UK’s scholarship situation for the 2013-14 season

 Posted by at 11:35 AM on March 10, 2013
Mar 102013
Andrew Harrison is one player that will definitely be on Kentucky

Andrew Harrison is one player that will definitely be on Kentucky’s roster for the 2013-14 season.
Photo: Houston Chronicle

There’s been a lot of talk over the past few days about UK’s scholarship numbers for next season, specifically how many spots are left as John Calipari continues to pursue Andrew Wiggins, Julius Randle, Aaron Gordon and possibly Dominique Hawkins.

Here’s a breakdown of where things stand. The magic number is 13, which is how many scholarship players UK can have next season:

Andrew Harrison – Incoming freshman
Aaron Harrison – Incoming freshman
Dakari Johnson – Incoming freshman
Marcus Lee – Incoming freshman
Derek Willis – Incoming freshman
James Young – Incoming freshman
Kyle Wiltjer – Not projected as NBA draft pick

Aaron Gordon – Undecided recruit
Julius Randle – Undecided recruit
Andrew Wiggins – Undecided recruit
Note: UK’s best scenario here is to get two out of three, with those two likely being Wiggins and Randle. No one thinks UK will land all three, hence the two scholarships on hold.

So that’s 9 of 13 scholarships accounted for, at least for the time being. Moving on …

Nerlens Noel – Projected NBA pick
Archie Goodwin – Projected NBA pick
Willie Cauley-Stein – Projected NBA pick
Alex Poythress – Projected NBA pick
Ryan Harrow – ???
Jon Hood – On track to graduate
Jarrod Polson – On track to graduate

To have one more available scholarship for 2013-14 (which at this point could go to Hawkins), four of the seven players above would have to leave UK.

Noel and Goodwin are considered locks to declare for the draft. Cauley-Stein and Poythress could join them. All four freshmen are pegged as Top 20 draft picks by ESPN’s Chad Ford.

Harrow will undoubtedly have to take a smaller role on next season’s team and could look to continue his career elsewhere. Hood and Polson — assuming they do graduate — would have to enroll in post-graduate classes at UK to be eligible to play. Also, Polson joined the team as a walk-on with the understanding that a scholarship might not be available every year.

Add all of that up, and it seems likely that at least four (probably more) from this group won’t be on the team next season. If four players from this group do return (or three players return and Calipari wants to keep a scholarship open for a possible graduate student transfer like Julius Mays), UK could still offer Hawkins a preferred walk-on spot.

But with other big schools coming at Hawkins with scholarships, would he take it?

We’ll just have to wait and see.


  16 Responses to “UK’s scholarship situation for the 2013-14 season”

  1. Hawkins said there was no way he’s taking a walk on spot. Preferred or not.

  2. The NCAA rule is a player has 5 years after graduating from HS to use up his 4 years of elgibility. Transfers must normally sit out a year before playing again. Ryan Harrow has already transfered once. If he transfers again, he will lose a year of elgibility. it think it’s possible, but unlikely that he transfers from Kentucky.

  3. I don’t see a problem: 1. Andrew Harrison – Incoming freshman, 2. Aaron Harrison – Incoming freshman, 3. Johnson – Incoming freshman, 4. Lee – Incoming freshman, 5. Willis – Incoming freshman, 6. Young – Incoming freshman, 7. Randle – incoming freshman, 8. Wiggins – incoming freshman, 9. Hawkins, incoming freshman, 10. Wiltjer – junior, 11. Harrow-junior, 12. Hood – graduate student, 13. Polson – graduate student. This would be the best recruiting class in the history of college basketball. 2014 would be the problem because 7 of the freshman and 3 or 4 upperclassmen would go. I would not be surprised to see Harrow go to Europe after this season but if he returns, UK will have some tough practices.

  4. If I were Jon Hood and Jarrod Polson, I would begin my coaching career as graduate assistants to Travis Ford at Oklahoma State.

  5. I think a lot of people are taking a couple of things for granted and they are that Wiggins and Randle choose UK. The odds of getting both of them is slim and none and getting one or the other is possible but far from a sure thing. I would like nothing better than to see 1 or both come to UK but it just isnt going to happen. As far as Harrow goes he could go to a Division ll school and play right away. I cant see him going to Europe to play ball after his soph year. There wont be a shortage of scholarships for the class of 2013-14. I really hope that Hawkins is offered b/c we need a kid like him on next years team. He doesnt give up or ever admit defeat and knows there is always a way to win.

  6. Jon Hood and Jarrod Polson are considered Juniors this year. They will be seniors next year. Why would they have to enroll in post-grad classes? They arent going anywhere. Polson came in with Brandon Knight & Co., so he is still only a junior.

  7. Hi Sam –

    If Hood and Polson graduate this spring, which Cal says they plan to do, they would have to take more classes next season if they want to play on the team. You have to be enrolled at UK with a full credit load to be a member of the basketball team.


  8. Unless the NBA has totally lost their minds there’s no way, I’m giving up a draft choice for Alex, Archie or Harrow. Have you been watching these guys this past season????

    They all badly need another year of actually learning how to play well and give a good effort night in and night out.

    Two of those three guys are returning. And don’t think the possibility isn’t there for Noel to return if his rehab doesn’t go as quickly as needed.

    Mark Liptak

  9. Couldn’t Polson take an academic scholarship for grad school and still play? That would open one up for Wilkins

  10. I could be wrong, but I thought the rule on Hood was that he counted as 1 of our 13 last year when he didn’t play … but, next year, even if Hood stays he would not count as 1 of our 13.

  11. NBA: Noel and Goodwin. Scholarships: Andrew Harrison, Aaron Harrison, Young, Lee, Johnson, ( Wiggins and Randle– one maybe, both not likely), WCS, Poythress, Witjer, Harrow, Hood, Hawkins. That’s 13 if Poulson becomes a walk-on again and Willis is Redshirted. I don;t see a problem unless Noel and Goodwin want to stay at UK.

  12. Hawkins deserves more than a walk on spot. The kid is a complete player. Just hope schools that have offered don’t decide to use scholarship they’ve offered him because his dream school is holding out

  13. As Tom already posted,college players are allowed 5 years to complete 4 years of eligibility. Jon Hood will have completed 4 years of college, at the end of this semester,and UK/Sandy Bell, will have to apply for,and receive, a Medical Redshirt,for him to be eligible to play next season.
    Since technically he’s a Sr, but didn’t participate in the Sr night activity,I’d suppose that’s still under consideration.
    Also I have heard….Ryan Harrow can graduate before the fall semester if he decides to take the right course load. If that’s true,then he could transfer,into a graduate program At another school …..the same route that Mays took to UK.
    May or may not be true,about Harrow…just something I heard,weeks ago .

  14. What about Beckham? Is he a walk-on?

  15. Beckham is a senior this season.

  16. This is after the Robert Morris game. Cal took them up there to play a game he didn’t care about in an obscure bandbox. That humiliation was what that team deserved for their disgraceful play. Here who needs to stay and who should go:

    Stay: Hood,Polson and Caley-Stein and Noel in the unlikely event he does not go pro.

    Go: Harrow-graduate at the end of the summer and transfer

    Wiltcher, transfer

    Goodwin- transfer or go pro

    Poythress- transfer or go pro

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