Blue Chips Full Court Press – Week of 07/04/2022

2022-23 Home Schedule Shaping Up Nice!

Kentucky’s 2022-23 SEC Schedule was announced last week. The Cats will play home games against Arkansas, Tennessee, Auburn, Florida, Texas A&M, LSU, South Carolina, and Vanderbilt. This mixed in with non-conference home games against Louisville and Kansas (with more still to come) will make for some very exciting matchups in Lexington next season. Kentucky’s away SEC opponents will be Arkansas, Florida, Tennessee, Vanderbilt, Georgia. Alabama, Mississippi State, Missouri, and Ole Miss. Expect a few neutral site games to be added to the mix – matchups against Michigan State and UCLA are already scheduled.

Among all the summer practice talk thus far, it appears that weight-training, workouts, and feedback from NBA scouts are creating a newfound confidence for Jacob Toppin. The stars are all aligning for Toppin to have a breakout season – he broke into the starting lineup, his confidence is growing exponentially, and he has the NPOY Oscar Tshiebwe taking on all the pressure and expectations.

The electric duo of De’Aaron Fox and Malik Monk are reunited once again! The Sacramento Kings signed Monk away from the Lakers on a 2-year, $19M deal. Together the two created one of the most high-octane backcourts in college basketball history during their time at Lexington in 2017. All of BBN will stay up late and tune in to games on the West Coast to see these two back in action.

National Media buzz seems to have the pendulum swinging on DJ Wagner’s recruitment back into the favor of the Cats. If you remember, many analysts believed new Louisville HC Kenny Payne’s hiring of Milt Wagner (DJ’s Grandfather) put Louisville in the lead for the Nation’s #1 recruit. As we had learned through sources close to DJ and the program, Kentucky’s staff never felt like they had lost the upper-hand in the recruiting battle. That information now is trending towards being accurate, with more and more analysts flipping their predictions, or at least changing their confidence level. A Kentucky class of DJ, Dilly, Reed, and Aaron Bradshaw could be something we see by the end of the summer… fingers crossed!

The 2022 NBA Summer League is kicking off this week in Las Vegas, and it’s a Kentucky takeover. A total of 14 former Kentucky players are participating — Nick Richards (Hornets), Ashton Hagans (Cavs), Kellan Grady (Nuggets), TyTy Washington Jr. (Rockets), Isaiah Jackson (Pacers), BJ Boston (Clippers), Sacha Killeya-Jones (Lakers), Kahlil Whitney (Timberwolves), Shaedon Sharpe (Trail Blazers), Nate Sestina (Kings), Johnny Juzang (Jazz), Davion Mintz (Wizards). ESPN, ESPN 2, and NBATV will air the games. Be sure to catch all of La Familia in action!