruit since John Wall. Here’s a rundown of the guest list as we know it.
|Forward||6-7 | 230 lbs.||Spartanburg, SC||Spartanburg/SC Supreme|
|ESPN: 2 | 1 PF||Top 247: 1 | 1 PF||Rivals: 2||Scout: 3 | 2 SF|
Williamson is in Lexington with a UK cookie cake to prove it. Immanuel Quickley wasn’t able to make the trip to join his friend on the visit, but Williamson won’t be hurting for attention. After a quiet spell, buzz for Kentucky has picked up in recent weeks. With Drake (who owns Williamson’s high school jersey) expected to be in the house tonight, I expect a lot of winking and nodding in Zion’s direction.
|Center||7-2 | 220 lbs.||Santa Ana, CA||Mater Dei/Cal Supreme|
|ESPN: 4 | 1 C||Top 247: 4 | 1 C||Rivals: 3||Scout: 2 | 1 C|
Seemingly over his snub from John Calipari’s U19 National Team, Bol will take his official visit this weekend. He’s down to Kentucky and Oregon with a decision expected soon.
|Point Guard||6-2 | 170 lbs.||Brentwood, TN||Brentwood Academy/Bradley Beal Elite|
|ESPN: 11 | 2 PG||Top 247: 15 | 4 PG||Rivals: 15||Scout: 7 | 2 PG|
Vanderbilt and Indiana are the favorites for the Nashville native, who is also considering UCLA, but if he likes Kentucky enough to share the backcourt with Immanuel Quickley and whoever comes back next season, Calipari’s shown he’s just fine taking more guards than needed. Between Garland, Quentin Grimes, and Keldon Johnson, UK will take another guard in 2018. My money’s on Johnson.
|Power Forward||6-11 | 216 lbs.||Memphis, TN||East High/Team Penny|
|ESPN: 1 | 1 PF||Top 247: 4 | 2 PF||Rivals: 2||Scout: 2 | 2 PF|
Wiseman was the first 2019 player to get an offer from Kentucky and has been compared to Anthony Davis. That’s all I need to hear.
D.J. Jeffries âï¸âï¸âï¸âï¸âï¸
|Small Forward||6-7 | 185 lbs.||Olive Branch, MS||Olive Branch/Team Penny|
|ESPN: 9 | 2 SF||Top 247: 16 | 4 SF||Rivals: 37||Scout: 15 | 6 SF|
UK offered Jeffries, Wiseman’s EYBL teammate, last month.
|Small Forward||6-8 | 185 lbs.||Fort Wayne, IN||North Side|
|ESPN: 21 | 5 SF||Top 247: 35 | 8 SF||Rivals: 35||Scout: 14 | 4 SF|
Brooks picked up a scholarship offer from Kentucky a few weeks back on an unofficial visit. He enjoyed himself so much he’s back for the second time in a month for Madness.
|Point Guard||6-3 | 185 lbs.||Garland, Texas||South Garland|
|ESPN: 17 | 3 PG||Top 247: 12 | 2 PG||Rivals: 14||Scout: 20 | 3 PG|
Calipari and Kenny Payne visited Maxey on Tuesday, but SMU is the favorite, especially since they just hired his dad, Tyrone Maxey, as their director of recruiting. The fact that this is still allowed makes the NCAA even more of a joke.
Jaemyn Brakefield, PF (2020)
The Huntington Prep star already lists Kentucky as one of his favorites.
Jalen Johnson, SF (2020)
Home state Wisconsin is an early leader for Johnson, who attended the Team USA minicamp last weekend.
Big Blue Madness todayðŸ”¹â–«ï¸ðŸ”¹â–«ï¸ #BBN
— Jalen Johnson (@Jalen_J23) October 13, 2017
Zion Harmon, PG (2021)
Harmon, a Bowling Green, Kentucky native, may only be a freshman, but his recruitment is already one to watch. Only the second freshman to attend Madness in the Calipari era, Harmon looked right at home when he visited UK for the Florida football game a few weeks back:
Unofficial to Kentucky was a great experience ðŸ™ðŸ½ðŸ˜Ž pic.twitter.com/VC9bXswNnq
— Zion Harmon (@its_zionharmon) September 24, 2017
Any recruit that poses with the Joe B. statue gets an automatic bump up in my book.