It’s incredibly early in the recruiting cycle for class of 2025 players, but several recruiting services have already evaluated and ranked the top high school basketball sophomores in the country.
Class of 2025 basketball recruiting rankings exist for each of ESPN, On3 and Rivals, with the lists all featuring several players with Kentucky ties, or who are already being recruited by the Wildcats.
It should be noted that in addition to the inexact science that comes with ranking recruits at such an early stage of their basketball careers, each of the class of 2025 rankings published varies in size.
It’s also worth reminding that NCAA rules allow college basketball coaches to make unlimited calls and texts to recruits on June 15 after their sophomore year, a date that’s still more than eight months away for these players.
Here’s a quick look at the top class of 2025 basketball recruits with connections to UK, and what you need to know about them:
Darryn Peterson (shooting guard)
ESPN: No. 4.
On3: No. 4.
Rivals: No. 4.
Notes: Peterson is currently the only player in the class of 2025 with a publicly reported scholarship offer from Kentucky, reflecting a growing trend with John Calipari when it comes to passing along scholarship offers earlier in the recruiting process.
Peterson plays in the same EYBL program as current star UK recruits Aaron Bradshaw and DJ Wagner.
Peterson’s father, Darryl, is one of the top scorers in Akron basketball history.
The younger Peterson, listed by Rivals as being 6-foot-5 and 190 pounds, has more than 20 scholarship offers including from the likes of Alabama, Baylor, Illinois, Indiana and Texas.
Travis Graf, a national recruiting analyst for Rivals, described Peterson as “an advanced shot creator and maker (that) can get scorching hot at the drop of a hat. He plays at a nice pace and has a terrific feel for the game on the offensive end. The five-star guard’s craftiness and pace are that of an upperclassman.”
15 Year Old Darryn Peterson had Duke Coaches shaking their heads at NIKE EYBL KC pic.twitter.com/Ua5rucvr3d
— Ballislife.com (@Ballislife) July 8, 2022
Peterson is set to take part in a USA Basketball Junior National Team minicamp in early October in Colorado.
Several other UK commits and recruits will also be at the minicamp, including Justin Edwards (class of 2023 commit), Ron Holland (class of 2023 recruit), Airious Bailey (class of 2024 recruit), Ian Jackson (class of 2024 recruit), Karter Knox (class of 2024 recruit) and Tahaad Pettiford (class of 2024 recruit).
Jasper Johnson (point guard)
ESPN: No. 16.
On3: No. 20.
Rivals: No. 38.
Notes: Anytime a Central Kentucky resident becomes a prominent college basketball recruit, the assumption is that Kentucky will be a major player in the recruitment process.
That won’t be hard in the case of Jasper Johnson, who is the son of Dennis Johnson, the former star UK football player who is currently the head football coach and athletics director at Woodford County High School.
The younger Johnson plays both basketball and football at Woodford County, but has specifically become a standout player on the hardwood.
— Jasper Johnson (@BruhJasperJ) July 15, 2022
As a freshman last season, the left-handed Johnson averaged nearly 14 points per game and shot better than 50 percent from the field.
Johnson has already attracted interest from both Kentucky and Louisville, although scholarship offers haven’t yet arrived from either school.
Among the scholarship offers Johnson has reported are Alabama, Eastern Kentucky and Ohio. Johnson also recently took an unofficial visit to Notre Dame.
Danny Carbuccia (point guard)
ESPN: Not ranked.
On3: No. 21.
Rivals: No. 19.
Notes: So far, Kentucky has been able to take a look at Carbuccia while assessing one of his older teammates, Boogie Fland, who is a top Kentucky target in the class of 2024.
Both Carbuccia and Fland attend Archbishop Stepinac High School just outside of New York City.
Kentucky made multiple visits in September to Archbishop Stepinac as part of its recruiting pitch to Fland, with both Calipari and assistant coach Orlando Antigua stopping by.
As a result of those visits, Kentucky got a chance to watch Carbuccia, who currently has a strong list of high-major offers from the likes of Providence, Seton Hall, St. John’s and West Virginia.
— Primetime (@pthoops_) December 13, 2021
Much like his high school teammate Fland — who won a gold medal with the United States last summer — Carbuccia is one of many top basketball recruits gaining experience by playing international basketball.
Carbuccia plays on youth national teams for the Dominican Republic, the same nation for which Calipari previously served as head coach.