Stanley Johnson announced his commitment to Arizona on Friday, a development that might have moved Huntington Prep’s Montaque Gill-Caesar to the No. 1 spot on Kentucky’s Class of 2014 wishlist.
Trouble is, Gill-Caesar’s not in the Class of 2014.
The 6-foot-6 small forward acknowledged Friday that he’s considering reclassifying from his current designation as a 2015 recruit, but he said he has not made that decision yet and has no timetable for doing so.
Gill-Caesar and Huntington Prep Coach Rob Fulford confirmed that the star player is a senior academically and will have all of the necessary credits to reclassify to 2014 without taking any extra classes if that’s what he chooses to do.
Kentucky is among several schools hoping to land him as a 2014 commitment. Kansas and Michigan State have also ramped up interest in recent weeks, and Ohio State, Illinois and West Virginia are among the other schools involved.
Gill-Caesar — everyone calls him “Teki” — visited UK last weekend, just his second true recruiting trip after a visit to West Virginia for midnight madness last month. Fulford accompanied his player on the trip to Lexington, where they met with Calipari and his staff.
Fulford said they didn’t specifically discuss whether Gill-Caesar has a UK scholarship offer.
“Coach Cal, obviously, he knows he’s going to lose a majority of his team this year,” Fulford said. “He needs players, and he needs players who can come in and play. … He’s got to have elite guys and he made sure that Teki knew that.
“I’m not big on, ‘Does he have an offer or not?’ But from my understanding, just in conversation, if Teki wanted to go to Kentucky, he can go to Kentucky.”
Calipari told reporters Friday that he was looking to add a couple more players to his 2014 recruiting class, which currently includes a prospect at every position except for small forward. The only player in the senior class with a UK scholarship offer is Texas center Myles Turner, and there’s no one else in the class that has drawn significant interest from the Wildcats coaching staff.
Scout.com’s Evan Daniels agreed that Gill-Caesar could be considered UK’s No. 1 target.
“Kentucky needs at least two more perimeter players in the 2014 class, so I’m sure they’re hoping he reclassifies,” Daniels told the Herald-Leader. “They’re not really in on any of the guys who are available. And they need some more depth at the perimeter.
“He’s definitely their No. 1 option because they’re not recruiting any of these other (perimeter) guys.”
Scout.com ranks Gill-Caesar as the No. 18 overall prospect in the junior class. If he reclassifies, he would be considered the No. 22 prospect in the Class of 2014.
Daniels said he thinks Gill-Caesar will be more than ready to play college basketball next season.
“Hey, if Kentucky and Michigan State and these other schools are recruiting you for the 2014 class, why wait?” he said.
–Check Kentucky.com on Saturday for a feature story on Montaque Gill-Caesar–