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Elite 3-point shooter names Kentucky among finalists. The star transfer has quite a list.

With Mark Pope making progress toward piecing together his first Kentucky basketball roster, Lexington is going to be a popular place to visit over the next several days.

One of the most coveted players in the transfer portal could be among those coming soon.

Koby Brea — a 6-foot-6, 205-pound guard — released his list of five finalists Monday afternoon, and Kentucky was on it. So was every other blue-blood in college basketball.

Brea, who spent the past four seasons at Dayton, will pick either UK, Duke, Kansas, North Carolina or UConn as his transfer destination for his fifth and final season of NCAA eligibility. The 21-year-old from Washington Heights, New York, has already engaged in recruiting conversations with the coaching staffs at all five of those programs, including a call with Pope, who was officially announced as UK’s new head coach April 12, three days after John Calipari resigned the position to become Arkansas’ new coach. Brea entered the transfer portal April 15.

Brea averaged 11.1 points and 3.8 rebounds per game this past season for Dayton, which earned a 7 seed in the NCAA Tournament and advanced to the round of 32. He made 100 3-pointers over 33 games, shooting 49.8% from long range. Brea was 9-for-16 on 3-pointers in two NCAA Tournament games, a win over Nevada and a loss to 2-seeded Arizona.

His 3-point shooting has made him a highly coveted player in the transfer portal this offseason — as evidenced by his impressive list of finalists — and ESPN ranks him at No. 36 on its most recent list of the top college basketball transfers, which was updated Monday morning.

Pope ran an offense heavy on 3-point shots last season at BYU, which finished second nationally with 32.0 long-range attempts per game. The Cougars were No. 14 in the country in offensive efficiency, according to the KenPom ratings. Brea was 100-for-201 from deep this past season at Dayton, averaging 6.1 3-point attempts per game.

Brea has not yet announced potential dates or destinations for official visits, but Kentucky is expected to host several transfer targets over the next few days.

Koby Brea shot 49.8% from 3-point range for the Dayton Flyers during the 2023-24 season.
Koby Brea shot 49.8% from 3-point range for the Dayton Flyers during the 2023-24 season.

Pope hosted his first such visitor, former Drexel big man Amari Williams, over the weekend, and Williams committed to the Wildcats on Sunday afternoon.

BYU guard Richie Saunders arrived in Lexington for an official visit Monday morning. UK is also expected to host Utah State big man Great Osobor later this week, in addition to other transfer targets.

So far, Williams and freshman guard Collin Chandler — formerly a BYU signee — are Pope’s only confirmed players for the 2024-25 season, though Kentucky Mr. Basketball Travis Perry is also widely expected to announce soon that he will stay in UK’s 2024 recruiting class.

Perry — a 6-2 guard — signed with the Cats when Calipari was still the head coach but attended Pope’s introductory press conference in Rupp Arena last week and, barring a major surprise, will stick with UK.

Pope will have to build his first Kentucky roster from scratch, with all 10 of the underclassmen from the Wildcats’ 2023-24 squad already either declared for the NBA draft or in the transfer portal. Of the players in the portal, only Adou Thiero has left open the option to return to Kentucky, but he’s also listing Arkansas, Indiana, North Carolina and Pittsburgh, and a third season at UK is not viewed as the most likely pick.

Reed Sheppard became the final Wildcat to declare for the draft last week, joining former teammates Rob Dillingham, Justin Edwards and Ugonna Onyenso as ex-Cats who plan on staying in the 2024 draft pool.

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