Although Kentucky Wildcats’ freshman swingman James Young was one of the most highly sought after players in the country last year (Young was ranked as the ninth best overall prospect, the fourth best small forward prospect and the top player in the state of Michigan), he was almost viewed as an afterthought because he was Kentucky’s fourth highest-rated recruit, ranking behind big man Julius Randle and the Harrison twins, Andrew and Aaron. Another Kentucky signee, Dakari Johnson, was just one spot behind Young.
However, Young now looks like the team’s second best NBA prospect behind only Randle.
ESPN’s Draft Insider, Chad Ford, who released his newest mock draft on Wednesday, currently projects Young as the ninth pick of the draft, which is held by the Cleveland Cavaliers.
“While Young has struggled at times with his jump shot this season, many NBA scouts believe he has the chance to be a star,” Ford explained.
The 6’6, 215-pound Young is averaging 14.4 points, 4.4 rebounds and 1.9 assists in 32.4 minutes per game for Kentucky this season.