UK Men's Basketball

Team USA notes: Five-star trio of 2017 recruits looking at Big Blue Madness visit

Gary Trent Jr. is one of the top shooting guards in the class of 2017, and Kentucky is one of the top schools on his list.
Gary Trent Jr. is one of the top shooting guards in the class of 2017, and Kentucky is one of the top schools on his list.

COLORADO SPRINGS, Colo. – A few quick notes from the Monday morning session of Team USA U17 training camp …

▪  Top-five prospect Wendell Carter said no school is No. 1 on his list at the moment, despite a recent report that Kentucky was “higher” than Duke in his recruitment. He said he still plans on attending Big Blue Madness in October — hopefully alongside fellow class of 2017 stars Gary Trent Jr. and Kevin Knox, he said — and would then like to return to Lexington for a second visit. Carter reiterated that he will take his first official visit to Harvard in the fall. (Knox said he did not have any visits scheduled yet, and Trent said he was hoping to be at Big Blue Madness for the second consecutive year).

▪  Knox – the No. 6 recruit in the class of 2017 – showed off his athleticism throughout Monday’s practice session. On one play, he took off from the baseline, several feet outside of the paint, and still managed to over-jump the rim. The ball clanged off the backside of the rim with such force that it almost hit the ceiling of the Team USA complex. Knox successfully finished off several other dunks, and played well away from the basket. He said he plans to narrow his list of schools to 10 or 12 after next month’s Peach Jam and does not anticipate picking a college until the spring.

▪  Trent Jr. — an elite 2017 shooting guard — said the same six schools have been in contact with him the most: Kentucky, Duke, Arizona, Ohio State, Michigan State and UCLA. He plans to cut his list to 5-7 schools after Peach Jam.

▪  UK target Jarred Vanderbilt was a starter on last summer’s USA U16 team and was expected to be a key player on the U17 team, but he won’t be on the squad this year. Vanderbilt showed up to Team USA camp with a foot injury and was diagnosed with a stress fracture, so he was not able to participate in the training camp.

▪  Class of 2018 standout Romeo Langford also won’t be on this summer’s Team USA U17 squad. Langford — the No. 3 recruit nationally — did not make the first cut Sunday. The word from those who were here over the weekend indicated that Langford was a bit passive in his first Team USA camp. “He’s more talented than I think he showed here,” Scout.com’s Evan Daniels told the Herald-Leader. “He’s had an awesome spring. He just didn’t fully replicate it here.”

▪  2018 point guard Immanuel Quickley made some nice plays Monday. The 6-foot-4 prospect from Baltimore has already received some interest from Kentucky.

Ben Roberts: 859-231-3216, @NextCats

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