NBA Scouting Director: Kentucky on Brink of Greatest Class Ever

If Kentucky adds Andrew Wiggins to a recruiting class that now includes James Young and Andrew and Aaron Harrison, head coach John Calipari could be moving toward his greatest recruiting class in history.

That’s what the Director of Scouting for one NBA team in the 2012 lottery told SNY.tv Thursday morning.

“On paper, for an NBA-type class certainly it’s the greatest of all time, you would think,” the Director of Scouting said by phone. “On paper it would be and yet there’s a lot to measure up to, too.”

The scout was referring to last year’s class that produced Calipari’s first national championship and the No. 1 and 2 picks in the NBA Draft in Anthony Davis and Michael Kidd-Gilchrist.

Still, speaking of the potential blockbuster class for 2013, the Director of Scouting said, “I mean, it’s mind boggling. What it tells me is NBA teams should just go rent a condo for the year in Lexington next year.”

The 6-foot-6 Young, the Scout.com No. 9 player in the Class of 2013, committed to Kentucky Thursday, choosing the school over Michigan State, Syracuse and Kansas.

“He’s up there,” the Director of Scouting said. “I don’t think he’s as good as Wiggins but with that said he’s a Top 10 player.”

Kentucky has already landed the Harrison twins, the Nos. 2 and 3 players in the Scout rankings.

“They’re Top 10 guys,” the Director of Scouting said. “You can make an argument if Wiggins doesn’t reclassify [to 2013 from 2014] one of those twins could go No. 1 in that class.”

A second NBA scout added: “I think the Harrison twins are phenomenal. They’re the best high school guards I’ve seen. The twins already put it in the conversation for [Calipari's] best class. And if he can round it out and get four or five of these elite players, I would say it’s his best class.”

Having already landed power forward Derek Willis, Kentucky remains in the mix for 6-9 power forward Julius Randle, another presumed lottery pick whom Scout has ranked at No. 4 in the class. Randle will announce in the spring.

Forwards Aaron Gordon (No. 5), Noah Vonleh (No. 7), Marcus Lee (No. 38) and Tyler Roberson (No. 47) are all also considering Kentucky, with Lee down to Cal and Kentucky and set to visit Friday for Midnight Madness.

Despite all that talent, the 6-8 Wiggins, who will not attend Kentucky’s Midnight Madness because he’s at home with family in Toronto, is considered the crown jewel of the group.

“In my opinion, he’s the best player player in the world in his birth year,” the Director of Scouting said. “I think he’s the best player in the world.”

Wiggins has yet to announce whether he will reclassify to 2013 from 2014, but if he does, Kentucky is considered the odds-on favorite, with Florida State also in the mix. Wiggins’s parents, former NBA player Mitchell Wiggins and former Canadian track star Marita Payne, both attended FSU.

If he does reclassify, the Director of Scouting said Wiggins would automatically be the No. 1 pick in the 2014 NBA Draft.

“I don’t see how anybody [else] is in the conversation right now,” he said.

Aaron Harrson, Young and Wiggins are all wing players, yet Calipari has apparently persuaded all of them that they can play — and thrive — together.

“Well, Cal does a good job of developing guys into being versatile players and being able to play the way he plays,” the Director of Scouting said.

“He doesn’t play a stereotypical game. He’ll use dribble penetration if that’s the right thing. He’ll throw lobs up to the rim. He develops players pretty well in terms of their versatility.

“I mean, how do you not have the ability to sell what Cal has done? He’s been to the Final Four multiple times. He’s won a national championship. He gets guys drafted.

“We don’t draft them because they play for Cal, we draft them because they’re great. And he recruits great players that we want.”

