KETTERING, Ohio — UK Coach John Calipari and a couple of assistants were treated to high-scoring performances from two of the program’s biggest recruits Saturday night.
UK signee Tyler Ulis and Class of 2015 target Luke Kennard both put up impressive numbers in front of a sold-out crowd at the Flyin’ To The Hoop Invitational.
Kennard went first, scoring 38 points and grabbing 10 rebounds in Franklin (Ohio) High’s 67-64 loss to HCYA (Texas), a squad led by five-star North Carolina signee Justin Jackson. Kennard’s shot wasn’t falling like it usually does — he was 12 of 32 from the floor — but the 6-foot-5 guard made 14 of 16 free-throw attempts.
Calipari and UK assistants Orlando Antigua and Kenny Payne arrived at the gym just before the start of Kennard’s game. It was the second time the UK coach had seen him play this season.
Mark Kennard, the player’s father, told the Herald-Leader earlier this week that his son has trimmed his list to seven schools: UK, Louisville, Duke, Ohio State, Michigan, North Carolina and Florida.
The elder Kennard said Saturday night that Luke hopes to start taking official visits next month and is still planning to make a college decision in May or June.
The family has already taken at least five unofficial visits to Kentucky since Calipari extended a scholarship offer in July. They have also visited Ohio State multiple times, including a trip for the Buckeyes’ game against Iowa last week.
Luke Kennard said after Saturday’s loss that he has not yet scheduled any of his five official visits, nor has he decided which of his seven finalists will receive the official visits. He did mention a possible trip to Duke in March.
Kennard grew up a Kentucky fan, but he said he doesn’t have any favorites at this stage in his recruitment.
Ulis — one of four UK signees in the Class of 2014 — led Marian Catholic (Ill.) to a 67-60 victory over Dayton Dunbar (Ohio) in Saturday’s final game. The 5-9 point guard scored 30 points to go along with five steals and three assists.
Ulis was 7-for-15 from the field and 15 of 18 on free throws. Though he was credited with only three assists, Ulis made several dazzling passes that led to scoring opportunities. Marian shot 40 percent from the field.