Kai Sotto — a 7-foot-2 basketball star from the Philippines — now has a place in the 247Sports recruiting rankings for the class of 2020.
247Sports has ranked Sotto as the No. 50 player in the class, a couple of months following his first recruiting visit to Kentucky. Sotto has also visited Georgia, Georgia Tech and Auburn, and he continues to garner interest from other high-major programs.
Kentucky hosted Sotto for a recruiting visit in December, and he quickly emerged as an intriguing frontcourt target for next season as the Cats continue to plan for the possibility that they will lose Nick Richards, EJ Montgomery and graduate transfer Nate Sestina later this year.
Sotto is playing this high school season for The Skill Factory program in Atlanta after moving to the United States from the Philippines last year in hopes of training for a future NBA career. The talented center prospect doesn’t turn 18 years old until May, and he spent his Lexington trip chronicling his Kentucky visit on social media, seemingly impressed with the program’s facilities and personnel, including Coach John Calipari and lead recruiter Kenny Payne.
“The bar was set high,” Sotto tweeted after the visit. “Family first and always! Thank you! @KentuckyMBB and @UKCoachCalipari.”
247Sports national analyst Evan Daniels spoke to the Herald-Leader in more detail about Sotto and his recruitment back in December, calling him “a big-time prospect” for the 2020 class if he does indeed end up playing college basketball. Sotto’s father had told ESPN last year that college was not in the plans for his son, who is a major star back in the Philippines and could likely land immediate and lucrative endorsement deals if he instead turns pro after this season.
Sotto’s 247Sports ranking puts him eight spots behind Cliff Omoruyi, the only uncommitted 2020 center with a UK scholarship offer. Sotto is ranked No. 68 overall by ESPN.com and No. 70 nationally by Rivals.com.