Hunter Sallis — one of the top playmakers in high school basketball — landed a scholarship offer from Kentucky on Friday night.
The UK offer was no surprise. Sallis — a 6-foot-5 prospect from Nebraska — had been on the Wildcats’ recruiting radar for a while, and Kentucky should vault into the top tier of his recruitment with Friday’s development. Rivals.com recently pegged North Carolina and Kansas as the top two contenders for Sallis, who is ranked by that recruiting service as the No. 11 overall player in the class of 2021.
He has the potential to end the 2021 cycle as the top-ranked point guard in the country. That spot is currently occupied by former Kentucky target Kennedy Chandler, who announced his commitment to Tennessee last week.
Sallis — at about five inches taller than Chandler — is more in the mold of the typical John Calipari point guard.
“The lazy comparison — but one that’s not entirely wrong — is Shai Gilgeous-Alexander,” Rivals.com national analyst Corey Evans told the Herald-Leader last week. “Just because of his size and his length due to a growth spurt, and his ball skills, and his wiggle. Hunter is definitely more athletic than Shai was. He’s more explosive, has more wiggle to his game. And he might be more of a scorer than Shai was.
“Not many have improved, if any in his class, at such a rate as Hunter Sallis. And he’s a very easygoing, fun-loving, high-character kid. And someone that I think is a no-brainer Kentucky kind of guy.”
As a junior, Sallis averaged 22.2 points, 4.6 rebounds and 3.8 assists per game to lead his high school to the Nebraska state title game.
He is now the only point guard in the 2021 class with a UK scholarship offer, and he joins shooting guard Jaden Hardy and small forward Patrick Baldwin Jr. as just the third player from that group with a confirmed UK offer.