From Texas back to Kentucky, John Calipari sure has earned his frequent flyer miles today.
The Kentucky Men’s Basketball head coach, along with assistant Jai Lucas, were back in Richardson, TX, on Thursday morning to check in on five-star class of 2022 combo guard Cason Wallace. But that wasn’t his only stop of a long day. A source tells KSR that Calipari then traveled back to Kentucky where he went and visited four-star class of 2023 shooting guard Reed Sheppard in Laurel County. Virginia head coach Tony Bennett was also in to see Sheppard on Thursday.
In-person contact between coaches and recruits has only been open for a week now, but the Kentucky coaching staff has made several stops all across the country. Thursday was actually the second time that UK went to go see Wallace (who could very well become a Wildcat in the near future). The staff has also visited the likes of uncommitted prospects Dereck Lively II and Adem Bona along with a giant handful of class of 2023 recruits.
Sheppard is one of the more important players from that group of high school juniors. The son of two former UK athletes who grew up a fan of the Wildcats, he’s a must-get in the eyes of the Big Blue Nation. Louisville was in to see Sheppard last week.
Recently, the North Laurel High School product was bumped up to five-star status by the fine people over at Rivals and he’s now ranked as the 21st best player in his class. Sheppard exploded onto the scene over the summer for his AAU team, Midwest Basketball Club, earning offers from the likes of Kentucky, Virginia, Ohio State, Indiana, Louisville, and Texas A&M all since mid-June.
Since the offer from Kentucky came in, Sheppard has been viewed as a Kentucky lean due to his wide connections to the program. Calipari believes Sheppard has the talent to play in Lexington and Cal continues to recruit him as such. Virginia is a team that always seems to pop up whenever Sheppard’s name is mentioned though, so keep an eye out for the Cavaliers moving forward.