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REPORT: Kentucky Basketball to host five transfer portal star players



Kentucky Basketball to host five transfer portal star players

It’s a big recruiting weekend for Kentucky, so here’s a breakdown of the visitors on campus.

Kentucky basketball is gearing up for one of its busiest recruiting weekends in recent memory, with a slew of top prospects on campus.

Mark Pope enters this weekend with only three players on his roster for next season, one of whom has previously played in college.

So, to say this is a big weekend is an understatement.

Here’s a breakdown of the prospects on campus this weekend, along with some key information about each.

Deivon Smith

Deivon Smith - Men's Basketball - University of Utah Athletics

Smith has emerged as a major target for Kentucky in recent days, having entered the transfer portal over the weekend.

The Utah guard had five triple-doubles last season and averaged 13.3 points, 6.7 rebounds, and 7.1 assists per game.

What makes Smith such an attractive potential addition? His ability to pass the ball and make this entirely new roster work. He led the Pac-12 in assists and finished sixth in the NCAA. His assist rate was 43.2 percent, ranking second in the NCAA. He had a 2:84 assist-to-turnover ratio.

While he shot 40.8 percent from three, he is a low-volume three-point shooter, attempting only 2.8 per game.

Smith would thrive in Mark Pope’s fast-paced, guard-heavy offense, and he would be the driving force on both ends of the court.

Andrej Stojakovic

Andrej Stojakovic, son of NBA champion Peja Stojakovic, commits to Stanford  - Tar Heel Times - 11/8/2022

Andrej Stojakovic has been a bit under the radar for the past week. The Stanford transfer is coming off an inconsistent freshman season but is an extremely talented shooter.

The former McDonald’s All-American averaged 7.8 points and 3.2 rebounds per game last year. He shot only 32.7 percent from three, but he did make 34 threes on the year.

On Thursday, it was revealed that the 6-foot-7 wing was down to three programs: Kentucky, North Carolina, and California.

Mark Pope’s offense, which ranked third in the country in made 3s last year and second in attempted 3s, would be ideal for a shooter looking to get back on track. If he is paired with some of Kentucky’s ball-dominant guards, his ability to create will be significantly aided.

Stojakovic is the son of former NBA star Peja Stojakovic.

Aidan Mahaney

Alabama Basketball reaches out to Saint Mary's transfer guard Aidan Mahaney  - Yahoo Sports

With his versatility across the board, he could be the most intriguing potential option for Kentucky.

Mahaney is a two-time All-WCC selection, having averaged 13.9 points in each of his first two seasons at St. Mary’s.

This year, he shot 35.5 percent from three and has a career average of 37.5 percent with 2.3 made threes per game.

Mahaney is an excellent player both on and off the ball. Last season, he had a 56 percent effective field goal rate on catch-and-shoot opportunities and was in the 82nd percentile for spot-up shots, scoring 1.13 points per possession.

This year, he had seven 20-point games and made at least one three-pointer in 30 of 34 games.

Mahaney has good size off the ball at 6-foot-4 and 190-pounds.

Andrew Carr

Andrew Carr - Men's Basketball - Wake Forest University Athletics

While the other options are well-known, Carr is likely unknown to the majority of Kentucky fans.

The 6-foot-9 forward averaged 13.5 points, 6.8 rebounds, and 37.1 percent from three, making him a viable option as a stretch four.

He attempted 2.8 three-pointers per game and made at least one in 22 games. His ability to stretch the floor and spread the defense would be critical, especially with Amari Williams as the only paint presence.

Carr averaged 12.1 points, 6.4 rebounds, and shot 50.9 percent from the field over two seasons at Wake Forest. He played his first two years at Delaware, averaging 9.4 points, 4.7 rebounds, and 52.9 percent from the field.

While Carr isn’t the most’sexy’ name, he may be the best fit for Williams among the big names Mark Pope is targeting.

He has a busy few days ahead of him, so Kentucky must make sure he gets everything he wants.

Otega Oweh

Otega Oweh - 2023-24 - Men's Basketball - University of Oklahoma

Everyone was caught off guard when Oweh arrived. After a few days of silence about his recruitment, it was revealed on Thursday that he was already in Lexington.

Oweh, a 6-foot-5, 215-pound scoring wing, is tough and athletic. Oweh averaged 11.4 points, 3.8 rebounds, and shot 37.7 percent from three this season at Oklahoma.

While he shot a healthy percentage from three, he is a slasher at heart, attempting 61 percent of his field goals at the rim. He uses his frame to get to the rim at will, attempting nearly four times per game, but only shooting 64.3 percent.

When Oweh isn’t attacking the rim, he excels as a spot-up shooter, finishing in the 87th percentile in catch and shoot opportunities last season.

Oweh’s athleticism and toughness on the wing would be an excellent fit for both ends of the court.

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