Kentucky Wildcats add another five-star pledge to 2023 college basketball recruiting class in Justin Edwards

Five-star small forward Justin Edwards announced his commitment to Kentucky Monday, becoming the Wildcats’ second five-star commitment in the 2023 class.

Edwards chose the Wildcats over Tennessee, with the two SEC schools vying for his services in recent months. Kentucky was the early favorite after expanding a scholarship offer to Edwards last fall, but Tennessee made up ground after hosting him for a visit in March.

But the Wildcats have had the most momentum since the live judging phase began in July, and coach John Calipari made it a priority to watch Edwards throughout the month.

Edwards is a 6ft 7 winger from Imhotep Institute Charter High School (Philadelphia) and is ranked 13th on the ESPN 100 for the Class of 2023. He has been one of the most productive players on the Nike EYBL Circuit all spring and summer, with averaged 16.6 points and 6.5 rebounds in 25 games.

Edwards shone at this month’s Peach Jam tournament and helped lead his Team Finals program to the Quarterfinals. He had 17 points and 13 rebounds in a win over elite contender GG Jackson and the CP3 All-Stars and grabbed 24 points and 10 rebounds in the quarterfinal loss.

“Justin Edwards has been in tears lately,” said ESPN National Recruiting Director Paul Biancardi. “He played very well at the Peach Jam, scoring goals, rebounding and producing steals on and off the ball due to his long frame. At 6-foot-7, he’s a tall left winger who constantly attacks the basket with aggression. Defensively, he can switch to various perimeter threats.

“His jumper is more than capable, but where he excels is in the transition as a high-level finisher on the open ground. On the half court he dominates with hard straight drives, trips to the free throw line and working the glass for extra possessions.”

Calipari and Kentucky now have two five-star recruits and three top-30 prospects in their 2023 recruit class, with Edwards joining top-five guard Robert Dillingham and four-star guard Reed Sheppard. The Wildcats are also considered favorites for No. 1 overall DJ Wagner, and are spot-on for Ron Holland (No. 4), Aaron Bradshaw (No. 19) and Ugonn Kingsley-Onyenso (No. 35). Kentucky Wildcats add another five-star pledge to 2023 college basketball recruiting class in Justin Edwards

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