John Calipari announces Shaedon Sharpe will not play for Kentucky this season


Kentucky Wildcats guard Shaedon Sharpe (21) rolls his eyes to chants of “We want Shaedon” during the UK vs. Mississippi State basketball game on Tuesday, Jan. 25, 2022, at Rupp Arena in Lexington, Kentucky. UK won 82-74. Photo by Jack Weaver | Staff

Hunter Shelton

Shaedon Sharpe will not take the court for Kentucky basketball this season.  

“After talking with Shaedon and his parents, we want to end all of the speculation by again saying that he will not play for us this season,” UK head coach John Calipari tweeted on Monday morning. 

Sharpe arrived in Lexington in January, enrolling in classes early after graduating from Dream City Christian School in Phoenix in December.  

The 18-year-old was ruled eligible to play for the Wildcats this season but had not seen the floor since his arrival.  

Calipari had previously stated that Sharpe could play if the coaching staff felt that he was ready to do so, but that he was “a ways away” from playing in games for UK.  

On Jan. 20, Sharpe was ruled eligible for the 2022 NBA draft as an early-entry candidate, putting speculation on whether he would ever play a game for Kentucky if he were not used this season. 

Currently rated as the No. 6 prospect in the 2022 draft by ESPN, Sharpe’s talent is valued highly by the NBA, regardless of if he has a career as a Wildcat or not.  

According to Calipari, however, there are no plans for Sharpe to be anywhere other than Lexington next year.  

“He is committed to bettering himself and our team in practice this year and being better prepared to lead us next season,” Calipari said.  

Sharpe has not yet made it clear that he will return to the Bluegrass for the 2022-23 season, but all signs now point in that direction.