Mark Pope and the UK basketball coaches are watching these recruits at the NBPA Top 100 camp

Kentucky has a major presence at one of the premier college basketball recruiting events of the year.

The NBPA TOP 100 Camp has been underway for several days already at the ESPN Wide World of Sports Complex near Orlando, Florida, featuring 100 of the top high school basketball players spanning the 2025, 2026 and 2027 recruiting classes.

Starting Tuesday and continuing through Wednesday, college basketball coaches can attend the event and get eyes on some of the best basketball talent the country has to offer.

It’s an opportunity the UK program appears poised to take full advantage of.

On Tuesday, the Herald-Leader spotted all four Kentucky basketball coaches that are allowed to go out recruiting at the event.

This group includes head coach Mark Pope, associate head coach Alvin Brooks III and assistant coaches Cody Fueger and Jason Hart. All four UK coaches were spotted inside the AdventHealth Arena for Tuesday’s slate of games.

Also on Tuesday, class of 2025 center Chris Cenac Jr. reported a scholarship offer from the Wildcats. Fueger and Hart were courtside for Cenac’s second game of the day.

The 6-foot-10, 220-pound Cenac is ranked by the 247Sports Composite as a four-star prospect and the No. 29 overall player in the 2025 recruiting class.

Brooks, Fueger, Hart and Pope were just four of dozens of high-major coaches who filled the gym for Tuesday’s games.

Among the players that Kentucky’s coaches watched on Tuesday, in addition to Cenac, were:

Five-star class of 2025 small forward Dwayne Aristode (who reported a Kentucky scholarship offer on Monday night).

Five-star class of 2025 combo guard Meleek Thomas (who took an official visit to Kentucky last season when former UK coach John Calipari was recruiting him).

Four-star class of 2025 combo guard Kaden Magwood (a Louisville native).

Four-star class of 2025 center Malachi Moreno (who plays at Georgetown’s Great Crossing High School).

Five-star class of 2025 power forward Tounde Yessoufou.

Four-star class of 2025 small forward Hudson Greer.

Four-star class of 2025 combo guard Davion Hannah.

Kentucky basketball coaching staff back recruiting at NBPA Top 100 Camp

The NBPA Top 100 Camp represents the latest prep basketball recruiting stop for the Kentucky basketball coaching staff.

While most of the focus has been on the transfer portal this offseason as Pope and his coaching staff assemble a brand-new UK roster for the 2024-25 season, it’s clear Kentucky’s coaches are also taking time to plan for the future.

In addition to this week’s NBPA Top 100 Camp, UK has had a presence at several recruiting events this spring, including the Nike EYBL circuit (Indiana), Adidas 3SSB circuit (Texas), Puma PRO16/NXT circuit (Kansas) and the FIBA Men’s Under-18 AmeriCup (Argentina), which was Pope’s most recent recruiting stop.

Now in Orlando, Kentucky coaches will have a chance to see and be seen by several players they’re in the process of building a recruiting relationship with.

Chief among this group is Moreno, the four-star class of 2025 center out of Great Crossing.

Moreno — whose older brother Michael just wrapped up a distinguished five-year playing career at Eastern Kentucky — is ranked as the No. 37 overall player in the 2025 recruiting class.

Moreno is also off to a big start at the NBPA Top 100 camp: Through six games, Moreno is averaging 17.5 points, 8.2 rebounds and 1.2 block per game.

The NBPA Top 100 camp is considered one of the best evaluation settings for recruits, with structured play and officiating and current NBA players serving as the head coaches for the camp’s 10 different teams.

Moreno’s team is overseen by Terance Mann, a four-year player at Florida State who has spent his entire five-year NBA career with the Los Angeles Clippers.

Moreno is considered to be one of the best recruits in Kentucky in the 2025 recruiting class. Other standout prospects with ties to the commonwealth for the 2025 class include guards Jasper Johnson (who formerly played at Woodford County) and Magwood (who formerly played at Louisville’s Western High School).

Both Johnson (Missouri’s Link Academy) and Magwood (first Virginia’s Oak HIll Academy and now Overtime Elite) now play at prep programs outside of Kentucky.

UK is on a two-year streak of successfully landing the best men’s basketball recruit from the commonwealth. In 2023, it was Reed Sheppard. This year it’s Travis Perry, who recently capped his high school career by suiting up for the Kentucky all-stars in their annual rivalry series with Indiana.

The aforementioned Magwood (15 points and 4.2 assists per game) has been another of the standouts from the NBPA Top 100 camp. Other notable players (and Kentucky recruits) so far include Cenac (who is averaging 17.5 points and 10 rebounds per game) and Yessoufou, whose 25.8 points per game ranks second among all camp participants.

The NBPA Top 100 camp also features an elite list of prospects whose fathers were NBA mainstays, a group that includes class of 2025 shooting guard Kiyan Anthony (Carmelo Anthony), class of 2026 small forward Tajh Ariza (Trevor Ariza), class of 2025 small forward Dorian Hayes (ex-Cat Chuck Hayes), class of 2025 small forward Andre Iguadola Jr. (Andre Iguadola), class of 2025 small forward Jermaine O’Neal Jr. (Jermaine O’Neal) and class of 2025 small forward Jacob Wilkins (Dominique Wilkins).

New Kentucky basketball coach Mark Pope is continuing his eventful spring by attending the NBPA Top 100 Camp near Orlando, Florida.
New Kentucky basketball coach Mark Pope is continuing his eventful spring by attending the NBPA Top 100 Camp near Orlando, Florida.

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