TIREY: Jared Carter commits to Kentucky

Jared Carter has committed to Kentucky. A lot of buzz surrounded his recruitment. Jared Carter has seen many a college basketball powerhouse program come to his doorstep over the past several weeks. And in the end he chose to stay at home and play for Kentucky. Jim Tirey interviewed Carter prior to the verbal committment.

> Jared Carter has committed to Kentucky. A lot of buzz surrounded his recruitment. Scott County and little Georgetown, Kentucky is home to one of the late signees this year in the high school hoops scene. Jared Carter has seen many a college basketball powerhouse program come to his doorstep over the past several weeks. And in the end he chose to stay at home and play for Kentucky.

Carter recently confirmed that he had narrowed his choices but seemed he would delay a decision until some events occured, including a couple of late visits. "I will try to official visit Kentucky," said Carter Wednesday. "But we still got to line it up. North Carolina is coming up next Friday for a home visit. I have pretty much narrowed it to just a couple of schools. Kentucky, North Carolina, and Georgia Tech." Conspicuously absent from his list, at the time, was Illinois. Bruce Weber had courted Carter rather heavily the last part of the basketball season, including making a couple of appearances at Scott County High School. But when asked if Illinois was out of the picture, Carter confirmed that the Illini were no longer in his list.

For whatever reason, Carter must have changed his mind and Thursday night Ryan Lemond of WLEX-18 confirmed that Jared Carter had given his verbal commitment to Kentucky.

North Carolina was considered the favorite for Carter services recently, until Kentucky stepped up the pressure. "I went to Indianapolis and I enjoyed watching those games (the first and second round games of Kentucky in the NCAA tournament), it was real intense," said Carter. "So was the practice." In between the second round win over Cincinnati and the trip to Austin for the regional semi-final and final, Carter was invited to Memorial Coliseum on the UK campus, to take in a practice. Did anything in particular catch his eye? "I wasn't really looking for one specific thing, I was just watching the practice. I like how they use the big man, just the way they ran the ball and how intense the practice was. I mean the intensity was great, especially for that time of year and with the tournament."

One problem Kentucky might have been concerned about was a dearth of big men already on their roster. And Carter was quick to say that it did bother him a bit. "Yes it does make a big difference," Carter confessed. "It makes a big difference, I guess. I have to admit it does." One option Carter would have to put some space between him and the other big men, as far as class goes, is to redshirt. And he's not entirely opposed to the idea. "I guess if I get redshirted, there is nothing bad about that. I mean it just gives you a year to get built up and used to college, and to get used to college game play."

Those questions may or may not need to be answered. For now UK has landed a third 7-footer for its roster.

One factor that may have played in Kentucky's corner is the parents. Carter's mom really pushed for Jared to stay close to home. "My mom wants me to go to Kentucky, and I have no problem going to Kentucky."

I guess he didn't. Congratulations to Tubby Smith and staff for landing their man.

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