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Kentucky wildcat basketball

SAD NEWS: Head coach Mark Pope of Kentucky was fired today by the team president

Is Kentucky getting closer to landings a key guard for next season? It sure seems like it.

Michigan has struggled admitting transfers over the last few years due to academic requirements. Most notably, the two recent transfers who were not admitted were Terrence Shannon Jr and Caleb Love. Now, there’s a third major name that is rumored to be denied by the Michigan admissions department.

That is Florida Atlantic guard Johnell Davis. According to a report, the staff is trying to find ways around it, but with no success at this point.

How does this impact Kentucky? Well, there are now multiple reports, including one from notable college basketall insider Trilly Donovan, that Kentucky and Arkansas are the two teams that will battle it out for Davis.

Houston was another team rumored to be involved, but it appears that is not as high of a probability.

Davis burst on to the scene during FAU’s Final Four run two years ago when he averaged 13.8 points, 5.4 rebounds and shot 35.7 percent from three during the 2022-23 season. During FAU’s NCAA Tournament run, however, he saw his averages increase to 15.4 points, 6.8 rebounds and 2.8 assists per game.

Davis came back this past season despite options available in the transfer portal and put together an AAC Player of the Year season. He averaged 18.2 points, 6.3 rebounds, 2.9 assists and shot 41.4 percent from three.

In conference play alone, the 6-foot-5 guard averaged 19.6 points, 5.8 rebounds and 3.7 assists per game.

His three-point jump was significant — going from 23.1 percent as a freshman on 0.3 makes per game, to 41.4 percent on 1.7 made 3s a game.

Because Davis was always linked to Michigan, not many schools tried to get involved when he entered the transfer portal following the departure of head coach Dusty May to Michigan.

If this does come down to another John Calipari vs Kentucky battle, it’ll be interesting to see who wins this one. Recently there was some chatter about Arkansas booster Jerry Jones and his desire to do just about anything to keep players from going to Kentucky. We’ll see if that’s the case here.

Kentucky is in the midst of an entire roster rebuild after the entire roster from 2023-24 left — either to the portal or NBA. The Wildcats are coming off of a massive transfer win, however, landing big man Amari Williams over the weekend.

Mark Pope could certainly get his offseason started in a very significant way if Davis is the next player to join the Kentucky tradition.

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