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Sunday, May 19, 2024

Kentucky 2024-25 roster: Lamont Butler, star of San Diego State’s Ultimate 4 run, transfers to Wildcats

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New Kentucky coach Mark Pope landed his second switch portal dedication of the offseason on Friday when San Diego State star guard Lamont Butler dedicated to the Wildcats. The 2023-24 Mountain West Defensive Participant of the 12 months averaged 9.3 factors this previous season for the Aztecs.

Butler is the second switch portal dedication Pope has landed this month. Final weekend, Drexel star ahead Amari Williams dedicated to the Wildcats. Williams, a three-time CAA Defensive Participant of the 12 months, was the second newcomer UK landed since Pope’s arrival after Collin Chandler flipped his dedication from BYU to Kentucky. 

Chandler, a member of the 2022 recruiting cycle, spent the final two years on a Mormon mission. He was Pope’s highest-rated signee (No. 33 general) throughout his tenure at BYU. 

With Kentucky star freshman Reed Sheppard declaring for the NBA Draft and Joey Hart transferring to Ball State, the Wildcats have zero returning scholarship gamers remaining.

4-star guard Billy Richmond decommitted from the Wildcats’ once-heralded recruiting class a couple of hours after Chandler dedicated to the Wildcats. Chandler’s dedication comes after a number of members of UK’s 2024 recruiting class re-opened their recruitments following the departure of coach John Calipari for Arkansas. Travis Perry stays dedicated to UK, however 4 high 50 prospects previously pledged to the Wildcats at the moment are on monitor to play elsewhere subsequent season.

Pope, who spent the previous 5 seasons as BYU’s coach, performed at UK underneath Rick Pitino from 1994 to 1996 and was a key a part of this system’s 1996 nationwide title run. With most of Kentucky’s 2023-24 roster both out of eligibility, within the switch portal, or headed to the NBA Draft, his first order of enterprise is constructing a roster for subsequent season. 

CBS Sports activities is monitoring the standing of the Kentucky roster and recruiting class in actual time. This is the place each present UK participant and commit presently stand. 

Incoming transfers

Amari Williams (Switch from Drexel)

GP: 32 | GS: 32 | PPG: 12.2 | RPG: 7.8

The three-time CAA Defensive Participant of the 12 months is a invaluable addition for Kentucky. Williams brings expertise (79 profession begins) and might be among the best defensive gamers within the SEC from Day 1. Williams has averaged at the least 1.8 blocks per recreation over the past three seasons. Williams shot 51.7% from the ground on 8.4 makes an attempt per recreation through the 2023-24 marketing campaign. Williams ranked No. 57 within the CBS Sports activities Switch Portal Rankings. 

Lamont Butler (Switch from San Diego State)

GP: 37 | GS: 37 | PPG: 9.3 | APG: 3.0

Butler is answerable for one of many greatest pictures in Ultimate 4 historical past. Butler hit a game-winning jumper on the 2023 Ultimate 4 in opposition to FAU to assist his college advance to the nationwide title recreation. Butler is a confirmed veteran who excelled on the defensive finish within the Mountain West. Butler and Williams will give the UK two of the highest defenders within the SEC.

Kentucky underclassmen

Brennan Canada

GP: 5 | GS: 0 | PPG: 0 | RPG: 0.4

Canada appeared in 25 complete video games over his five-year profession with Kentucky. He made 5 appearances this season.

Kareem Watkins

GP: 6 | GS: 1 | PPG: 0 | RPG: 0.2

Watkins has appeared in 20 video games over the past 4 seasons with Kentucky. He made six appearances this season.

Walker Horn

GP: 4 | GS: 0 | PPG: 0 | RPG: 0

Horn has made eight appearances over the past two seasons for Kentucky.

Grant Darbyshire

GP: 4 | GS: 0 | PPG: 0 | RPG: 0

Darbyshire made 4 appearances for Kentucky this season.

Kentucky gamers not anticipated to return

Reed Sheppard (Declared for NBA Draft)

GP: 33 | GS: 5 | PPG: 12.5 | RPG: 4.1 

Sheppard was named CBS Sports activities Freshman of the 12 months after placing up one of the vital environment friendly stat strains within the nation. Sheppard made solely 5 begins in 33 video games however had an influence every time he stepped onto the court docket. Sheppard completed the season capturing 53.6% from the ground, 51.1% on 3-pointers (on 4.4 makes an attempt), and 83.1% from the charity stripe. Sheppard completed 5 steals shy (82) of breaking the single-season report set by Rajon Rondo through the 2004-05 season. On Thursday, Sheppard formally declared for the NBA Draft.

