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REPORT: Memphis remains in the hunt for RJ Hampton, Kansas still considered favorite



2019 five-star combo guard RJ Hampton may officially be down to Kansas, Kentucky, Memphis, and Texas Tech, but many recruiting analysts have pegged the Jayhawks as the solid favorite for several weeks now.

Texas Tech was added to his list once Duke was dropped, but they have never been seen as a serious contender. Memphis was once seen as a co-favorite with Kansas for a while, but once they added four-star guard Boogie Ellis, Arkansas-Little Rock graduate transfer Rayjon Tucker, and five-star forward Precious Achuiwa over the last week, most assumed they were out of the running, as well. With those three additions, the Tigers are now technically out of scholarships.

That would leave just the Jayhawks and the Wildcats for his services, right? Well, not exactly.

Corey Evans of reported last night that Memphis is still a serious option for Hampton if Rayjon Tucker, who is currently testing the NBA Draft waters, were to keep his name in the draft. He went as far as to say that they might even be the “team to beat” at this point.

And not long after, the five-star combo guard acknowledged that there is some truth to the report.

Even with this most recent rumor, Evan Daniels of 247 Sports said that he still believes Kansas is the “firm leader” for the 6-foot-4 combo guard out of Little Elm, TX.

So where does Kentucky fit into all of this?

Well, not too well, obviously.

As I wrote in Pilgrim’s Insider Notes last week (you can catch up on that here), Kentucky quietly put themselves in a better position with Hampton than most believed over the last few weeks. In fact, I genuinely believe that the five-star guard’s inner circle actually prefers the Wildcats over all of the remaining finalists from a developmental standpoint. The reality of the situation, though, is that UK’s backcourt is simply too loaded, and no matter how confident he is in his abilities, the logjam would make things too complicated.

And that’s if he decides to follow through with the college route.

Back at the Nike EYBL event in Atlanta a few weeks ago, I heard a rumor that while attending college in the class of 2019 still remained the likely outcome for Hampton, he was also contemplating the idea of heading overseas to play professionally for one season before making the jump to the NBA.

And then following the EYBL event in Indianapolis last weekend, sources told KSR that Hampton was considering signing with Puma and playing in China for one season before heading back to the states and entering the NBA Draft.

Hampton has said that he’ll likely announce his decision by the end of this month, where things will certainly be interesting. I’d still expect Kansas to be the choice, but don’t be surprised if he breaks out his Mandarin dictionary and signs a deal to play in China.


Article written by Jack Pilgrim

Follow me on Twitter: @JackPilgrimKSR

6 Comments for REPORT: Memphis remains in the hunt for RJ Hampton, Kansas still considered favorite

  1. EastKY-BlueBlood
    8:35 pm May 18, 2019 Permalink

    If I could have any player I wanted, I would send Kaden on down UW way, where we won’t hear from him. Blackshear, would of course be good, but If I could take what I think would put us over the top, would be a June-July late reclassification of one Mr.Isaiah Todd!! Shot blocker, rebounder, athletic, and crazy well rounded offensive game!! Imagine a trio of Hagans,Quickley, and Maxey controlling the rock, with this list of long athletic, positionless, hybrid players with similar, but different specific best attributes in their game, among Whitney 6-7, Juzang 6-6, Brooks 6-8, Allen 6-6, Montgomery 6-9, and Todd 6-10, and then 2 Bigs, who are also different in what they bring, with Sestina 6-9 & Richards 6-11. Sestina brings strength, high motor, good IQ, rebounding, ability to play with bk to basket, but also dangerous in the pick n roll, but especially pick n pop game, due to his comfort level with facing up all the way out to beyond the 3pt area, and the ability to consistently knock down catch and shoot jumpers. Then Nick, with elite size, rim protection, rebounding, ability if gets position and can get shoulders turned to shoot his jump hook, as well as face up catch and shoot comfortably out to 15ft or so. Both and especially Nate good ft shooters for Bigs. Nick’s biggest improvements hinges on his ability to ever slow his mind down, and learn how to be aggressive, but albeit while allowing the game to come to him, and react naturally to what the defense allows, without hesitation. That takes time, mins played with that from a kid til now, but he only going into like yr 7 of playing, and no guarantee that part comes.. Besides that, adding Todd, and EJ & Nick back would make our roster like a very well made Swiss Army knife!! Lol According to whatever we would be facing, we would have endless options to use to combat the opposition. Want to go long, and with shooting, Maxey,Juzang,Brooks,Todd, Sestina.. Go hard nose, athletic, defensive, Hagans,Maxey,Whitney,EJ,and pick of Nick,Nate,or even Brooks, who can guard multiple pos, Blk shots, reb.. Go very small, qk, against a small aggressive pressing team, 3-Guard Hagans,I.Q.,Maxey,Brooks (handles and passed well for size) and Todd or EJ.. So many options and ways to go.. What will be evident, due to all he offers, and being a gamer, Brooks will be hard to keep off the floor. May not be the star, but a possible X-Factor guy written all over him.. Give me Todd and let’s roll the dice!! But instead of losing ut mind, bet ur btm dollar, if we lose out Jaden and Blackshear Jr, Cal may not fill withanother, but it will NOT be without the lack of him getting after it, looking for another frontcourt option..

    • EastKY-BlueBlood
      8:36 pm May 18, 2019 Permalink

      I hate autocorrect. My son’s name is Kaden, so it quickly changes Jaden to Kaden, guessing due to that name being texted often.. lol

  2. Smyrna_Cat
    10:45 pm May 18, 2019 Permalink

    So, last week we were in better shape than most thought, and this week we are “not too well.”

    Okay. Thanks.

  3. Cletis75
    11:16 pm May 18, 2019 Permalink

    Still want to see RJ and Maxey in the back court. If he’s truly not scared of competition, he comes here. If he’s scared then we don’t need doubters of themselves. Come on down RJ, and show us the strength!

  4. Thetruthshallsetbennyfree
    11:30 pm May 18, 2019 Permalink

    The bidding war has begun.

  5. jim tom
    11:55 am May 19, 2019 Permalink

    May the highest bidder win