This isn’t exactly breaking news, but word came out recently that prized 2012 recruit Nerlens Noel will take his official visit to Kentucky this weekend to watch the Wildcats take on Ole Miss.
That’s good news for Kentucky and bad news for the other teams in the Nerlens Noel sweepstakes.
Say what you want about John Calipari, but the guy knows how to recruit. And during his time as head coach of the Wildcats, he’s proven that he can get the top players in the country on a year in and year out basis.
Just think about how hard of a sell it will be for Calipari to try and convince Noel to come to school there.
He will basically be telling the kid that they want him to replace quite possibly one of the most dominant defensive players we’ve seen in college basketball in a while in Anthony Davis.
Nerlens, we want you to replace the best player in college basketball.
Not exactly a hard sell, is it? It’s the Kentucky effect that’s always talked about. Sure, Noel has made visits already to a few other schools he is entertaining. Providence, Syracuse, North Carolina, Florida, UConn, and Georgetown are all on his list of places where he could play next season.
But what he sees in Lexington on Saturday will probably be different than anything he’s seen thus far and different than anything he’ll see in the future.
Whether you like Calipari or not, the atmosphere he’s created at Kentucky is unique. Other teams can boast their achievements and championships, and all that good stuff that comes with the recruiting process.
But Calipari has created an NBA factory in Lexington. And the ultimate goal for most of these top recruits is to play in the league. It probably also doesn’t hurt when you see someone like LeBron James in the stands either at Rupp Arena.
The Wildcats are clearly the top team in the country right now, which is another sell that isn’t exactly a very hard one to make.
And that might be the scariest thought of all. Kentucky will undoubtedly lose top players like Davis and Terrence Jones. But what if they replaced them with Nerlens Noel and Shabazz Muhammad?
As long as Calipari is the coach in Lexington, that will always be a scary possibility for the rest of the college basketball world.