Luke Kennard and family don’t read all of the recruiting rumors, predictions and rankings about the heralded Franklin guard — in part because at this point, it would be a full time job, and also because some of the reports are off the wall.
“We’ll sometimes read what people are speculating about where he’s going to go. Not that he won’t go there, but they seem like they’re probably guessing,” said Mark Kennard, whose son remains one of the more prized 2015 prospects in the nation.
Some believe Kennard’s repeated trips to Kentucky and his family’s geographical ties will lead him to UK. Others whisper location will win out, and he’ll be a Buckeye. And there’s been plenty of speculation that Kennard, also an academic star, sees Duke as the perfect fit. There’s also Michigan, which has recruited him the longest, North Carolina and Louisville.
But if there’s indeed a favorite for the 6-5 junior, who’s averaging a robust 40.2 points per game through 15 games, that information has remained within family walls. Kennard will take another visit or two — likely to Duke, where he’s not yet visited — before long, and perhaps decide around June.
“It’s he’s comfortable with it, he’s going to make it,” Mark Kennard said. “It’s going to be tough.”
Wayne update: Wayne juniors continue to generate interest.
Many of the schools in the Mid-American Conference have offered D’Mitrik Trice, Ahmad Wagner and Xeyrius Williams, and thanks to their efforts off the court, the Ivy League schools have been coming in full force as well.
“D’Mitrik had a 4.0 [GPA] last quarter, Ahmad had a 4.0 and Xeyrius had a 3.67,” Wayne coach Travis Trice said. “That’s probably the biggest thing with all three of them.”
That’s not to imply they can’t play. Point guard Trice leads the GWOC in assists (6.9 per game) and the 6-foot-6 Wagner leads the conference in field-goal percentage and ranks second in rebounding and blocks. Williams, a 6-7 forward, averages a near double-double. The three showed their wares last month in front of a packed audience of recruiters at Flyin’ to the Hoop.
“Wichita State came up to me after the game and said they want to recruit all three,” Trice said. “West Virginia really likes Ahmad, the way he plays and how he fits their system.”
Eye-opener: After a strong junior season during which he was the only junior on the all-GWOC team, Trotwood-Madison’s Dezhontae Bennett is making a push for all-state consideration. The explosive 6-foot-2 senior leads the conference in scoring (25 points per game), rebounding (10.8) and blocks (4.9).
Along the way, he’s begun to convince recruiters he’s a Division I prospect. But there’s a catch: Bennett isn’t expected to qualify for Division I enrollment next year.
“He’ll be OK academically. He kind of took off his first two years and then the light bulb turned on and it became real to him,” said Trotwood coach Rocky Rockhold. “There’s not a junior college anywhere around that’s not on him.”
Bennett’s unusual explosiveness and defensive ability — he’s kept up with speedy point guards and 6-8 big men this season — could make him a hot commodity coming out of junior college . Dayton has been taking a long look, as have Wright State and Bowling Green.
“He’s one of my favorite kids ever. He just works and never complains,” Rockhold said.