clock menu more-arrow no yes mobile

Filed under:

Kentucky Goes 0-5 On Big Men Recruits (And Transfers)

Life is ever interesting

HIGH SCHOOL BASKETBALL: JUN 07 Pangos All-American Camp
 LAS VEGAS, NV - JUNE 07: Adem Bona looks on during the Pangos All-American Camp on June 7, 2021 at the Tarkanian Basketball Academy in Las Vegas, NV.
Photo by Brian Rothmuller/Icon Sportswire via Getty Images

Kentucky recruiting has been pretty solid this year and for a while it looked like Kentucky might have the top class in the country. They’ll still have one of the best, possibly still the best, but so far it’s bereft of big men.

On Monday, Adem Bona continued a recent trend and turned down Kentucky for a rival, in this case, UCLA.

So look who UK has missed lately:

  • Kofi Cockburn. He entered the transfer portal and apparently was willing to come to Lexington but Kentucky supposedly was not interested. One possible reason for turning him down? Other solid young big men including...
  • Jalen Duren, who was seen as a lock for Kentucky and Calipari apparently preferred him to Cockburn. He’s at Memphis.
  • Kyle Filipowski. UK got in late but never really threatened. He’s Duke-bound.
  • Dereck Lively was seen as a near-certain Kentucky commit. He also chose Duke. But Kentucky focused on him above Adem Bona, giving UCLA an opening.

That’s five big men who for various reasons aren’t at Kentucky. It’s a most interesting development, particularly considering Calipari’s built his UK reputation on sending big men to the NBA.