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39 comments
greggreen
greggreen

lets see if we can get a Sam Sheilds or a Alterraun Verner, if not i guess a 1 year deal with cro would be ok. but i would prefer to movie on and get younger

joemustgo
joemustgo

Nnamdi announced his retirement. Looks like Tanny got this one right.

j3tsfan29
j3tsfan29

Drop this bum asap, I Don't believe for one minute his hip caused him to suck taint. He sucked last year and sucked just the same this yr, only difference is the stats are worse. Same production. Vet minimum should be the only way we stick with this guy.

djf1
djf1

I hate to say it, but he's too much of a risk now.  I appreciate his contributions, but if I was idzik, I'd explore other options.

frustjetfn
frustjetfn

If retained, Cro should be paid what he is now in relation to other CB's and also taking into account his injury situation. Then give him a contract laden with performance incentives to be fair. - That's called reality and how a GM should negotiate contracts: no based on hopes, wishes or past performance that might never be achieved again. That will protect the teams interests. The performance incentives likewise, cover the player if he does return to optimum form.

johnnyl65
johnnyl65

Cro gets healthy,cut his pay in half move him to FS play Allen at SS bring in a new #1 CB. BANG!!!

johnnyl65
johnnyl65

Cro wants to drop down to 6 to 7 m. ,why not?

Bent
Bent

@joemustgo Well, he tried and failed to get him.  Arguably he got that one wrong because even though the Eagles outbid them the Jets were still preparing to give him big money.  He'd have done better here as a #2 to Revis though.

djf1
djf1

@joemustgo thank bob the eagles were dumb enough to pay him more.

MikeFrancesser
MikeFrancesser

@Hanknaples 
Hank,
Cromartie has done everything the team has asked of him.  He has kept his nose clean and matured greatly in his time here.  He has played through injury and expressed a willingness to stay and take a pay cut to do so.  Isn't this exactly the kind of player you usually claim the Jets should do right by?

djf1
djf1

@j3tsfan29 if you think his production this year is the same as last year, you are high.

Brendan
Brendan

@j3tsfan29 ............



Out of CB's who played 75% of the snaps last year (aka "starters"), Cromartie had the 6th lowest QB rating against in the league at the CB position. This is despite the fact that he pulled a Revis and covered opposing team's #1's all season. He was nothing short of fantastic last year, given the assignment he had. 

Bent
Bent

@j3tsfan29 I can't believe you think he sucked last season.

UncleJoesJetFarm
UncleJoesJetFarm

@j3tsfan29 


No way is he on the team next season. Even if he took a 50% pay cut, it would still be too much for his age/production. He simply wont be worth it. He has seen his best days and that was last season. He ranks at the bottom of list and the bottom only earns 1-2m if that. With his age and injuries he will be a steady decline and liability.

Bent
Bent

@djf1 @j3tsfan29 Well, his tackle and int numbers are about the same, but he has four passes defensed and has given up 860 yards and 7TDs.  Last year it was 12, 511 and 5.  Big difference.

j3tsfan29
j3tsfan29

He is and always will be a liability in coverage. Even in 2012 mike Wallace scored a td on this guy, yanno the "one trick pony"! CRo would have had even worse stats if our run defense was even remotely close to average. While he may have manned teams #1s he still got beat more often then not and that's even with a run defense who couldn't stop anyone. I'd also like to remind CRo is the reason shonn Greene ran for a td vs the chargers. Guy sucks at tackling, at covering, and jamming receivers. He's got hip issues and is getting up in age. Time to let him go.

Bent
Bent

@Hanknaples I didn't say you'd never paid out on a bet, just that there were bets you lost and never paid out on.


I recall you losing a bet to Pete57 that Pennington would have a better season than Peyton Manning in 2009 for example.  I assume you paid out on that one.


You involved me in the conversation by mentioning me by name above.  Otherwise it has nothing to do with me other than you asking me to confirm the bet, which I've done and you won't accept it, so I'm done here.

Bent
Bent

@Hanknaples @Bent 


Maybe if you paid out on previous bets you'd lost then you'd have more credibility and trust your word.


However, if you won't trust MY word then why are you even involving me in this conversation?

Bent
Bent

@Hanknaples @Bent 


You were given an opportunity to agree to the terms of the bet and didn't have the stones to do it.  Bad luck Hank.

Bent
Bent

@Hanknaples If you won't pay out on a bet you previously agreed on and lost, why should Brendan pay out on a bet you never agreed on?

Bent
Bent

@Hanknaples @Brendan Hank - YOU pay up.  Otherwise you're admitting that YOU'VE got no character and zero integrity.

