Kentucky 2014 Class
Just wondering what you think of this years upcoming class, I'm not sure about the point guard because I've never seen him play
1. Trey Lyles
2. Tyler Ulis
3. Karl Towns
4. Devin Booker
It's an interesting class for Kentucky. Not very typical because it's lacking in high end tools and athleticism. It's high in skill and IQ though. It looks more like a Duke class. I'm sure they all went there thinking they have 1 and done potential with the exception of maybe Ulis, but the only one I think is a probable one and done talent is Towns, who's become somewhat of a dakhorse sleeper in the '14 class due to his lack of participation in the AAU circuit. Lyles possibly because his skill level is advanced, but I think he might need a yr to get used to the athleticism and to improve his body.
Ulis looks like a core guy. Someone who'll be in the program for 3-4 yrs, but unlike a lot of Kentucky PGs, he'll step onto campus ready to run an offense well. They might be able to run more complicated sets with him on the floor as opposed to their usual stuff. He's a smart, skilled and clever kid with leadership skills. He might have to worry about Cal recruiting over him which I think will eventually happen, which would likely cause him to transfer.
Lyles is skilled but I think he needs to work on his body. He's put on some bad weight recently, is not a great athlete but he's got a polished post and face up game. Maybe he could be a Boozer type eventually if he can turn some of that excess into muscle and strength. His skill is definitely more intriguing than his tools for his position. His overall phsyical package is below average for an NBA PF.
Booker's billed as a pure shooter, but his %'s in HS and AAU don't exactly say he's a pure shooter, more of a good one. Maybe that had to do with the fact that he had to create a lot of his own shots on his teams. Again, not a great athlete, but smooth and smart with a solid floor game, able to handle using ball screens.
Although Towns is not a great athlete, his upside is immense because of his level of skill for a 7'er. He's big, has great length but has the skills of a guard. He's known for his shooting but he's a tremendous passer and can even handle the rock some at his size. How good he'll be will depend on how his post game develops because I don't think he has the mobility to be effective as a perimeter based big, outside of shooting and passing.
Overall, it's a really good class obviously. Atypical for Kentucky class because of the amount of bball IQ and maturity. I don't think this class is done either. They're late on Jonah Bolden, but if they poach him they could retake the #1 class ranking again over Duke. Bolden is a HUGE sleeper and has one of the higher ceilings in the class IMO. He's a 4 star now, but could easily be a 5 star, top 15 recruit by the end of the school yr.
Ulis might be recruited over. good point, i dont see him as great. He'll be a good 4 year player
I also expect that there will be a couple of Kentucky guys who stay on for another year and join this incoming 2014 class. It's hard to say who wil be the ones to stay, as they all would get drafted in the first round. But I think Dakari Johnson, Marcus Lee and Poythress could all benefit by staying another year.
Do you guys think Ulis will struggle on that level? I'm of the mindset that he will actually play well.
Also I kind of see Booker as a Doron Lamb kind of player with a little more size.
I don't think he'll struggle. He's too smart and skilled. He might be small, but he's got a very mature game. Kentucky's system really isn't very PG friendly system (the offense starts on the wing and they don't run too many pro-style sets) but I think Ulis will be fine because he can actually shoot, can get to wherever he wants to with his handle, has a high IQ and he knows how to run offense already. Mentally, he's more advanced than most Kentucky PGs. I can't think of a recent UK PG under Cal who's as smart as Ulis is at the same stage.