Zvonimir Ivišić (Transferring to Arkansas)

GP: 15 | GS: 0 | PPG: 5.5 | RPG: 3.3

Whereas Ivišić did not play a ton throughout his freshman season, he undoubtedly made an influence when he performed. Hours after he was dominated eligible by the NCAA on Jan. 20, Ivišić recorded 13 factors, 5 rebounds, and a pair of assists in his collegiate debut.

Days after Ivišić entered the switch portal, he introduced he would comply with Calipari and had dedicated to Arkansas.

Ugonna Onyenso (Declared for NBA Draft)

GP: 24 | GS: 14 | PPG: 3.6 | RPG: 4.8

The highest shot-blocker on final season’s Kentucky group averaged 18.6 minutes per evening. Onyenso made 14 begins after taking part in lower than seven minutes as a freshman the yr earlier than, however has declared for the NBA Draft.

D.J. Wagner (In switch portal)

GP: 29 | GS: 28 | PPG: 9.9 | RPG: 1.9

Inside a couple of days after Calipari’s departure, his hiring at Arkansas and Pope’s arriving at UK, Wagner entered the switch portal.

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Wagner ranked because the No. 6 participant popping out of highschool and was one of many prized recruits from his class. The Wagner household has deep ties to Calipari, as D.J.’s father, Dajuan Wagner, performed for Calipari when he was the coach at Memphis.

Rob Dillingham (Declared for NBA Draft)

GP: 32 | GS: 1 | PPG: 15.2 | RPG: 2.9 

The highest-ranked participant in CBS Sports activities’ NBA Draft prospect rankings is popping professional. Dillingham was named SEC sixth Man of the 12 months after placing up huge numbers in his first season at Kentucky. The 6-3 guard made solely a single begin however was certainly one of Kentucky’s finest gamers your complete season. Dillingham is a artful guard with a fast burst that may get to the rim every time he pleases. Dillingham has obtained buzz over the previous few months as a possible No. 1 general decide. 

Aaron Bradshaw (Transferring to Ohio State)

GP: 26 | GS: 10 | PPG: 4.9 | RPG: 3.3

Bradshaw was the primary participant from Kentucky’s top-ranked 2023 recruiting class to enter his identify within the switch portal. Bradshaw missed the beginning of the season as a result of damage and appeared for the primary time on Dec. 2 in opposition to UNC Wilmington. Bradshaw was the No. 5 recruit popping out of highschool. Bradshaw is anticipated to switch to Ohio State, in accordance with 247Sports

Adou Thiero (In switch portal)

GP: 25 | GS: 19 | PPG: 7.2 | RPG: 5

Thiero entered his identify into the switch portal final month and is the No. 53 participant out there in David Cobb’s switch portal rankings. Thiero noticed a bigger function throughout his second season in Lexington, making 19 begins and 25 appearances whereas averaging career-highs in nearly each statistical class.

Joey Hart (Transfering to Ball State)

GP: 7 | GS: 0 | PPG: 0.4 | RPG: 0

Hart will enter the switch portal after taking part in sparingly as a freshman. The previous three-star recruit dedicated to Kentucky out of highschool over UCF, Ball State, Drake and Northwestern amongst others. Hart dedicated to Ball State on Thursday.

Justin Edwards (Declared for NBA Draft)

GP: 32 | GS: 30 | PPG: 8.8 | RPG: 3.4

Edwards was the primary Kentucky participant to declare for the draft and determined to show professional days earlier than Calipari left this system. The previous highly-touted prospect confirmed flashes of his five-star billing all through the season. Edwards tasks as somebody who will both get drafted late within the first spherical or early within the second spherical of this summer time’s draft. Edwards is an ideal swing for the fences prospect.

Antonio Reeves (Out of eligibility)

GP: 33 | GS: 33 | PPG: 20.2 | RPG: 4.2

The main scorer on Kentucky final season is out of eligibility. Reeves transferred to Kentucky in 2022 after spending the primary three seasons at Illinois State. Reeves by no means entered his identify into the switch portal final summer time however reportedly took summer time courses at Illinois State, the place he started his profession. He completed his faculty profession with a career-high in factors and rebounds.

Tre Mitchell (Out of eligibility)

GP: 27 | GS: 24 | PPG: 10.7 | RPG: 7.2

Like Reeves, Mitchell is out of eligibility. Mitchell transferred to Kentucky for his last faculty season after stops at UMass, Texas, and West Virginia. Mitchell offered a invaluable veteran presence for a younger roster and began 24 out of the 27 video games he appeared in.

