By John M. BroderickIn the past two weeks, we’ve seen a lot of new faces on the Kentucky basketball team.
It was the most exciting recruiting class in Kentucky’s history, but a few weeks back, the Wildcats announced that one of the recruits was already playing for Kentucky.
That’s not surprising.
Kentucky’s roster is loaded with talented prospects.
But in an interview with the Louisville Courier-Journal last week, coach John Calipari said that it wouldn’t surprise him if the freshman wasn’t the player he was when he entered the draft.
“We’ll be very surprised if he doesn’t end up playing here,” Caliparian said.
When the Kentucky Wildcats announced their 2018 recruiting class, the headline was, “This is a big recruiting class.
But will this be the biggest Kentucky class ever?”
The answer to that question was clear.
Caliparyas draft class ranked No. 1 in the country, behind only Kansas and Oklahoma.
The Crimson Tide was the only team in the top 10.
In the first half of the year, Kentucky’s recruiting class was ranked No: 3 in the nation, No: 10 in the Associated Press poll, No. 5 in the USA Today Coaches Poll, No 1 in USA Today’s “Big Board” and No. 6 in ESPN.com’s “Top 50.”
In the first four weeks of the 2018-19 school year, the Kentucky recruiting class ranked second in the Big Board and No: 6 in the AP Poll, fifth in the Coaches poll, and No 1.
Calipari didn’t have any doubt that the Kentucky class was going to be very good.
In fact, he said that in the first week of the recruiting process, his biggest concern was “what our class could look like and what it could look and feel like.”
But Caliparo said in his recruiting press conference after Kentucky’s first day of classes in early January that his biggest fear was “the first few weeks,” when Kentucky was still rebuilding.
“I don’t want to put pressure on myself, but that first few months, the first few games, that’s the most important thing for us to be able to get through that,” Calipsary said.
He said that Kentucky was very focused on the big picture, as well.
“The biggest thing I think is, we’re going to put a team together.
We’re going the right way, we have the right mindset, and we’re just going to work through it,” Calipparian said, “and we’ll get it done.
And then we’ll be back to the real basketball world, where we can really get to know our players.”
The first few years are important for Caliparis team because of the time they’ll have to put together a winning program.
“If we don’t get it right, then it’s going to hurt us,” Calibar said.
“You’ve got to put the best players in place.
You’ve got a team that’s going on to win, that needs to win a championship.
And I think that’s what we have to be focused on right now, because we’re not ready.”
Kentucky’s top recruiting classes of the last 10 years:•2017: No. 7 in the Pac-12 Conference, No.: 1 in AP poll, Top 25 in USA Thelonius Mott: No: 9 in USAThe 2016-17 recruiting class: No.: 3 in AP Poll; No. 4 in USA.2015-16: No