Dalton Knecht could boost already efficient Kentucky Wildcats team

Mandatory Credit: Chris Jones-USA TODAY Sports
Mandatory Credit: Chris Jones-USA TODAY Sports /

Northern Colorado transfer Dalton Knecht could be the graduate senior leader the Kentucky Wildcats need.

Dalton Knect, one of the most offensively efficient players in the transfer portal, has heard from the Kentucky Wildcats, according to college basketball reporter Sean Paul.

A 2022-23 All-Big Sky member, Knecht has received interest from some big-name schools including UCLA, Gonzaga, and Texas.

After transferring from Northeastern (CO) JUCO to Northern Colorado in 2021, Knecht exploded onto the Big Sky scene. He averaged 20.2 points per game, 7.2 rebounds, and 1.8 assists with the Bears last season. His most impressive attribute was a 54.7 2P% as a 6-foot-6 guard. Knecht is thought to be one of the most efficient transfers on offense.

As Kentucky will likely rely on a very talented freshman class, adding an experienced transfer or two out of the portal could go a long way in helping the ‘Cats reach their full potential. Knecht’s efficiency could be used as a way to help the team when the freshmen inevitably hit some early growing pains. Although John Calipari has had success with primarily freshman-led teams before, an experienced leader like Knecht can’t hurt.

In three games against power conference teams and Houston, Knecht showed what he is capable of in a conference like the SEC.

Dalton Knecht vs. power conference & Houston in 2022-23:

  • @ Houston: 7 pts (3-10), 8 rebs, 1 ast
  • @ Baylor: 12 pts (3-7), 11 rebs
  • @ Colorado: 24 pts (9-18), 4 rebs, 2 ast

In a few other games against Mountain West competition, Knecht really showed up. One of his best games of the season came against New Mexico when Knecht dropped 29 points and 11 rebounds in a loss. Against Colorado State, he offered 16 points and 14 rebounds.

Knecht’s efficiency from the field, especially against good competition, is what makes a pairing with the Kentucky Wildcats so intriguing. UK ranked 17th in Adjusted Offensive Efficiency last season, according to KenPom.

Although the Wildcats clearly have things to improve on following a loss in the round of 32, efficiency is not one of them. That was one of Kentucky’s strong suits, and adding a player like Knecht would make sure they don’t drop off in that part of the game.