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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
This probably could have gone in UKFan's thread about Feb but it is PRETTY DARN EXCITING!

Also mentions Rondo as a good possibility...

Top 25 prospect, Oak Hill star consider Cats
RONDO WEIGHS UK AND LOUISVILLE
By Jerry Tipton
HERALD-LEADER STAFF WRITER

Although Kentucky already has three perimeter players set to join the team next year, two more highly regarded prospects may join the Cats.

Joe Crawford, a top 25 national prospect from Detroit, is close to committing to Kentucky, the player's father said yesterday. And UK, which seeks to replenish its backcourt this recruiting year, is in the running for the point guard at high school powerhouse Oak Hill Academy.

The latter is Rajon Rondo, who transferred to Oak Hill this year after playing for Eastern in Louisville in the past. Oak Hill Coach Steve Smith said Rondo has narrowed his choice to Kentucky or Louisville.

Rondo, who attended Kentucky's game at Tennessee on Tuesday, said he expected to commit within the next two weeks. "I'm not going to wait too long," he said.

Kentucky's interest in Rondo, which began about three weeks ago, got Crawford's attention. Joseph Crawford Sr. made his son's commitment to the Cats seem like a done deal.

"I wouldn't say Joe's in love with Kentucky, but he's infatuated with Kentucky," the prospect's father said. "I think it'd be perfect for Joe. He's leaning heavily toward Kentucky, put it that way. It's imminent."

Full Article

If BOTH of them come then someone (likely Sparks?) will have to stay off of scholarship OR an underclassman will have to transfer (this opens a loophole) to get around the 5/8 rule.

If both of these guys commit the only real question mark for next year will be the center position and the development of the 7 footers.

WOW!
 

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Wow. That's all I have to say. If we get both Joe and Rondo, and if they can both contribute next season, it won't be as bad as I thought.

Think of this: Patrick Sparks, Azubuike, Stockton (if he can be consistent and play as well as he did against UL, he'll be a great back-up), Chuck Hayes, a developed Lukasz, Ramel Bradley (assuming he can contribute), Adam Williams (ditto), HOPEFULLY a confident Josh Carrier. That's quite a perimeter attack I dare say, especially if Carrier decides he can make 3's in games (he's already showing that he's becoming more confident in games). Please Crawford, come to UK. :gopray:

As for the scholarship problem, I believe Sparks will stay as a walk-on. It's well known that it has long since been his dream to play at UK. Tubby gave him a deal that if he walked on this year, he'd get the scholarship next year. Well, since Sparks has already gone through the whole process, what's the harm in staying as a walk-on if it's to help the team you've always dreamed to play for?
 

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Ramel Bradley will contribute. I forget which guru it was, but one of them said Bradley was a lock for the McD's All-American team this year.

I don't see Sparks walking on for another year, after all he was promised a scholarship. Rondo, Carrier, or Stockton (in-staters) may get a Pell Grant (hardship scholarship from the University) to stay on board, or someone may transfer that we don't know about. If a player leaves and is on pace to graduate, there is an exemption to the 5/8 rule.

That would give us a lineup like this:

PG - Patrick Sparks (Not sure), Rajon Rondo (Top 30 now), Brandon Stockton (Top 100)
SG - Joe Crawford (Top 20), Ramel Bradley (Top 50), Josh Carrier (Top 150), Ravi Moss (Top 250)
SF - Kelenna Azubuike (Top 50), Bobby Perry (Top 100), Adam Williams (Top 150)
PF - Chuck Hayes (Top 50), Bernard Cote (Top 10 Foreign), Sheray Thomas (Top 100)
C - Lukasz Obrzut (Top 15 Foreign), Shagari Alleyne (Top 50)


That's a lineup, only question is center.
 

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Originally posted by <b>OriginalWildcat</b>!
Ramel Bradley will contribute. I forget which guru it was, but one of them said Bradley was a lock for the McD's All-American team this year.

I don't see Sparks walking on for another year, after all he was promised a scholarship. Rondo, Carrier, or Stockton (in-staters) may get a Pell Grant (hardship scholarship from the University) to stay on board, or someone may transfer that we don't know about. If a player leaves and is on pace to graduate, there is an exemption to the 5/8 rule.