Jordan Burks (In switch portal)

GP: 20 | GS: 0 | PPG: 1.9 | RPG: 1.6 

Burks is a former three-star recruit from the 2023 recruiting cycle. He appeared in 20 video games this season and scored a career-high 13 factors in a win over Vanderbilt. Burks entered the switch portal on Friday. Kentucky may have zero scholarship gamers returning on the roster from final season.

Kentucky’s incoming recruiting class

Underneath Calipari, Kentucky completed with a top-five recruiting class each cycle since 247Sports began monitoring group rankings in 2010. The Wildcats landed the No. 1 recruiting class in 2011, 2012, 2013, 2015, 2020, and 2023 underneath his watch. However in an period when age and expertise rule the day in faculty basketball, relying so closely on one-and-done prospects started to harm Kentucky in latest seasons.

Here’s a take a look at Kentucky’s roster and incoming recruiting class with 247Sports rankings.

No. 33 Collin Chandler

Chandler is technically a part of the 2022 recruiting class. However after spending two years on a Mormon mission, the Utah native might be a freshman within the 2024-25 season. The 6-4 guard ranked as a four-star prospect and was initially dedicated to BYU earlier than requesting a launch and turning into Pope’s first dedication at Kentucky. 247Sports recruiting analyst Brandon Jenkins described Chandler as “a aggressive guard who all the time performs in assault mode.”

No. 73 Travis Perry

Perry was Kentucky’s lone signee from the Bluegrass State. He ranked because the No. 6 level guard within the 2024 cycle and dedicated to Kentucky over Alabama, Cincinnati, Ole Miss, and Western Kentucky. Perry is the all-time main scorer in Kentucky highschool boys’ basketball historical past.

Class of 2024 recruits not dedicated

No. 8 Jayden Quaintance 

The very best-ranked signee from Kentucky’s incoming recruiting class is exclusive due to his age. Quaintance will not flip 17 years previous till July, making him ineligible for the 2025 NBA Draft. NBA guidelines state {that a} participant should be at the least 19 years previous through the calendar yr of the draft, which opens the door for him to play two seasons in faculty. Quaintance dedicated to Kentucky over FloridaMissouri, and Ohio State. On Wednesday, Quaintance’s father, Haminn, instructed 247Sports that his son could be requesting his launch from his NIL to Kentucky. Haminn just lately posted on social media that their household could be “driving with the massive canine (Calipari) till the wheels fall off.” Calipari will possible try to lure in Quaintance to return to Arkansas.

No. 20 Karter Knox (Dedicated to Arkansas)

The brother of former Kentucky one-and-done Kevin Knox II was the latest participant to pledge their dedication to Calipari on this class. Knox dedicated to Kentucky on March 9 over Louisville, USF, and a return to Additional time Elite. He was the highest-ranked highschool participant on the board out there after former Indiana signee Liam McNeeley requested a launch from his NLI. Knox’s brother, Kobe, is a present participant at USF. Knox dedicated to Arkansas on Monday.

No. 22 Billy Richmond (Dedicated to Arkansas)

Richmond dedicated to Kentucky on Dec. 21 over Alabama, LSU, and Memphis however decommitted on April 16. The Richmond household has deep ties to Calipari. Richmond’s father, who can also be named Billy Richmond, performed for Calipari at Memphis from 2002 to 2004. Richmond is taken into account an athletic lefty wing with the prospect to make a right away influence when he steps onto campus this fall. Richmond dedicated to Arkansas on Friday.

No. 26 Boogie Fland (Dedicated to Arkansas)

The McDonald’s All-American is without doubt one of the finest combo guards within the nation and ranked solely behind Rutgers signee Dylan Harper for the highest participant on the place. Fland dedicated to Kentucky over Alabama, UConn, IndianaMarylandMichiganNorth Carolina, and St. John’s. Fland was Kentucky’s second dedication within the 2024 cycle, however requested for his launch lower than every week after Calipari was launched at Arkansas. Fland dedicated to Kentucky on Thursday.

No. 46 Somto Cyril 

The primary commit of Kentucky’s 2024 recruiting class picked the Wildcats over Cincinnati, Florida, Georgetown, Indiana, Kansas, Memphis, Oklahoma StateOle Miss, and Tennessee. Cyril ranks because the No. 10 heart in his class. Cyril was granted his launch from his NLI and de-committed from Kentucky on Wednesday.

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