It’s been a busy weekend for the basketball recruits in Lexington these past couple of days.
John Calipari had his biggest group of prospects on campus in quite some time, and the UK coach made sure to deliver a good show.
This weekend, the emphasis was on the older guys.
UK commitment Karl Towns Jr. was joined by uncommitted recruits Trey Lyles, Stanley Johnson and James Blackmon Jr. at UK’s practice Friday. That practice was also attended by the entire New Orleans Pelicans roster, including former UK stars Anthony Davis and Darius Miller.
The four Class of 2014 prospects hit the Joe Craft Center court for a little shootaround after practice.
A few hours later, it was time for Big Blue Madness.
All of the visiting recruits gathered in the Rupp Arena tunnel nearest UK’s 2012 national championship banner and watched the women’s team scrimmage from there. Once that portion of Madness ended, Blackmon led the recruits — now joined by UK commit Tyler Ulis — and their family members across the Rupp Arena sideline to their seats near the stage where Calipari gave his “state of the program” speech.
Lyles tweeted Saturday that the UK recruits were headed back to watch the team practice that day. Later that night, they were seen sitting next to UK’s current players at the Wizards-Pelicans game in Rupp Arena.
At one point Saturday, Towns did a little recruiting of his own. The 7-footer from New Jersey tweeted out a photo of Blackmon with the message: “(Shout out) to my bro @jblackmon2 for doing it big this summer. Hopefully see him in a UK jersey beside me.”
Blackmon, Lyles and Johnson all tweeted their appreciation for UK fans at various points during the weekend.
Class of 2016 standouts Harry Giles and Jayson Tatum were among the other highly touted recruits in Lexington. Both players were at UK’s practice Friday and both attended Big Blue Madness later that night. Like the seniors, both Giles and Tatum tweeted that they had a “great time” on the visit.
Giles is widely considered to be the No. 1 overall player in the sophomore class. Tatum is ranked as a top-five prospect in that class.
Taylor County point guard Quentin Goodin — another highly touted 2016 prospect — was also in Rupp Arena on Friday night.
“Kentucky is too real,” he tweeted. “I liked Big Blue Madness. Enjoyed my time UK! #BBN”
Tweet of the weekend: Stanley Johnson — a couple of hours after Big Blue Madness — asks LeBron James for some advice …
@KingJames where should I go to college I need help??
— Stanley Johnson (@StanMan_41) October 19, 2013