SUMMER TRIP: UK commits excited to play for Calipari, USA

T.J. Walker, Basketball Recruiting Analyst
Cats Illustrated

CHICAGO-- While the Kentucky commits bond and get to know one another during McDonald's All-American week, they can't help but talk about the future.

The four UK commits are excited for fun dorm stories and being college students in Lexington, but three of them may make an international trip before ever putting on a Kentucky jersey.

With John Calipari coaching the USA U19 team this summer, they may get a preview of what it's like playing for their college coach in June and July.


“I can’t wait,” P.J. Washington said. “It will be great for me. I feel like I’m coming in next year knowing everything and knowing how he coaches and applying it to my game.”

P.J. Washington, Quade Green and Jarred Vanderbilt all have experience playing USA Basketball, but never while being coached by John Calipari.

The event is July 1st-9th in Cairo, Egypt and could feature other UK targets and current team members, such as Hamidou Diallo.

“Hopefully I make it,” Quade Green said. “Hopefully I come in there and do what he wants me to do and help win a gold medal.”

It seems likely that Green will make the squad coached by his future college coach. Last year Green averaged 4.2 points and 2.6 assists for the USA U18 team.

Vanderbilt sat out last year because of injury but was one of the best players on the U16 team in 2015. He averaged 9.4 points and 7.8 rebounds per game as USA won gold.

“It’s a great opportunity, why not?” Vanderbilt said. “We’ll get a feel for his coaching. It’s a great advantage for us.”

The team will be picked in June and leave for Egypt later that month. Several of these kids are well traveled but the UK commits have never been to Egypt.

“I know it’s hot,” Vanderbilt said. “I’ve never seen a pyramid.”

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