UK Recruiting

Newest Kentucky basketball recruiting target makes his ‘big announcement’

John Calipari: ‘I’m overrated as a recruiter’

Kentucky basketball coach John Calipari talks to the media on Tuesday, Nov. 20, 2018, about recruiting. UK lost out on James Wiseman, the top recruit for the class of 2019, who announced Tuesday he will attend Memphis.
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Kentucky basketball coach John Calipari talks to the media on Tuesday, Nov. 20, 2018, about recruiting. UK lost out on James Wiseman, the top recruit for the class of 2019, who announced Tuesday he will attend Memphis.

Five-star basketball recruit Johnny Juzang revealed his “big announcement” Wednesday night, a day after teasing that such news was on the way.

It wasn’t a commitment to Kentucky, but that could be coming soon enough.

Juzang announced that he is moving to the 2019 class and will attend college this fall, meaning he’ll be playing college basketball next season. “My college decision will be made in the next few weeks,” he said.

UK Coach John Calipari was in California on Friday for an in-home visit with Juzang and his family, and that meeting led to a Kentucky scholarship offer. Juzang is scheduled to take an official visit to Lexington early next week, and a commitment to the Wildcats could come soon after that. Virginia, Kansas, Villanova, UCLA and Southern Cal are among the other schools recruiting him.

National recruiting experts Jerry Meyer and Andrew Slater have both logged Crystal Ball predictions in favor of the Wildcats.

Juzang, who turned 18 years old in March, is currently the No. 21 overall player in the 2020 class, according to the 247Sports composite rankings. He has a reputation as a top-notch scorer and long-range shooter, and he also rebounds well for his position.

His only previous official visit was a recruiting trip to Virginia last fall.

The 6-foot-6 perimeter player averaged 23.0 points, 8.5 rebounds and 3.4 assists per game this past high school season after sitting out the first few weeks of the schedule with an injury. The Los Angeles native was also a top player for his Compton Magic squad on the Adidas circuit last summer, helping them emerge as arguably the best shoe-company league team in the country.

Calipari is still finalizing UK’s roster for next season. The Cats will definitely have guards Ashton Hagans, Immanuel Quickley and Tyrese Maxey, wings Dontaie Allen, Keion Brooks and Kahlil Whitney, and post player Nate Sestina, a graduate transfer from Bucknell.

UK is still waiting on decisions from current frontcourt players Nick Richards and EJ Montgomery — the program’s backups in the paint this past season — and those players will have until May 29 to remove their names from the NBA Draft and return to school.

Calipari is also still recruiting for next season. He met with the family of Virginia Tech graduate transfer Kerry Blackshear Jr. — a 6-foot-10 post player — earlier this week, and he was scheduled to see five-star guards Sharife Cooper and RJ Hampton, both of whom are reclassification candidates, Wednesday.

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