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MBB Signee BJ Boston Named Naismith Trophy Finalist

photo & Graphic by UK Athletics

Boston a finalist for nation’s top player award 

ATLANTA – Kentucky men’s basketball signee BJ Boston is one of five finalists for the 2020 Naismith High School Trophy awarded to the nation’s top player each year.  The Atlanta Tipoff Club will unveil the winner on March 10.

At 6-7, 185 pounds, Boston is a consensus five-star prospect who is playing at Sierra Canyon High School (Chatsworth, California) for his senior season. Last summer, playing alongside and against some of the best players in the country, Boston averaged 22.8 points, 8.1 rebounds, 3.2 assists and 1.9 steals per game in the Nike EYBL circuit.

Ron Mercer, in 1995, is the only Kentucky men’s basketball player to have won Naismith High School Trophy Player of the Year honors.

“BJ is one of the best basketball players in the country,” UK head coach John Calipari said in the fall at the time of his signing. “He can score from anywhere on the floor with his length and his athleticism and he finishes really well in traffic. He’s versatile enough to play two or three positions. On top of BJ’s basketball ability, what I love about him is he wants to play with other great players. He’s already doing that on the high school level and wanted the challenge of competing with and against the best every day in practice here.”

Boston is considered one of the top shooting guards in the class and is ranked as high as No. 4 overall by Rivals. He earned 2018-19 MaxPreps Boys Basketball Junior All-American Team Honorable Mention distinction after averaging 18.4 points, 5.4 rebounds 1.9 steals while leading his previous high school in Norcross, Georgia, to the state semifinals last season. He was a 2019-20 All-USA Preseason High School Boys Basketball Team selection and has been selected to play in the McDonald’s All American Game, the Jordan Brand Classic and the Iverson Roundball Classic.  

UK’s current signing haul, which also includes Devin Askew, Terrence Clarke, Cam’Ron Fletcher, Isaiah Jackson and Lance Ware is in the mix for one of the top classes in the nation yet again. ESPN, Rivals and 247Sports currently rank UK’s class No. 1.
In every season in the Calipari era, the Wildcats have signed a top-three recruiting class according to the Recruiting Services Consensus Index, which tallies major recruiting rankings and plugs them into a formula to calculate a consensus ranking. With the fall additions, Kentucky has signed 59 top-50 recruits, 46 top-25 players and 25 top-10 players (according to Rivals) in what will now be Calipari’s 12 recruiting classes at Kentucky.

The current Wildcats return to action on Saturday when they host Florida inside of Rupp Arena. Tip is set for 6 p.m. on ESPN.

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