Sydney basketballer Isaac Humphries will reclassify his high school status in order to be eligible to play for the winningest team in NCAA history.
The talented 6-11, 250-pound big man who spent last season playing for Indiana prep school La Lumiere and is another of the quality Australia juniors who have been developed by the AIS ‘s Basketball Centre of Excellence. Humphries now leaves Australia’ most successful basketball factory, the AIS, to join America’s most successful basketball factory ever, the Kentucky Wildcats.
After completing his schooling at Sydney’s Scot’s College Humphries literally had his pick of the most pregious basketball schools in America all vying for his signature. Universities like Arizona, Kansas, Oregon, Wichita State and Utah all extended offers to Humphries before he made his decision to join the Wildcats and play for their legendary coach, John Calipari.
John Calipari is considered once of the best coaches in college basketball and also has experiance coaching in the NBA (New Jersey Sets) and internationally (Dominican Republic national basketball team). Calipari has been able to guide talented big men like DeMarcus Cousins, Anthony Davis, Nerlens Noel and Enes Kanter into NBA careers over the past four years and Humphries is hoping this opportunity allows him to reach his own NBA dreams.
‘The NBA is definitely something I aspire to, but I’ve got to work hard to get there,” Humphries told the Canberra Times in a previous interview.
”For now, I’m going to focus on college and then I’ll see what happens.”
The American media believe big things are in store for Humphries with many basketball websites rating him as only of the best players in the country.
He has been rated as a top 50 player in the 2016 class rankings put together by ESPN. 24/7 Sports has Humphries ranked as the No. 43 prospect (#4 center) and another basketball ranking website Rivals has Humphries ranked the No. 35 overall. All this goes to show while Humphries may still be a realtive unknown in his home country of Australai (besides the basketball tragics who follow AussieHoopla) the scouts and coaches in the United States know well and truly who he is.
Humphries is known as a low post scorer who’s game is similar to that of Dakari Johnson, who was recently drafted to the Oklahoma City Thunder via Kentucky. Humphries however is more offensively polished at this point as evidenced by his showing with Australia during the 2014 FIBA U17 World Championships, where he was an All-Tournament selection while helping lead his country to a silver medal. In seven games at the event, Humphries averaged 18.9 points, 11.6 rebounds, 3.3 blocks and 1.6 assists per game while also shooting 57 percent from the field and 82 percent from the free-throw line.
Although playing time in his first year will be something he has to earn, Humphries addition to a sold front court of Skal Labissiere, Alex Poythress and Marcus Lee rounds out easily the deepest and possibly the best front court in college basketball today.
Kentucky is also expected to add New Zealand freshman big man Tai Wynyard for the second semester of the season. It will be exciting to see those two go head to head in Kentucky scrimmages now knowing they will no doubt both have large roles to play in many FIBA Oceania tournaments in the future.