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Adam Zagoria covers basketball at all levels. He is the author of two books and an award-winning journalist whose articles have appeared in ESPN The Magazine, SLAM, Sheridan Hoops, Sports Illustrated, Basketball Times and in newspapers nationwide.
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Saturday / September 23.
  • Brandon Knight Not Going to Europe

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    Despite a completely bogus Internet “story” to the contrary, Kentucky recruit Brandon Knight will not play in Europe next season.

    “That’s not true,” Efrem Knight, Brandon’s father, said Thursday morning by phone. “All that is is people trying to mess up Kentucky’s recruiting.”

    The bogus story quoted Knight saying he would spend next season in Italy, following in Brandon Jennings’s footsteps, instead of going to Kentucky. Jennings skipped college at Arizona and played a year of pro ball in Italy before getting drafted by the Milwaukee Bucks, whom he helped lead into a Game 7 against the Atlanta Hawks in the first round of the NBA playoffs.

    Unlike Jennings, Knight has no grade issues and carries a 4.3 GPA. Knight, a senior at Fort Lauderdale (Fla.) Pine Crest, is the two-time Gatorade National Player of the Year and No. 1 player in the Class of 2010, according to Rivals.

    Told of the bogus report, Efrem Knight said, “It doesn’t take a rocket scientist to see through that. I assure you, he’s not going to Europe.”

    The 6-3 Knight did not sign a binding National Letter of Intent with Kentucky, but signed scholarship papers instead. He is therefore not bound to the school.

    Knight will join Queens guard Doron Lamb, Florida wing Stacey Poole and Turkish forward Enes Kanter in John Calipari’s 2010 recruiting haul.

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    Adam Zagoria is a New York Times contributor and Basketball Insider who covers basketball at all levels. He is the author of two books and is an award-winning journalist whose articles have appeared in ESPN The Magazine, SLAM, Sheridan Hoops, Sports Illustrated, Basketball Times and in newspapers nationwide. A veteran Ultimate Frisbee player, he has competed in numerous National and World Championships and, perhaps more importantly, his teams won the Westchester Summer League (WSL) championships in 2011 and 2013. He lives in Manhattan with his wife and children.

    • The trolls are working hard these days. Me included.

    • Even incoming recruits parents see that everybody is out to bring Kentucky down. It feels good to know that so many people all across the nation and internationallyh abroad spend time trying to brew up rumors that they feel will leave a negative light on Kentucky and affect recruiting. Keep bringing it, because this scenario only occurs when a Team is in the Spot Light and everybody else is jealous.

      • Wow, more and more arrogance from UK fans. Declaring yourselves the greatest, guaranteeing you will land this recruit and this recruit. Maybe most people don’ t like your fan base because of how arrogant and cocky you come across.

        No one is questioning your overall tradition, but until last year you guys have made little noise at all. I think most people are bagging UK because of Calipari NOT because they are jealous of your program. Outside of the UK fan base Calipari isn’t respected and could even be described as the most sleaziest coach in the game today. He sowed that seed, now its harvest time and he’s feeling the hate.

        • Oh and don’t bring up Arizona hasn’t done shit since 2005, because I already know that. But I’m also not on these boards declaring my school the greatest of all time and guaranteeing recruits and championships like many of the arrogant UK fans.

        • you really thinks its arrogance? even if its, why not? guaranteeing recruits, why not…look at the links below the article.

          enes kanter to kentucky
          marquis teague to kentucky
          doron lamb to kentucky
          michael gilchrist to kentucky
          brandon knight to kentucky

          do you really think its going to stop? at what point will you just accept it? what more do you need to see? i think its pretty safe to guarantee future elite recruits to uk, dont you think?

          • “I think its pretty safe to guarantee future elite recruits to uk, don’t you think?”

            I think that is the point we are hitting at here. It is safe to to guarantee future elite recruits to wherever Coach Cal is coaching, it has nothing to do with Kentucky. Did D. Cousins or Wall even consider UK before Cal? Xavier Henry wanted to play for Coach Cal, but decided he would rather not if it meant he had to play at UK. Gilhrist was always going to play for Cal no matter where he was. Kentucky has some great players coming in, but don’t for one second think it has anything to do with Kentucky. These players don’t care about UK’s history or past glory – this is the Coach Cal show plain and simple.

          • ^^THIS^^

            Lol you see the arrogance? Too funny!

          • They just don’t get it. But not all of the UK fans are like this.

            They just insist it’s all jealousy. No, its not. No one is here bashing UNC, UCLA, KU, Duke etc despite the fact all of those teams have more recent success than UK.

            And it’s not UK- its Calipari. I have nothing against UK.

