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Since he did not play in a game after Feb. 4 because of an ankle injury and then an unspecified medical procedure, no one can be surprised that senior Sahvir Wheeler has put his name in the transfer portal and will not be back at Kentucky next season.
Wheeler lost his starting point guard spot to freshman Cason Wallace this season despite leading the Southeastern Conference in assists the last two years — one at Georgia, one at Kentucky.
Many Kentucky fans lost confidence in Wheeler’s ability to run the team and the disconnect only worsened when he missed Senior Night because of a medical procedure he has done that day.
Kentucky has signed guards DJ Wagner, Reed Sheppard and Rob Dillingham (even though Dillingham’s eligibility is now the subject of speculation) for next season and could return Antonio Reeves, CJ Fredrick and/or Adou Thiero.
Wheeler started 43 games the last two years for coach John Calipari and that prompted ESPN’s Jeff Borzello immediately noting that Wheeler would be “one of the most sought-after point guards on the transfer market” despite becoming a non-factor for Kentucky this season.
Wheeler averaged 10.1 points, 6.9 assists, 2.6 rebounds and 1.1 steals per game for UK during the 2021-22 season when Kentucky was a No. 2 seed in the NCAA Tournament but was upset in the first round of the NCAA.
Last season he averaged 9.5 points and 6.3 assists in UK’s first 15 games before injuring his shoulder in mid-January. He did not play when UK won at Tennessee and never got his starting spot back before he injured his ankle in early February when he had eight points and three assists in a win over Florida and never returned to action.
In Wheeler’s second year at Georgia he ranked fourth nationally in assists and picked UK over LSU, Kansas and Oklahoma State when he transferred.
His departure is no surprise and probably the best thing for him and Kentucky.
Calipari certainly embraced Wheeler’s decision.
“Talked with Sahvir a few days ago and he decided that he wants to graduate and play one more year because of the injuries he faced this year,” Calipari posted on Twitter. “He also wanted a fresh start, and I supported his decision. Sahvir has been a big part of our team and we wish him nothing but the best.”
It’s best for Wheeler. Hope he does well.
But the biiggest thing I’ve been calling about is. a large amount of decommits because of non playing time and will be really bad if incomming top prospects decide to .
Because they see a 7 footer block master only gets a total of 4 minutes pf PT in entire season as well as Collins no playing time and here he was the star in Bahamas and early season
Better fasten your safety bellts BBN it’s going to get turbulent unless Cal does some big time smoothing
He has all sorts of ability. If he could just learn to play under control, he could be very valuable to a team.
Wheeler sees the writing on the wall, like no future anymore at UK. I wish him well. This young man has heart. Also, UK basketball has become a place of highly rated talent that just can’t produce championship results.
Arkansas, Alabama, and Duke had enough future NBA talent to create 4 teams capable of winning a championship. They didn’t even sniff a Final Four. I don’t blame any of them for not coming back. Not because of Cal (they came here because of Cal), but because of what they had to endure from the entitled "fans". I don’t know if Wheeler didn’t want to play anymore, but I don’t blame him. The "Bennies" wanted him on the bench and then some ridiculed him for not playing. Personally I think a portion of fans have went off the deep end.
Jim, i agree with you. I’ve been critical of Cal at times, but never been critical of the players some of our so call entitled fans has hurt our program as well.
What has gone off the deep end is this program.
Our program is like a circus now and it will not get better until the ring leader Cal is shown the door.