Five-star shooting guard Malik Monk commits to Kentucky

Malik Monk, of Bentonville (Ark.) High, surprised the basketball community with an early commitment. The 6-foot-4 guard is headed to Kentucky.

Five-star shooting guard Malik Monk verbally committed to Kentucky on the final day of the initial signing period, he told Scout. 

"Kentucky is a great fit for me and what I want out of my future," Monk said. 

"Coach Cal knows how to get the best out of great players," he added. "He has proven that in his years of coaching. I trust that he will continue to grow my game." 

Monk was expected to wait until the second signing period to make his choice, but after taking official visits to Arkansas, Kansas, Kentucky and Oregon, the 6-foot-4 athletic guard opted to go ahead and pull the trigger for the Wildcats. 

An elite athlete and scorer, Monk is regarded as the No. 1 shooting guard and the No. 6 overall prospect in the 2016 recruiting class. 

Kentucky now moves to No. 1 in Scout's 2016 recruiting class rankings with addition of Monk to a class that already consisted of three five-star recruits and another ranked among the top 30 players.  

"I see myself being apart of a great team, full of potential and continuting to get better under coach Cal," Monk said.

This make the Wildcats the big winner of the early signing period, as they were able to reel in Scout's top rated point guard -- De'Aaron Fox -- top rated shooting guard -- Monk -- and the No. 2 center in the class -- Edrice "Bam" Adebayo -- in the past six days.

Calipari also scored early pledges from No. 10 overall prospect Wenyen Gabriel and four-star power forward Sacha Killeya-Jones. 

"[I'm] friends with the guys," Monk said about the players in Kentucky's 2016 recruiting class. "We connected well and can't wait to see what the season has to come."

Kentucky assistant Kenny Payne was the point man for the Wildcats in the Monk recruitment.

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