          • i have no idea why it matters why a recruit chooses a school. some pick it because of tradition, some pick it because of the coach. in the end why does it matter?

            maybe it makes others feel better that recruits are picking uk because of cal. but i dont know why. seems silly to me.

            at the end of the day they are all wearing the uk uniform and for the most part loving their time in lexington.

        • ArizonaWildcat27-

          You must work for ZAG… Like I said a few days ago and yes, I am bringing back up politics…You have more to worry about in your state vs. worrying about what player coach Cal is bringing on next. Want to talk about some dirty folks—who is running your state government?

          Arizona will never be back in the elite picture of College Basketball…Maybe you should go out and find a dirty coach to help you all recruit? I didn’t see a lot of coaches trying to knock the door down a few years ago when the position opened. You had to settle for Miller and what has he done since he arrived?

          I realize it is tough being a Arizona Fan. I feel sorry for you to have to spend your time bashing other schools. I guess you could start pulling for the Suns…

          • Rbrbcat, why must you always resort to politics? I would think that as a UK fan you would have plenty of arguments without having to resort to irrelevant political talk. Seriously. Amazing history and tradition, amazing recruits, yet you want to discuss immigration.

            Also, do you think every Arizona fan is from Arizona? People from all over attend Arizona- California, East Coast, tons from Illinois. So the immigration argument is just so stupid.

            Root for the Suns? Is that a burn or just a bad joke? I would tell you to root for Kentucky’s pro team but you don’t have one! I wonder why

          • Actually I currently live in North Carolina rbcat, but thanks for the concern. And Michael is right; you are a complete dumbass for bringing up politics on a sports blog.

            And to set the record straight our coaching position never really opened up until this LAST YEAR. And yes Miller has done a great job with what he had in the short amount of time he had to do it. He had the second best late signing class right behind Calipari. Yes we missed the tournament, but we return everyone next year and will be better.

            And root for the Suns? Hell yeah! Always have! Up 2-0 against the Spurs right now. And we also have the Cardinals, so I have plenty to root for.

    • Right. Like all those rumors that boil around the programs at Duke, Syracuse, UNC, KU and Michigan State. Wait…… Somehow UK fan has developed little man syndrome. Compensating for not winning what matters by trying to play up winning what doesn’t. As soon as Rivals and Scout award the national championship, it is just a lot of farting in the wind.

      • I should say “until” rather than “as soon as”.

        • I don’t speak canuck. Perhaps you could teach me?

    • Yes John Wall did consider UK when Gillispie was here. If we had a good coach he would have taken us serious. He was interested enough to come on an official visit.

      Marquis was simi-interested until Rick P decided to practically buy him (and it didnt work) by giving his coach a job on his staff, scheduling a series of games in his hometown, and coaching his father.

      I understand you all hate Cal just like i hate coach K and ole’ Roy. They all cheat a little, because they find loop holes. And until they get rid of loop holes then shut up and deal with it. The only way to keep up in today’s game is to bend the rules. And if you thinl Williams, Self, K, or Miller are completely innocent then your as delusional as UK fans thinking that Cal is 100% clean.

      • I have no question all the coaches walk the grey line, but how many of those coaches you just mentioned got 2 separate programs Final 4 runs wiped completely off the record books?

        Calipari is on his own level of sleaze. Nuff said!

        • of course you leave out the details in each of those. but thats fine. its not like it matters.

        • I love how fans, such as yourself, that root for a team that had a season vacated (’99) and other run-ins, climb on a high horse and pass judgement on others. TALK ABOUT ARROGANCE!

          • Do you even know what happened in 99? Jason Terry TOOK money from several agents. Lute Olson and the University of Arizona had NO IDEA what was going on.

            Here is an article to educate you on the matter…

            http://www.arizonawildcats.com/genrel/062900aaa.html

            We had a player who needed money and was taken in by deceiving agents who helped him out. Hardly Lute or our programs fault. They had no control over what Terry did out on his own or were even aware of it.

            Which is why ALL the media STILL recognized our streak at 25 years even though our 1999 appearance has an asterisk next too it in the record books.

          • And for the record Jason Terry was a Senior when this all went down. It’s not like we are in question of using shady recruiting tactics on him.

          • Ha! Excuses, excuses, vacated means VACATED! Isn’t that what all you guys say to UK fans when they want to discuss the circumstances that led to infractions. I just love it when arrogant people, such as you, try to hold others to a higher standard than they are willing to be held to. BTW, the Terry situation sounds very similar to the Camby case don’t you think?

          • Zona, the point GasCan is making is that you, in one hand, leave out important details about a vacated season, (ie Coach Cal’s two vacated seasons) yet, you bring out all of the details when the season UofA vacated comes up. Hardly consistent. Perhaps not bashing Cal or UK would be in your best interest?

