Status: UK signee
Shooting guard | 6-4 | 180
Hometown: Corona, Calif.
Kentucky’s search for another guard from the class of 2017 led them to the West Coast, where John Calipari met with Baker a couple of weeks after the Cats’ season ended. He committed to UK a few days later.
The 6-foot-4 prospect was one of the top scorers on the Under Armour circuit last summer — averaging 16.8 points per game for Earl Watson Elite — and he also led that league with 41 made three-pointers. Baker knocked down a total of 94 three-pointers this past season, and he has a good-looking release with deep range. His outside shot should get him on the court early in his UK career.
Baker committed to play for home-state California midway through his junior season, but the departure of Coach Cuonzo Martin derailed those plans, and Baker quickly received a release from his letter of intent with the Bears.
Kentucky landed Baker’s commitment over interest from Duke, Utah, Arizona, Marquette, Maryland, Oregon, Arizona State and San Diego State.
Baker averaged 17.1 points, 4.1 assists, 3.5 rebounds and 1.8 steals as a senior in high school this past season.
Baker is not currently projected as a one-and-done player, according to the DraftExpress.com mock draft for 2018.
“Jemarl brings shooting to the table. I think that was what Kentucky’s recruiting class was missing. He’s a really good shooter off the catch, and he has good range and quick release. He’s exactly what Kentucky needed.”
— Scout.com analyst Evan Daniels