That would give us a lineup like this:

PG - Patrick Sparks (Not sure), Rajon Rondo (Top 30 now), Brandon Stockton (Top 100)
SG - Joe Crawford (Top 20), Ramel Bradley (Top 50), Josh Carrier (Top 150), Ravi Moss (Top 250)
SF - Kelenna Azubuike (Top 50), Bobby Perry (Top 100), Adam Williams (Top 150)
PF - Chuck Hayes (Top 50), Bernard Cote (Top 10 Foreign), Sheray Thomas (Top 100)
C - Lukasz Obrzut (Top 15 Foreign), Shagari Alleyne (Top 50)


That's a lineup, only question is center.
I love the post and I gotta agree with it. I think Lukasz will be better developed by the end of this season, may start contributing more, and maybe good enough to earn the start next year, but only because our lack of big men yet again. However, if that's not the case and Bernard Cote continues to show his stuff and continues the improvement, we may see another 2 PF starting line-up again. With that said, OrigiCat, I have to hear your thoughts on UK's bench next season.
 

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Originally posted by <b>OriginalWildcat</b>!
Ramel Bradley will contribute. I forget which guru it was, but one of them said Bradley was a lock for the McD's All-American team this year.
I understand that he's a hell of a player, but I was never under the impression that he even had a chance at being an All-American. Speaking of that, when is the All-American game (high school)?
 

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Discussion Starter · #7 ·
Doesn't Bradley play behind Telfair or some other big name like that? That is likely why he has been slightly under the radar. According to one article I read he has come a LONG way this year and is moving up in the rankings.
 

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Bradley played the two guard on the Juice AAU team where Telfair played the point. Plays point guard in high school. Bret Bearup compares him to Gary Payton at this stage, and says Ramel will play for pay sometime in the future. His prep team plays both other prep schools at Junior College teams. His team played Iowa Hills CC (where Rashaad Carruth) plays, and Ramel outplayed him in every aspect, including points.
 

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Originally posted by <b>UKfan4Life</b>!
As for the scholarship problem, I believe Sparks will stay as a walk-on. It's well known that it has long since been his dream to play at UK. Tubby gave him a deal that if he walked on this year, he'd get the scholarship next year. Well, since Sparks has already gone through the whole process, what's the harm in staying as a walk-on if it's to help the team you've always dreamed to play for?
Well, my first problem with that is that means Tubby renegged on his deal with Sparks. I mean, would you honestly rather have money coming out of your own pocket to go to a school or have it paid for by someone else. Admittedly, Patrick has always done pretty decent grade-wise so an academic scholarship might not be out of the question for him though.
 

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Discussion Starter · #10 ·
Discussion on one of the insider boards I am on stated that Patrick mainly wanted a scholarship promise from Tubby so that he could be sure that Tubby was definitely wanting him as a key player on the team. Now that Patrick has developed a relationship with Tubby he now has trust that when Tubby says he will be the starting point guard next year that will be good enough. Also, Sparks could agree to pay his way the first semester of next year and then go on scholarship for the second half of his junior year and all of his sr. year and not be counted against the 5/8 rule. Anyway, the Sparks issue MAY be a moot point.

IF someone in good standing transfers off of the team that would free up a scholarship as well as make the 5/8 rule into a 5/9 rule according to the NCAA guidlines.

Also, there is a LOT of talk about one of the incoming freshman not taking up a scholarship next year - can't say anything more than that at this time (sorry, no details) but it has been mentioned and then coraborated by two different sources. Still, take it with a grain of salt.

Found out today that the UK staff is very confident that Crawford is going to come to UK. (YEEEEE HAAWWWW!!!) They also are about 90% sure that Rondo is also in the fold. Latest news on Morris is that he is a 60/40 UK lean. If Tubby can pull in all three then this would HAVE to be the #1 recruiting class for next year!

Scholarships could come from... The one remaining ride that is still available, a transfer off of the team, Sparks walking on again for one more semester (by the way, how much of a hero would he be if he did do that? talk about TEAM FIRST!), or one of the incoming freshman not ending up taking a scholarship. Anyway, there is one scholarship available for sure, and then three possible ways to come up with two more.
 

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Originally posted by <b>Topper1974</b>!