          • Arizona’s entire season was not vacated in 1999 just the tournament appearance. I find it hard to believe that Olson, Calipari or any coach has no idea when a player of their’s is receiving money while in college.

          • I can’t rip you for being fair. Fair point sir.

    • The idiot who “blogged” this is a Duke fan. How pathetic that you would go out and post these unfound accusations. One comment from above regarding X Henry. Playing at UK had nothing to do with why he chose Kansas. His mother admittedly put her foot down and forced him there.

      Another thought about why a kid chooses a school. Most times it is because of the coach. Besides UNC and the Jordan factor, most schools get players because of the coach. To think that UK fans don’t know this shows your level of understanding. We had Tubby Smith who couldn’t close a zip loc bag when it came to recruiting, so we know exactly how imprtant it is to have a great coach who can recruit.

    • Knew it was bogus from the start. I mean, why would this kid play overseas when he could get paid more to play at UK?

    • ArizonaWildcat27
      You sir are a hypocrite. You just got on Calapari for having 2 final fours vacated and you certainly know the circumstances of the Camby sitaution. He took money from an agent in which Cal had no control over, yet you want to criticize him and not criticize Lute Olsen. That is the biggest hypocratic move I’ve ever seen. And don’t act like you didn’t know the Camby sitaution, he too was about to leave college when it happened, it didn’t happen before he came to the school. So get off your high horse and admit your old Coach was a Sleeze if you’re going to call Cal a sleeze for the same CRAP

    • Zags probably should just write UK columns. Take a look at his non-UK columns – barely any comments. Every UK column has 20+ comments, some even exceeded 100 comments.

      Intense love or intense hate; not much in the middle it seems..

      • ChicagoUK you are right there is no middle ground. Kind of like Duke.

        Lots of interest on these boards I admit. Before though it was every Arizona article spurring the most comments.

        I would estimate 90 percent of the posters are UK, KU and Arizona fans. I’m surprised at the lack of UNC and Duke followers.

      • It’s great being part of the Greatest Tradition in College Basketball. Everyone want to join! Zag knows where the money is at. He puts in about five to six articles and they get 1-5 comments and he puts in UK article and we get 20-100 comments every time.

        Guys, don’t make any more comments about Coach Olson—he is not even in the same league of Cal, Coach K, Self, and Williams. When he was winning the rest of the PAC 10 was terrible. They got lucky for a couple of years. Arizona will be the NIT poster team for many years to come. They are jealous of the real “Wildcats” and that team is from Kentucky! Go Big Blue!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!
        Let’s see if we can get 50 more comments?????????????????????????????

        • Rbcat you are an embarrassment to UK.

          Of those the coaches you mentioned, only one does not have a title- Calipari.

          Olson- five final fours
          Cal- two or zero

          Olson- more tourney appearances, wins, elite eights, players drafted. And he built Arizona from scratch, unlike inheriting the tradition of UK (for the record, Olson turned down the UK job)

          Other than those facts you are right.

          Get a clue

          • I agree 100% with you Michael!

            Don’t forget Lute Olson is also in the Arizona Hall of Fame, the Pac10 Hall of Fame, and the basketball Hall of Fame.

    • From what Michael is saying,

      Adam Z, perhaps you should write articles mainly on KU, Zona, UK, and one every now and then for Seton Hall, Pitt, and ‘Cuse. I think you would make a killing. lol

    • C’mon guys, its not like he is the #1 recruit in the nation. LOL I believe he is #6 on the board.

    • I think that was Selby’s old position. But you are right.

    • I think that you see more comments on UK or Calipari articles right now because Cal is obviously hated universally, besides the state of Kentucky. More posters comment on those articles because they know that UK fans will see them and get agitated. They want reactions, and UK fans give it to them.

      It has very little to do with UK, and a lot to do with Calipari. Besides, I know TONS of cocky UK fans, and even though some do not represent all, it is nauseating.

      Cal will get good recruits, but he will miss on them, too.

      *stepping off the soapbox*

    • Well said, nobody paid any attention to uk pre-calipari. They sold their soul for an un-proven coach, thus losing all Tradition and History. He would receive the same treatment if he were recruiting (not coaching) for any other university.

      • Unproven? Didn’t Calipari make the national championship final a couple of years ago? Hasn’t he averaged over 30 wins a season these last 5 or 6 years (if you put an asterisk by Rose’s team)? Didn’t that average go up last year at Kentucky? And isn’t the Chicago media insisting that he is on the short list of top choices for the Chicago Bulls job? So tell us, featherphog, what is your definition of proven?

