The number one player in the 2023 class is 6-2 goaltender DJ Wagner. DJ is the grandson of the great Milt Wildcats Wagner of UofL and the son of the great Dajuan Wagner of Memphis. His father played for Kentucky head coach John Calipari while he was in Memphis.
I rightly assume that the Cats will be in the final race for the ultra-talented guard.
CBS Sports’ Matt Norlander wrote a profile of the Wagner family and the three generations of basketball greatness. Read the article because it is fantastic. DJ appears to be a wonderful, humble young man who happens to be a good basketball player.
Although DJ has over 40 college offerings across the country, he has yet to narrow his roster, and the college is the preferred destination over the G-League or other professional options.
DJ explains his thought process on the way to college: âI am really very happy that all schools want to contact me. I’m just happy right now. I don’t look, damn, all these schools are calling. I am open to any coach. I’m just grateful for everyone reaching out to me. I have always been a college basketball fan and have always loved college. I’m going to the university. I like the competitive nature around sport, watch The madness of March, fighting teams [to win], the fans, how passionate they are about these teams, that stuff makes me love college basketball.
His AAU program is led by Pervis Ellison who is another Louisville legend. There has been some debate as to whether Chris Mack’s staff even contacted DJ to play at UofL, aAnd it should be obvious that the Cards would be involved as he’s the grandson of one of their grown-ups and being coached by another.
Make no mistake that there is no debate on whether or not John Calipari was involved. Ellison states that he has been in contact with Orlando Antigua regarding DJ Wagner. Expect the full court press to be applied as Wagner’s junior year progresses.
While Wagner is the top player in the 2023 class, many Kentucky fans have given Reed Sheppard their full attention to recruiting. While I’d love to have Sheppard because he’s a legacy and his recruiting is expected to skyrocket over the coming season, Wagner is the most important rookie in the class for John Calipari. I totally understand the Sheppard infatuation, but Wagner is the better prospect of the two and his bond with Cal is just as strong and probably stronger.
Cal hired Orlando Antigua and Chin Coleman to re-establish their program in the UK as a premier destination for the country’s top high school talent. Kentucky are looking to hit hard in the 2022 class with Skyy Clark, Dereck Lively, Shaedon Sharpe, and more. and to maintain this momentum until 2023 as well.
Involving DJ Wagner would be a huge boost to a program that was recently standard in the recruiting world, but has gone downhill a bit in recent years.
Look at the work of the DJ!