Hamga's Name Circulates for '07

"Our staff continues to work feverishly on finishing up this signing class and getting ready for next season and beyond."

That quote, brought to you in part by new head basketball coach at UK, Billy Gillispie, in his official announcement of the signed letter of intent from Alex Legion, Thursday, could go down as one of the biggest understatements of all time.

Just a few weeks since Springdale (Ark.) power forward Michael Sanchez became apart of the 2007 discussion after having told virtually all of his confidants he was all but signed, sealed and delivered to Findlay Prep School for next season, Gillispie is at it again.

Decatur (Ill.) Christian School's Baes Hamga has suddenly become a possibility for '07 after receiving a test score that would make him eligible for this upcoming year.

The five dollar update on Hamga is as follows.

Originally a 2008 recruit, Hamga was a prospect that was still relatively unknown when he verbally committed to then coach Steve Alford at Iowa in June of 2006. The staff moved on to New Mexico and so the junior high school product moved on as well.

"He had a heck of a relationship with some of the guys on that staff," Decatur Christian head coach Alan Huss said in an earlier interview. "Coach Alford and Coach (Craig) Neal had done a great job recruiting him from day one. With the changes, it's a natural step to take a look at what else is out there."

At 6-foot-11, 225 pounds, the Illinois native wouldn't take long before he had already made a long list of suitors. UNLV, Tennessee, Florida, Kentucky, UConn, Georgetown, Indiana, UConn and Memphis have all been invited to the party and Hamga, in the meantime, has seen his stock rise to a level unforeseen.

"He's going to stick with that (list) instead of re-opening it to everyone where he'd have to deal with a lot more stuff if he was completely wide open," Huss said. "It's a solid core. He's got a nice relationship with some of the people, and some he doesn't know very well at all."

That, of course, was March.

April arrived and the news of a passing test score did as well, which would make Hamga eligible to enroll in summer school and play for a university in 2007.

Kentucky - desperate for players - immediately went full court press on Hamga in hopes he could enroll immediately and help the Wildcats dreaded front court situation next season. Hamga, who is rated a four-star prospect at center, would add yet another piece to the puzzle that had previously not been an option just four weeks ago.

The star prospect, who has a 7-4" wingspan, can grab the rim barely standing on his tip toes and is someone that defines a dominant shot blocker at the next level. He'd almost immediately be seen as an impact player and someone that would fight for a starting spot next year.

At least until Gillispie adds another name to the mix.


AllWildcats Top Stories