If you listen to the recruiting pundits, you probably should see John Calipari smiling around 8:30 tonight. That is because he would have just landed his 2014 point guard in Tyler Ulis. Ulis, the 5’8 guard from Chicago Heights, Illinois, is rated as the 33rd best player in the 2014 class and is down to Kentucky, Iowa, and Michigan. There are some reports that Michigan State have conceded Ulis to UK, but that always is not fact.
Check out the video below from last night in which Ulis talks about his recruiting and the possibility of being part of a package deal with Devin Booker.
If anyone is to break up the Tyus Jones / Jahlil Okafor package deal to Duke, it will be Kentucky. An Ulis commitment will end any talk of Tyus Jones, but as you saw in the video, Ulis is pretty tight with Okafor too. And Okafor came away from UK’s Alumni game impressed with UK.
TJ Walker talked with Okafor’s AAU coach Mike Irvin recently and while it seems a longshot, UK is still alive for Okafor … with or without Jones.
Irvin said Okafor enjoyed the company of both the other UK targets, but especially the time he spent with Ulis.
The two formed a natural bond as Chicago players, Irvin said.
“He has a great relationship with little Tyler Ulis,” Irvin said. “Jahlil is a nice guy and he has good things to say about everybody, because he’s one of those guys that gets along with everybody. When he was down there with Tyler, he had a good time. He’s just one of those guys that’s real personable.”
And while Okafor is supposedly in a package deal with a top point guard, it isn’t Ulis, at least for now.
Okafor and Tyus Jones have been vocal for more than a year about playing together in college, but as Irvin said after the AAU season ended, that could change.
Both Jones and Okafor will take several official visits together — they visited Baylor in August — but scheduling prevent the two from going to UK together.
“Jahlil is taking his visits, Tyus is taking his visits,” Irvin said. “They would like to play together in college but there’s situations where they may not. That’s why they’re going out and checking schools. Some schools they’re (considering) going to together and some they’re not.
Tyler Ulis will announce his college decision on Friday.
“They want to play together but if something comes along where one likes one school and the other likes another, that’s a scenario that could play out also.”
Irvin said those two not visiting UK together won’t hurt the Cats chances with Okafor.
“At the end of the day you’re still entertaining the No.1 player in the country,” he said. “Ultimately him and his dad are going to make a decision and if that’s Kentucky then that’s what he’s going to do. So them not visiting UK together doesn’t mean much.”
Well, it worked for Mark Stoops and helped him land Drew Barker. Maybe John Calipari needs to get a postage meter set uo in his office? UNLV is the latest on the mailing frenzy as they mailed seven footer Stephen Zimmerman 86 letters in one day. Actions like this always get the recruits attention and he posted his haul on his twitter account. Zimmerman is the #2 player in the 2015 class per Rivals and we don’t have to worry about John Calipari being on the case.
Cal is visiting Zimmerman today.