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Arizona basketball recruiting: Hamidou Diallo set to announce commitment Saturday night

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The prep school star is set to join a team midway through the season

Hamidou Diallo, the top-ranked shooting guard in the 2017 class, is foregoing the rest of his high school season at Putnam Science Academy and will join a collegiate program by next week.

If we’re going by technicalities, it’s down to the six schools below, but it’s probably Kentucky, UConn, and Arizona in that order for his top three.

Jerry Meyer, 247 Sports’ Director of Basketball Recruiting, first surmised the possibility that Diallo would join a Division-I program this spring. At the time it looked like the Connecticut Huskies were the favorites, but that appears to have swung to Kentucky.

Arizona appeared to have the chance to make the last impression as Adam Zagoria of ZagsBlog reported that Diallo was looking to visit Tucson, a trip that never happened and won’t happen according to sources close to the situation.

The 6-foot-5 scorer did officially visit Kentucky, calling it a ‘Great Official Visit’, and has visited UConn multiple times due to its proximity to his high school. The Kentucky Wildcats have taken the lead in his Crystal Ball by a fairly wide margin.

I would concur with the Crystal Ball direction and say he’s going to end up with Big Blue Nation. However, Meyer of 247 Sports writes, “A source extremely close to the recruitment of Hamidou Diallo has confirmed to Andrew Slater of 247Sports that Diallo intends to enroll in college for this second semester but will not play in games until the 2017-2018 season.” (Emphasis added). The key part is the latter half of the sentence which notes he won’t suit up this season.

This is similar to a football player enrolling early, learning the offense, and bulking up with the help of college trainers. Already known as an explosive athlete that might be on the skinny side, this will only speed up Diallo’s development - a scary thought to opposing coaches.

While he likely won’t technically count on the 2017 commitment list for Kentucky (if he does end up there), it would be UK’s fifth five-star commitment; a total that is far too normal for that program.

If this had been a more traditional recruitment, I think Arizona would have had a fighting chance, but not getting him on campus proved to be an apparent death blow to the Wildcats’ chances.


UPDATE

Diallo has officially committed to Kentucky.