[Moderated by Matt Jones]
There was a ton of news on the basketball front yesterday, so let’s waste no time in getting right into it:
Yesterday confirmed what many in Big Blue Nation had already believed, Karl Towns Jr., the #1 recruit in the 2015 class will announce his college decision on December 4th. In the tradition of most top-ranked recruits these days, seems to be favoring the Wildcats. BustingBrackets.com claims to have a source close to the Towns family that says that it is “a done deal” that Towns will announce his commitment to Kentucky on that day. Towns got comfortable in Lexington this summer playing for John Calipari and the Dominican Republic National Team, and has long since been considered a near lock to end up in Lexington.
Now in even more Karl Towns recruiting news, the folks at St. Joseph’s Academy in New Jersey say that Towns is in a position to reclassify to the 2014 class if he so chooses. The 17-year old sophomore is old enough to be a Junior and most expect him to eventually jump forward a year to get to college sooner rather than later. Don’t believe me? Hear it straight from his athletic director’s mouth:
“He is so gifted, he has like a 4.2 GPA and he has all accelerated courses,” St. Joseph athletic director Jerry Smith said.
“He is so bright that there is no reason for him to just waste his time (in high school),” Smith said, “but we are a high academic institution. We are a college prep school and he will probably enter one of those programs in his junior year.”
Come on down, Karl.
Aaron Gordon, the 6th ranked player in the 2013 class trimmed his list to 3 schools late last night, leaving only Arizona, Washington, and Kentucky in the mix for one of the best high school dunkers I have personally ever seen. Cal, Oregon, and Kansas were the 3 schools that were cut from Gordon’s list. Gordon spent last weekend in Lexington getting to know the finer points of what Kentucky has to offer and it seems that for the most part, he liked what he saw. Gordon hasn’t set a timetable for his college decision yet, but it looks like the ‘Cats will at the very least be in the hunt til the end. Plus, how pissed do you think Washington would be if UK stole another recruit from them off the west coast? Worked out pretty well last time:
Moving on from recruiting news, to more recent recruiting news. All 5 of Kentucky’s 2013 commitments signed their National Letters of Intent yesterday, locking up the #1 recruiting class in the nation for the 5th consecutive year. Andrew and Aaron Harrison signed despite rumors that they may wait until the spring signing period, and James Young, Marcus Lee, and Derek Willis all inked on the dotted line as well, so for the first time we all get to hear what Calipari’s thoughts are on next year’s Freshman All-Americans:
Aaron Harrison: “Aaron is more of a scoring guard who can make shots and make plays at the rim. He can also play some point in a pinch. Like his brother, Andrew, he has the ability to physically dominate the opponent.”
Andrew Harrison: “Andrew comes in ready to play physically at the point-guard position. He’s a driver, slasher and playmaker with great size. He and his brother Aaron have the ability to be great on-ball defenders.”
James Young: “James is a long, athletic and skilled wing. He’s a lefty who can shoot it and get in transition. You can throw it ahead to him and he can make basketball plays. He rebounds the ball for his position as well anyone in the class.”
Marcus Lee: “Marcus Lee is a long, agile, quick-bounce, quick-twitch, 6-9 forward. He gets to the basket, he’s a terrific shot-blocker and he can rebound above the rim. Marcus has unlimited upside because he’s going to get stronger and he’s going to improve his skill around the basket. His speed, quickness, jumping ability and length set him apart.”
Derek Willis: “Derek is a very skilled, 6-9 big man who is learning to play through bumps, which is going to elevate his game. He’s a long-armed basketball player who can get his hands on balls and really pass. Like Marcus, he has a tremendous upside because he’s going to get stronger and be able to play more physical and really use his size and his shot-making ability to spread the court for us.”
Ladies and Gentleman, your 2014 National Champions…
If another #1 ranked recruiting class just isn’t enough for you, Calipari also said yesterday that he is still planning on adding 1 or 2 more recruits to the class, but left you all to speculate on who that may be. Will it be Andrew Wiggins? Julius Randle? Aaron Gordon? Some combination of those 3? Either way, all 3 are Top 10 ranked recruits, and all 3 will only help but seperate what may be one of the best recruiting classes of all time from the rest of college basketball.
Kentucky’s home opener against Lafayette (PA) tonight will once again be without Ryan Harrow manning the point for the Wildcats, who according to John Calipari, is doing better but still isn’t 100%, and won’t play until he is. It makes sense to sit Harrow out until he’s healthy, especially this early in the season, but we all wish Harrow a speedy recovery. Shame on you, to whoever got him sick.
Remember, BBN. Andrew Wiggins will be playing Christian Faith Academy from North Carolina at Scott Co. High School on Sunday at 4pm. Go out and show your support for the next great NBA superstar who could end up in Lexington. Have a nice Friday.
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