How good is he?
The top 4 players in ESPN’s 2019 rankings are all at least 6’10 inches tall. The class is absolutely loaded with front court talent, and Vernon Carey Jr. very well may be the most talented of them all. Many college basketball fans have become familiar with James Wiseman, who is listed as the #1 player in 2019. But after it’s all said and done, it is very possible that Carey Jr. could overtake that throne.
The first thing you need to know about Vernon Carey Jr. is that he is a physical specimen. I had the chance to see him play in person and he looks like he could play in the NFL right now. He is officially listed at 6’10 inches tall and 260 pounds. With one look it is hard to believe he is currently only a Junior in high school. When Carey Jr. is eligible for the 2020 draft he will likely have grown into a man child.
He is currently projected as the #2 pick in the 2020 NBA draft, behind James Wiseman.
Vernon Carey Jr. is a proven winner playing for the University School in South Florida. His team won the prestigious City of Palms title earlier this year before losing to Montverde Academy in the high school national championship game. This is relevant because it illustrates the tough competition that Carey Jr. is playing and excelling against. His high school team is stacked with division 1 talent, including Scottie Barnes, who I think will finish as a top 3 player in the class of 2020 and get attention from Kentucky, as well.
What type of player is he?
At his size, Vernon Carey Jr. has a very soft lefty touch. He can make a mid range jump shot and knocks it down consistently from about 12 feet out, especially on the baseline. But his overall niche is using his power to create points around the rim. Vernon can finish with the best of them.
The only question mark surrounding Vernon Carey, Jr. is his motor. I noticed while watching him play 4 games that he does take a play off here and there. Which at this stage is understandable because he can turn it up whenever he wants and still dominate a high school game. When his effort ramps up he is unstoppable. Adjusting to the high level of play in division 1 may take some additional conditioning both mentally and physically. But Vernon Carey, Jr. has all the tools to be a dominant college player and beyond.
When asked who he models his game after, Vernon Carey’s answer? Anthony Davis and DeMarcus Cousins …
— Chris Fisher (@ChrisFisher247) April 21, 2018
Will Kentucky get him?
Imagine if James Wiseman and Vernon Carey, Jr. were both to commit and play for John Calipari. How insane would that be? 7 foot Wiseman playing the Center with beastly Vernon Carey Jr. as the power forward would be the best front court line up in college basketball.
I seriously doubt they would commit to the same school but anything is possible. Kentucky has done an in home visit with Carey Jr.
mike krzyzewski, Roy Williams, Tom Izzo, John Calipari all here for No. 1 player in 2019 Vernon Carey and 2020 five-star Scottie Barnes. pic.twitter.com/3uQ4lHkgZs
— Krysten Peek (@KP_Rivals) April 22, 2018
For whatever it’s worth, I think Kentucky is still in a much better position to land Wiseman than Carey Jr. But it appears both of their recruitments are a long from over.
I expect Carey Jr’s decision date to drag well into this time next year. I hope I’m wrong because the suspense is killing me.
In Cal We Trust