UK Men's Basketball

UK basketball recruiting notes: John Wall visits UK signee; Marques Bolden’s Crystal Ball

De’Aaron Fox is considered the No. 1 point guard in the recruiting class of 2016. He signed with Kentucky in November.
De’Aaron Fox is considered the No. 1 point guard in the recruiting class of 2016. He signed with Kentucky in November. Nike

UK’s point guard of the future — De’Aaron Fox — has often been compared to one of the Wildcats’ greatest point guards of the past, John Wall.

On Friday night, they were both in the same gym.

Wall attended Fox’s high school game in Cypress, Texas and watched the five-star UK signee go for 36 points in a 77-74 loss. Fox — a 6-foot-4 prospect in the class of 2016 — scored 27 points in the second half and 18 points in the fourth quarter alone.

Afterward, Wall posed for a picture with Fox, who officially signed with the Wildcats in November.


Lil bra @swipathefox & I ...He up nxt watch out #BBN !!

A photo posted by johnwall (@johnwall) on

Wall’s Washington Wizards will play at Houston on Saturday night.

Recruiting analysts who have scouted Fox have compared him favorably to Wall as a high schooler, especially after the young point guard committed to Kentucky. Fox has embraced that comparison.

“Everyone calls me John Wall 2.0 — and I like the comparison,” Fox told Slam Magazine earlier this month. “Who wouldn’t enjoy being compared to a former No. 1 pick? But right now, I think I shoot much better than he did, at least for high school.”

Crystal Ball

The run of UK predictions on the 247Sports Crystal Ball page for five-star center Marques Bolden is finished.

Kansas insider Matt Scott logged a Duke prediction for Bolden on Friday, ending a streak of 10 consecutive pro-UK picks on the page dating back to last month. (Scott has been correct with 25 of 29 predictions for class of 2016 prospects, if anyone is curious).

UK and Duke are now viewed as the favorites for Bolden, who is widely regarded as the No. 1 center in the class of 2016 and is also considering Kansas, Oklahoma, Texas Christian and a few other schools.

Coach John Calipari said recently that UK is looking to add one more “big guy” to its recruiting class, and Bolden is thought to be the Cats’ No. 1 target.

There is no timetable for Bolden’s final decision.

Indianapolis targets

Five-star prospects Paul Scruggs and Kris Wilkes will visit Michigan State for the Spartans’ game against Rutgers on Sunday.

Scruggs and Wilkes are friends and AAU teammates from Indianapolis and have taken several recruiting trips together, including one to UK last summer. Both players are in the class of 2017.

Wilkes — a 6-foot-7 small forward — is ranked by Rivals as the No. 10 overall prospect in the junior class and also visited UK for Big Blue Madness in October. Maryland is expected to watch Wilkes play Saturday night.

Scruggs — a 6-4 guard — is ranked by 247Sports as the No. 19 junior in the country and was in Rupp Arena for Wednesday night’s victory over Missouri.

UK assistant coach Tony Barbee has watched both players this month.

Ben Roberts: 859-231-3216, @NextCats