Well, my first problem with that is that means Tubby renegged on his deal with Sparks. I mean, would you honestly rather have money coming out of your own pocket to go to a school or have it paid for by someone else. Admittedly, Patrick has always done pretty decent grade-wise so an academic scholarship might not be out of the question for him though.
Well, I can't argue with what you pointed out, but let me put this into my perspective. I'm only 16 (I'll be 17 tommorrow!), so I have yet to go to college. Obviously, it's my dream to play for UK, and I highly doubt that'll happen. BUT, if I had Patrick Sparks' talent and I had just transferred from WKU (remember, it was also Sparks' dream to play for UK), I'd put the team first. I'd want what's best for the team I've wanted to play for since I was just a little kid. Yeah, Tubby would be breaking his promise, but I doubt he though he'd find himself in this position.

Discussion on one of the insider boards I am on stated that Patrick mainly wanted a scholarship promise from Tubby so that he could be sure that Tubby was definitely wanting him as a key player on the team. Now that Patrick has developed a relationship with Tubby he now has trust that when Tubby says he will be the starting point guard next year that will be good enough. Also, Sparks could agree to pay his way the first semester of next year and then go on scholarship for the second half of his junior year and all of his sr. year and not be counted against the 5/8 rule. Anyway, the Sparks issue MAY be a moot point.

IF someone in good standing transfers off of the team that would free up a scholarship as well as make the 5/8 rule into a 5/9 rule according to the NCAA guidlines.

Also, there is a LOT of talk about one of the incoming freshman not taking up a scholarship next year - can't say anything more than that at this time (sorry, no details) but it has been mentioned and then coraborated by two different sources. Still, take it with a grain of salt.

Found out today that the UK staff is very confident that Crawford is going to come to UK. (YEEEEE HAAWWWW!!!) They also are about 90% sure that Rondo is also in the fold. Latest news on Morris is that he is a 60/40 UK lean. If Tubby can pull in all three then this would HAVE to be the #1 recruiting class for next year!

Scholarships could come from... The one remaining ride that is still available, a transfer off of the team, Sparks walking on again for one more semester (by the way, how much of a hero would he be if he did do that? talk about TEAM FIRST!), or one of the incoming freshman not ending up taking a scholarship. Anyway, there is one scholarship available for sure, and then three possible ways to come up with two more.
Thanks for the birthday present, UKBlue. :bsmile:
 

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Look at this. The NCAA might end up abolishing the 5/8 rule.

Since the NCAA might abolish that limitation, Kentucky continues to recruit at least three high-profile prospects: shooting guard Joe Crawford, point guard Rajon Rondo and big man Randolph Morris. UK Coach Tubby Smith also planned to watch Mason County star Chris Lofton against Lexington Catholic at Memorial Coliseum last night.

"That's why I feel we can get two (more signees)," Smith said. "Why we have more than one (in mind) because I think that rule will be rescinded."

The "5/8" rule limits men's basketball programs to adding no more than five recruits in any one year and no more than eight in any two-year period. UK added four players this year -- Bobby Perry, Sheray Thomas, Shagari Alleyne and Lukasz Obrzut. The Cats have three more new players set to join the team next fall -- incoming freshmen Ramel Bradley and Adam Williams, plus transfer Patrick Sparks counts as a third player receiving a scholarship for the first time.

At the NCAA Convention in Nashville, the Atlantic Coast, Ohio Valley and Big South conferences presented a proposal to abolish the "5/8" rule. The NCAA's Management Council gave its "initial approval," which amounted to an OK to have Division I schools consider such an abolishment.



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Discussion Starter · #13 ·
Tubby mentioned that several times in the press conference. EVERYONE hates the 5/8 rule and Tubby seemed pretty sure that it would be gone soon.
 

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Originally posted by <b>UKBlueInMyBlood</b>!
Tubby mentioned that several times in the press conference. EVERYONE hates the 5/8 rule and Tubby seemed pretty sure that it would be gone soon.
But signing day is soon, isn't it? So wouldn't they have to abolish it within the next few days or weeks for it to help us out?
 

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Discussion Starter · #15 ·
Yep. Tubby said that they are going to address that "this month". If he means "this month" as in January then they will have to be deciding within the next week. If he meant within a month (from now) then it would be more like 4 weeks.
 
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