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Why Cade Cunningham’s Recruitment Just Got a Lot More Interesting

Why a recent UK commit could help OSU.

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I always say the wide world of recruiting is a fickle beast. It often sounds like a caveat I plug into my stories as a way of allowing myself wiggle room, which I guess in part it is. But it’s a statement that must be said often because it’s true. Things change frequently. Even if a recruit thinks their mind is made up, a coach may have a different plan in mind that shifts how a scholarship is used. It’s an ever-changing landscape.

The most recent example of this came Thursday when five-star point guard Devin Askew, considered by some as the No. 1 player at his position in the 2021 class, committed to Kentucky. Now, on its face, a five-star committing to Kentucky seems like your run-of-the-mill news. Dig a little deeper, and you’ll see it could have a ripple effect on …. Cade Cunningham.

Here’s why: Askew is a star. He’s rated by 247Sports as the No. 10 overall player in the 2021 class. He’s so good, in fact, that many believe a reclassification to the 2020 class is a matter of when, not if.

See where I’m going now? Cunningham is already a 2020 prospect, and like Askew, he’s at the top of Kentucky’s wish list. The problem for Kentucky, though, is that a two point guard class is a tad unlikely. Players the caliber of Askew and Cunningham don’t exactly want to share the spotlight. And since 2010, only thrice has UK taken multiple point guards in a recruiting class, with several of those instances a point guard-combo guard duo.

Ultimately, it may come down to scholarship numbers in 2020. True freshman combo guard Tyrese Maxey is a near-lock to go one-and-done after this season, which would free up a spot for UK. I’d also expect sophomore guard Ashton Hagans to turn pro as well. If that happens, the ‘Cats could have the spots to pursue Cunningham as a side piece to Askew, assuming he does indeed reclassify.

But is that what Cunningham wants?

That’s probably the question Kentucky coaches are asking themselves behind closed doors. And after Askew’s commitment, it’s perhaps a recruiting tool OSU’s staff can use to their advantage to try and lure him to Stillwater.

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