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Knight Chooses Kentucky

Team Fizz analyzes Brandon Knight’s decision to follow the NBA-bound guards of Coach Cal.

Posted: D.A., 4:27p

There’s nothing shocking about a guard with NBA potential, choosing a coach which delivers him that. Following in the footsteps of Derrick, Tyreke, and John – Knight will don the blue and ball for one season in Lexington. The surprise (or scare) might be how open he was in his press conference about luring other high-profile recruits to play alongside him. Watching Twitter explode around his decision was a little like watching the Yankees decide they were signing every minor-leaguer under the age of 16. @BrowardHSSports “Brandon Knight ust said on ESPN interview that he’s hoping to recruit more top players with him; mentioned Josh Selby and CJ Leslie.” @AdamZagoria “Knight lists Selby, Joseph, Leslie. ‘Whoever wants to come, I’m going to try to get them there.'” Of course, it could just be bravado and enthusiasm from Knight. But the pipeline of All-World talent could heavily be pointed in Coach Cal’s favor.

It was a long shot for the Orange. Really Syracuse didn’t jump back into Knight’s final four until about two weeks ago. Adam Kuperstein had covered Knight his entire high school career at Miami’s NBC-6. He told The Fizz earlier in the week: “Rumors are swirling in South Florida that there’s already shady business with John Calipari going on. As a junior, I had a good feeling he was going to UConn. He was probably waiting out John Wall’s decision. I’m guessing it’s going to be Kentucky.”

There is heavy speculation around the UConn program that Calhoun’s heavy-handed ways during a losing season wore thin on many of the Husky players. That could explain why Connecticut seemed to become an afterthought on Knight’s list. There was always sentiment that Knight wanted to get out of the state – so Miami and Florida were never real possibilities. SU had the front-line recruiting class coming in, so the spotlight may have been refracted just a little from Knight. But really, despite the Elite 8 exit, the entire college hoops world is watching Calipari at UK. A flood of talented one-and-done’s depart last week and shortly after Knight decides he’s going to make an announcement. No surprise that a kid with NBA visions would choose the (often shady) center of the basketball landscape.

Posted: Mike Couzens, 4:13p

Not surprised by the Knight decision. Orange Nation held out some hope for a big prospect of his caliber, but let’s face it – Knight would be coming in with a pretty stacked class anyway to SU. Knight is the type of guy who needs to be getting big time exposure in his first and probably only year in college, and he could have been stuck behind Triche and Jardine with Syracuse. I would have loved it if he chose the Orange, but the signs all pointed to Kentucky down the stretch. He knows John Calipari will get him the minutes and exposure that he needs to try and land an NBA deal after one year in Lexington. I’m still excited about the big four Syracuse is bringing in.

Posted: Ted Conroy, 10:23a.

It’s been a long process, but this is what it comes down to. Brandon Knight will decide his future today at 4p on national television. As BK dons the cap, SU will wrap up another year of basketball recruiting. With or without the Wizard of Pinecrest, the Class of ’10 will be finalized.

So where is he headed? Most say Kentucky. And interestingly, the ESPNU schedule for tomorrow may tell you all you need to know Orange Nation.

The “Signing Special” is going to go like this.

Brandon Knight decides at 4p, Ray McCallam is at 4:15p, and then John Calipari is scheduled to stop by at 4:20p.

Soooo… Calipari is obviously the coach of Kentucky. At 4:20, he’ll join the broadcast. (Not the date 4/20, potheads) but 20 minutes after Knight’s decision.

We here at The Fizz will let you in on a secret: Ray McCallum isn’t being recruited by Kentucky. Never was. Isn’t going there.

That means that unless coach Cal is announcing the class of 2011’s fake SAT grades, he’s gonna be reacting to something (and you don’t schedule him to react to losing a kid).

Despite The Fizz finding reason for Syracuse hope, the writing on the wall says Knight is Kentucky bound. (Sigh)

Stay tuned: Complete Team Fizz reaction and analysis coming at 4p.

The Fizz is owned, edited and operated by Damon Amendolara. D.A. is an ’01 Syracuse graduate from the Newhouse School with a degree in Broadcast Journalism.

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