UK rebuilds roster with elite talent
Behind the strength of Kentucky's recruiting, the SEC is nipping at the heels of the ACC as the top recruiting conference in the country. Five SEC teams are ranked nationally, with Kentucky holding the No. 1 spot in the country. After the early signing period, the Wildcats had only one signee. But now that the spring signing period has passed, Kentucky has six - and four of those are five-star prospects. Enes Kanter is a great scorer and rebounder. Brandon Knight is one of the top point guards in the class. Terrence Jones is a versatile lefty who should fit right into UK's "dribble drive" offensive scheme. And Doron Lamb is a shooting guard with size and an outstanding mid-range game. Tennessee holds the No. 2 spot in the conference and has a top-10 class nationally; it's headed by elite power forward Tobias Harris. At No. 3 in the SEC, Florida has five-star big man Patric Young and four-star wing player Casey Prather. Darrin Horn has put together an impressive five-man class at South Carolina, which comes in at No. 4 in the league. LSU is the last nationally ranked SEC squad, and its class is headlined by four-star prospect Matt Derenbecker.
Best recruiting battle
It's not easy to land an elite prospect who visits the seven schools on his list. But Tennessee fought the good fight and outlasted Georgia Tech, Kentucky, Louisville, Maryland, Syracuse and West Virginia to land Tobias Harris on the last day of the early signing period.
Signing Harris, the No. 5 prospect nationally, catapulted Tennessee to a top-10 class nationally.
Kentucky has a deep and ultra-talented class, while South Carolina and LSU cracked the national rankings thanks to the depth of their classes. South Carolina has a five-man class headlined by the four-star duo of point guard Bruce Ellington and athletic power forward Damontre Harris.
As with second-year coach Darrin Horn at South Carolina, second-year man Trent Johnson lured a top-25 national recruiting class to LSU. The Tigers' four-man class is led by jack-of-all-trades wing player Matt Derenbecker and dynamic long-range scorer Andre Stringer.