    • Any monkey can put 5 stellar players on the floor and just let them do what they do best. His coaching skills are limited. In 2008, who loses a 9 pt. lead with 2 mins left, doesn’t know how to call time out or foul? LOL Shoot, a student aid could of coached last years uk team to 30 wins. Too bad this years class is not near as talented, because last year was their best shot at winning it. And didn’t even make the final four. Hence, un-proven, having never even been to a final four appearance. Always a bridesmaid, but never a bride.

      • Any monkey can, you are right. It only takes one B. Self to turn top ten pick Henry into a late first rounder though.

        • I don’t think Mr. Self needs 1 or 2 players to put 30 points a night to win. Its called an all star cast with balanced scoring. Yet he still seems to get the job done with six straight conference titles and the nations longest home winning streak at 60. Such actions warrant pay increases, not winning the weak sec. I may give a certain coach some credit if he can win his conference consecutive years.

          • My rip wasn’t about winning games, it was about turning lottery picks into non-lottery picks. Great job avoiding the subject and spinning it. You sure do act a hell of a lot like a politician.

          • He turned Aldrich into a lottery pick

          • Fair point. But Aldrich wasn’t a one and done. Perhaps I should rephrase my comment say, “he can’t deal with one-and-dones well.” In honesty though, wasn’t Aldrich a top 30 player out of high-school? Meaning he was kind of expected to go in the draft eventually (maybe not first round, but go in the draft either way)?

          • Xavier was the only one and done he has ever had, kind of unfair to judge him by one guy. Xavier was a good player for us. I think he handled his only one and done fine. It’s not his fault he won’t be a lottery pick. i guarantee if Xavier would have stayed another year he would have been a top 5 pick.

            and i believe Aldrich was ranked at 30 in the final rankings, but wasn’t on anyones NBA radar screen as a freshman at all.

    • Serious question for UK fans- is UK after Eloy Vargas and is he even eligible in the SEC next season?

      • No, we are not after him at this time per any reports that I have read. His name popped up for like a day (perhaps 2), back in the Fall sometime. I don’t think we showed him much interest nor vice-versa if my memory serves me well.

    • Well at least we know one monkey out there is over paid for not accomplishing anything. LOL An over priced babysitter, one might say.

      • I hear bb guns are especially popular this time of year.

    • This site is turning into KU vs UK with AZ in there a bit too, but mostly KU vs UK and its getting out of hand. Who gives a sh^t if Cal pulls in the top 3 guys I dont. Look back at KUs 08 team which had no one and dones, you hear that none. Julian Wright was a 2 and done and sure it would of been cool to have him on that team but D Jackson emerged without him there and was a 4 year player. My point is if your team is winning year after year as is KU, who cares Self is obviously going to be just fine, he did just land the #1 guy in Selby. UK will stay good as long as Cal doen’t leave, as will KU, UNC, and DUKE. No disrespect to other schools because a few could be in that category too like a Mich St, but those 4 are blue bloods and that is not gonna change. All Im saying is Rock Chalk Jayhawk, and good luck to everyone else and we will see you on the court, Im worried about my team and my team only.

    • If Cali could not DO IT , with the last recruiting class…he will never win the NC.

      How about that…all you – uk fans.
      Great deal of truth to that.

      Lets not even talk about the choke job ,from Kansas Gangster U.
      Big time choke.
      LMAO.

    • Is Knight better than Wall?
      No, I do not think so.

      So, UK will be a worse team then last year.

      All the UK fans are not fools….YES, they were inquiries into going to Europe.
      The Money is there so, you can not ignore it.
      Was it a serious consideration?
      “Father” damage control is understandable.

      Keep it Real.
      Sonny.

    • Jessie you are an idiot to say that was our best chance. You realize we have Teague (drawing Jwall comparisons) and Gilchrist (drawing Lebron comparisons) are commited. and we are considered co leaders for Qmiller and Twroten. And i wonder why Chandler decommited from UL. and if you think every freshman will leave after this year your crazy, Kanter will go and Knight will go. Lamb is a real toss up.

    • and we may be worse than last year, but we will still be better than Arizona.

    • Does anyone have info on Damien Leonard? He is a 2011 kid out od S.C.? Oh and big nut I’m not sure if the Kentucky Wildcats will be better than the Arizona Wildcat but the best Wildcat team will probably be either the K-State or Nova Wildcats.

    • We will see big nut; I wouldn’t be so sure. And Knight and Kanter are your two best freshmen so if you lose only them (no guarantee) its still a big hit.

      I can’t argue the 2011 class is looking pretty amazing right now. But a lot can happen in the meantime.

      If Arizona lands Eloy Vargas they will be top 25 next year, in my biased opinion.