Canadian Content in Kentucky Once Again: Kyle Wiltjer
LEXINGTON,KY–The Kentucky Wildcats are one of the most storied clubs in the history of NCAA basketball. With seven championships to their credit, the Wildcats have also produced dozens of NBA players, including Rajon Rondo, John Wall, Jamal Mashburn, and Toronto native Jamaal Magloire. For the first time since Magloire left Kentucky to chase the bright lights of NBA life, the school can be excited about having a star Canadian on campus: 6’9 hybrid forward Kyle Wiltjer.
Hailing from Portland, Oregon, Kyle has dual citizenship, [American and Canadian] and is a product of Jesuit HS and the Canadian national program. With the skill set that Kyle possesses, Canucks can be thankful that Kyle has gravitated up north to suit up for the red and white. A McDonald’s All-American, Jordan Brand Selection and currently in Portland for the Hoop Summit, versatility is the name of the game for this forward.
Kyle is one of the top shooters in his class, and is as comfortable scoring in the paint as he is from beyond the arc. He put his shooting prowess on display at the McDonald’s All-American skills competition by besting seven other top prospects to win the Three Point shootout. Another strength that sets Kyle apart from his peers is his passing ability, and the comfort with which he creates plays for his teammates. He is adept at using his height to see over defenders and find the open man when he is double teamed.
Kyle will definitely have the opportunity to put his skills to use when he arrives in Kentucky in the fall. With several current Wildcats moving on, the floor is wide open for the freshman class to make an i impact. And what a freshman class it will be. Joining Wiltjer are three of the top prospects in the class of 2011: Anthony Davis, Michael Gilchrist and Marquis Teague. Davis is a 6’10, versatile forward who is almost impossible to deal with in the post. Gilchrist is a 6’7 swingman whose length, athleticism and nose for the ball make him a terror for opponents, while the 6’2 Teague is faster than a speeding bullet and is a human assist machine. Throw in Kyle’s inside-outside presence, and the Kentucky Wildcats truly have an embarrassment of riches.
When Jamaal Magloire played for Kentucky, he was an integral part of the Wildcats’ championship season in 1998. With a phenomenal freshman class on its way, KU could very well be on their way to another title run, with Canadians potentially witnessing one of their own win an NCAA title again. Remember the name: Kyle Wiltjer.
NOTE: Catch Wiltjer along with Canadians Kevin Pangos and Roy Rana at the Nike Hoop Summit. The action tips off on Sat April 9. Catch it live right here: http://tiny.cc/2u6io