NCAA Basketball

Another No. 1 Recruiting Class for Calipari and Kentucky

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The top recruits just keep coming for the University of Kentucky basketball team. On Wednesday, John Calipari announced the Letter-of-Intent signings of Anthony Davis, Marquis Teague, Michael Gilchrist and Kyle Wiltjer. This class would be the third strait No. 1 overall class by Calipari and would make him 3-for-3 at Kentucky. Not bad.

Here’s what Calipari had to say about the class, via Cat Scratches.

Anthony Davis (6-10, forward, Chicago, IL)

Is in his senior year at Perspectives Charter in Chicago, where, as a junior, he averaged 30 points and 12 rebounds. ranks Davis as the top overall prospect in the country. Davis is currently ranked as the best power forward in the country and second overall by ESPN Recruiting and ranks him the second best power forward and sixth overall.

“Anthony Davis has always loved Kentucky,” Calipari said. “He’s 6-10, but he plays like a guard. He has unbelievable skills, passing and shooting and gives us an extraordinary shot-blocking presence.”

Marquis Teague (6-2, guard, Indianapolis, IN)

Is a senior at Pike High School. Teague averaged 16.3 points and 4.6 assists as a junior at Pike and played alongside Gilchrist on the USA U-17 National team. He averaged 7.0 points and 6.0 assists in the FIBA U17 World Championships, helping lead Team USA to the gold medal. ranks Teague as the top point guard in the country and second overall, while ESPN Recruiting and both rank him the top point guard in the country and the sixth best overall.

“Marquis is not just quick, but quick with the ball,” Calipari said. “He also has an unbelievably fierce desire to win. He played on the U17 team with Michael (Gilchrist) and when they stepped into the game together, games changed.”

Michael Gilchrist (6-7, forward, Somerdale, NJ)

Is in his senior year at St. Patrick High School. As a junior, Gilchrist averaged 16.4 points, 11.5 rebounds and three blocks per game. Playing alongside fellow Wildcat signee Marquis Teague on the USA U17 national team, Gilchrist averaged 14.8 points and 7.2 rebounds at the FIBA U17 World Championships, helping lead Team USA to the gold medal. ESPN Recruiting, and all rank Gilchrist the No. 1 small forward in the country. ESPN Recruiting and rank him third overall in the Class of 2011 and ranks him fifth overall.

“When you look up the definition of ‘warrior’ in the dictionary, there is a picture of Michael there,” said Calipari. “No one plays harder or is more competitive. He has a tremendous burning desire to win, that will drive practice and elevate everyone within the program.”

Kyle Wiltjer (6-9, forward, Portland, OR)

Is a senior at Jesuit High School. Wiltjer has led Jesuit to back-to-back Oregon Class 6A state titles in 2009 and 2010. He averaged 22 points and 11 rebounds in the 2010 Nike Global Challenge and 19.4 points and six rebounds in the 2010 FIBA Americas U18 Championship, leading Canada to a third place finish in both tournaments. ESPN Recruiting and rank him the fifth best power forward in the country, while ESPN Recruiting ranks him 16th overall in the class of 2011 and lists him at 19th. ranks him the sixth best power forward and 25th overall.

“Kyle gives us the size that we need because the bigger and longer we are, the better we are,” said Calipari. “He’s a young man that knew who we were getting here and he said, ‘I want to play with the best. I want to be coached in a way that elevates my game. I’m not afraid of the challenge because I’m going to work hard.’”

Courtesy of Cat Scratches, the official blog of UK Athletics