Brendan
Brendan

@djf1 I first argued with Hank over the "David Harris & 1st rounder for Jay Cutler" trade. We go way back and this is more entertainment for me than anything else. 

Brendan
Brendan

@Hanknaples Your personal feelings about me have nothing to do with the facts I gave you. Can you please comment on them? 

Brendan
Brendan

@Hanknaples Hank, this has been explained to you. Nearly all of his kids were conceived in a 24 month stretch that started just before he was drafted and stretched into his 2nd season (this is based on the ages of his first 7 or 8 kids). He's since settled down and started a family of his own, while financially supporting the kids that are not with his current wife. 


He made mistakes that he didn't know how to deal with when he came to the Jets. The team helped him out financially and he has since been in contact with all of his kids. He was dumb, made mistakes, and has since grown from them and doesn't hide or skip out on his responsibilities. No, it's not ideal, but isn't it a good thing to see that, while he was with this team, he went from a guy running from his responsibilities to someone that owns up to them and has matured? 

Bent
Bent

@DarrolRayFanClub We've been over this a million times.  Hank still won't accept that wasn't a career year despite the fact he didn't have a career year in any category and his numbers being way, way down in most categories.

Brendan
Brendan

@Hanknaples Ohhhhh Hanker. You're the best. 


You didn't finalize any bet this year. It took us like 4 hours before you agreed to the Henne trade once upon a time. And it's just fantastic that you think "career year" for someone means going from an integral part of the offense (3rd down back averaging 70 yards from scrimmage a game) in addition to KR/PR duties to strictly a return man whose KR average wasn't even in the top-3 for his career. But Leon Washington did not have a "career year" in 2010. He wanted to be paid like a starting RB, broke his leg after signing a tender and hasn't been a legitimate RB for any team since. But yeah, career year and all that. 


And Hank, when we made the Henne/Sanchez bet, I even brought up an injury qualifier, and you shot me down. Fitting, that you should lose a bet when you disagreed with something logical solely because it was my idea. 


I will "pay up" on the non-bet if you pay up on the Henne bet. Otherwise, this "man up" stuff is just embarrassingly hypocritical. 

Brendan
Brendan

@Hanknaples We never finalized the bet. I was game, but you disappeared when it came time to do the "*shakes hand*" part, which we do here to finalize friendly wagers. 


I even gave you the chance this weekend to pick the Brownies, who you have been rooting for for the past five years, against the Jets, who you have rooted against for five years. But you disappeared as soon as I threw that out there (levi was there and thought it was a good idea, if you think I'm lying). 


But how about this: I will pay up on a bet that we never actually made (Vernon having double-digit sacks), if you pay up on the 2+ year old bet that we did finalize that you did lose where you said Chad Henne would have a better season than Mark Sanchez. Deal?

Brendan
Brendan

@Hanknaples We never made a bet about this season, although you did call the Vernon sacks thing.


Just curious....


57.1% completion, 868 yards, 4 TD"s, 4 INT's.


56.7% completion, 3,474 yards, 26 TD's, 18 INT's. 


Who did better? 

Bent
Bent

@j3tsfan29 That's all been true over the course of his career, but last year was easily his best ever season.


Whether you believe that last year was when he actually "got it" or the fact that he's breaking down means he'll never be back to his best is another matter...and that's the gamble whoever is paying his salary next year will be making.



j3tsfan29
j3tsfan29

I wasn't suggesting that at all. What I'm saying is teams didn't have to throw the ball to get a first down they could run right over us. Cros not as good as you guys make him out to be.

I find it sad but funny that our defense has become the bucs defense since we traded revis. Strong front 7 but the secondary is the downfall of the defense.

Blame it on the hip. Blame it on what you want. But CRo is not physical, with his size and speed he should be shutdown corner, unfortunantely he's.... Not.

Bent
Bent

@j3tsfan29 He was targeted 87 times last year, 83 times so far this year.  So, if you're suggesting his numbers only looked good last year because the run defense stunk and that meant he wasn't targeted as much, you are mistaken.


I'm sure we have this conversation once already though. 


His completion percentage against was 46% and his yards per catch against was 12.8 last year.  This year is 53% and 19.5.  The injury made a huge difference.