JohnCalipariSmile

NBA Draft success fueling blue-chip Calipari recruiting classes at Kentucky

3 Comments

This Obvious News of the Day is brought to you by the four first-round picks that Kentucky had in the 2012 NBA Draft.

With Anthony Davis and Michael Kidd-Gilchrist walking across the stage as the first- and second-overall picks Thursday night, Calipari has now laid groundwork for recruiting success even farther into the future.

The word has been spreading around social media in recent days, and it seems to ring true: “If Calipari offers you a scholarship, he often believes you have the potential to be a first-round pick.”

It began with John Wall and DeMarcus Cousins at Kentucky, it continues with Davis and Kidd-Gilchrist, and it will likely follow suit in 2013, with blue-chip prospects Nerlens Noel, Alex Poythress, and Archie Goodwin joining the Wildcats from the Class of 2012.

“I just told you three years ago, ‘Let’s make this the gold standard,'” Calipari told the Lexington Herald-Leader. “In three years, we’ll have 10 percent of the league,” he added with a bit of (understandable) hyperbole.

Criticism of Calipari is not difficult to come across, but he has clearly perfected a system now that it has culminated in a national championship.

But the reality is this: College is meant to prepare young people for a working career. Is that not exactly what Calipari and the Wildcats are doing?

Wall, Cousins, Davis, Kidd-Gilchrist, Marquis Teague, Terrence Jones, etc. All of these players have or will ink contracts that give them more money that they have ever seen (or many of us will ever see).

With financial planning, it could last them the rest of their lives. If I were a blue-chip recruit, why wouldn’t I want someone who has been proven to do that for his former players?

Bottom line: It’s difficult to beat.

Daniel Martin is a writer and editor at JohnnyJungle.com, covering St. John’s. You can find him on Twitter:@DanielJMartin_

PREGAME SHOOTAROUND: A Big 12 and a Big Ten showdown

Denzel Valentine
(AP Photo/Al Goldis)
Leave a comment

GAME OF THE NIGHT: No. 10 West Virginia at No. 6 Kansas, 7:00 p.m.

The last time these two teams got together, West Virginia actually knocked off Kansas in Morgantown. It was the third time in the last three seasons that WVU has beaten KU at home. So there’s some revenge at stake here. But there’s also the whole Big 12 title race, which West Virginia currently leads. If the Mountaineers win tonight, they’ll be up by two games on Kansas with the tie breaker and just seven games left to play. The Jayhawks regular season title streak could be over if that happens.

THIS ONE’S GOOD, TOO: No. 8 Michigan State at No. 18 Purdue, 7:00 p.m.

We think the Spartans are back to their early season form after wins over Maryland (at home), Northwestern, Rutgers and Michigan. If Michigan State really wants to prove something to the college basketball world, they will go into West Lafayette tonight and get a win. Denzel Valentine vs. Raphael Davis will be fun.

FIVE THINGS TO WATCH FOR

  1. Pitt will pay a visit to No. 12 Miami in a game the Panthers could really use a win in. Pitt hasn’t been the most consistent team in the country and without adding a few quality wins they could be looking at the bubble.
  2. Duquesne will be paying a visit to No. 19 Dayton, who moved into a tie for first place in the Atlantic 10 thanks to VCU’s loss on Saturday.
  3. Georgia is right there on the bubble, and they will have a chance to try and push themselves into a better spot when they play at No. 22 Kentucky tonight.
  4. Creighton probably has to win out to have a shot of making the NCAA tournament, and that includes tonight, when they host No. 5 Xavier.
  5. No. 7 Virginia will be hosting Virginia Tech, who picked off the Wahoos in Blacksburg earlier this year.

THE REST OF THE TOP 25

  • No. 1 Villanova at DePaul, 8:30 p.m.
  • No. 25 Wichita State at Drake, 8:00 p.m.

 

PLAYER OF THE YEAR POWER RANKINGS: Buddy Hield isn’t going anywhere

Oklahoma guard Buddy Hield (24) drives to the basket as LSU guard Antonio Blakeney (2) defends in the first half of an NCAA college basketball game in Baton Rouge, La., Saturday, Jan. 30, 2016. (AP Photo/Bill Feig)
Leave a comment

It’s Tuesday, which means that it is once again time for the NBC Sports Player of the Year Power Rankings.

And you’ll be shocked to find out that Oklahoma guard Buddy Hield is still No. 1 in those rankings. By a pretty wide margin.

The rest of the top 10?

They can be found here, at the CBT FaceBook page. Follow that page for the countdown: