Another in-state recruit has attracted the attention of the University of Kentucky men’s basketball staff.
UK assistant coach Joel Justus will visit Pendleton County junior Dontaie Allen at his high school on Saturday. Pendleton County Coach Keaton Belcher confirmed the visit to the Herald-Leader.
Allen, a 6-foot-6 forward, scored more points than any other player in Kentucky last season (1,019, five more than highly-touted freshman Zion Harmon). He averaged 31.8 points and 11.4 rebounds as a junior while shooting 59.1 percent from the field (39.6 from three-point range).
Eastern Kentucky University, Morehead State, Northern Kentucky, IUPUI and Winthrop have offered Allen. He’s recored 57 double-doubles in 105 high school games and has 2,697 points, 1,044 rebounds and 312 assists in his career.
“If there’s a player in the state of Kentucky that works harder on his game individually than Dontaie Allen, I would love to meet him and see his workout routine, because every day at 6:30 a.m., Dontaie is at our gym working on his game,” Belcher told the Herald-Leader in a profile of Allen published in January. “For the past three years he’s been the first student to walk into the building every single day and we don’t start class until 8:05. And it’s not like it’s wasted time. He’s in there getting a sweat in, working on his ball handling, working on his jump shot, working on his post moves. It’s amazing how driven he is despite all the hype that he’s always had and despite the scholarship offers.”
UK during the high school postseason started to keep tabs on KyKy Tandy, a 6-1 junior at University Heights Academy in Hopkinsville. He took a visit to Rupp Arena in February after scoring 43 points in a district finals win. Wildcats head coach John Calipari two weeks later was in attendance to watch Tandy score 33 points in the 2nd Region championship game. Tandy in March led UHA to its first Sweet Sixteen appearance since 2008; Florida, Tennessee, Cincinnati and Oklohoma are among the schools that have offered him.
UK has not signed an in-state boys’ basketball player since Dominique Hawkins (Madison Central) and Derek Willis (Bullitt East) in the class of 2013.