Report: Mark Pope shock the fans as he re-recruit 5 star player back to kentucky

Mark Pope is attempting to entice Reed Sheppard to return to Kentucky.
Is it possible for the national freshman of the year to play his sophomore year in Lexington thanks to the new coach at Kentucky?
Making a phone call to national freshman of the year Reed Sheppard was perhaps Mark Pope’s first task as the new head coach of Kentucky.

Or maybe his father, to see if he can get the Wildcats guard to come back to UK for his sophomore season.

Pope and Jeff Sheppard, Sheppard’s father, were roommates as well as teammates at Kentucky from 1993 to 1996.
“I’m thrilled. I was psyched up like crazy,” Sheppard said to WKYT. Had a brief conversation with Mark last night. The older members of the squad were chatting on our phones nonstop. just brought back

as a rival, as a friend, and as a roommate. I believe Kentucky is about to fall in love with Mark Pope all over again.”


Sheppard, who was voted Most Outstanding Player of the 1998 Final Four and won two national titles in 1996 and 1998, has direct experience with the new head coach Kentucky will have.
“Mark brought phenomenal energy every, single day to practice, every, single day to study hall, every, single day to Wildcat Lodge, and Kentucky fans fell in love with him as a player,” Sheppard stated. “He’s going to bring that same energy, that same level of passion and commitment, and Kentucky is going to re-fall in love with Mark Pope.”


Naturally, the conversation turned to Reed, who is expected to be a top ten pick in the 2024 NBA Draft despite being named national freshman of the year by the USBWA, NABC, ESPN, CBS Sports, and The Field of 68, as well as Dick Vitale’s Diaper Dandy of the Year after averaging 12.5 points, 4.1 rebounds, 4.5 assists, and 2.5 steals in 28.9 minutes per game while shooting 53.6% from the floor, 52.1% from three, and 83.1% from the free throw line off the bench. He was selected SEC Freshman of the Year and Second Team All-SEC by the Associated Press and league coaches, respectively.



“Mark was the first college coach to recruit Reed. “He recruited him when he was seven years old,” Sheppard claimed. “Mark came through town; he was coaching at Georgia at the time. He came in mostly to spend out with the family. He sat down and said, “Okay, Reed, I’m going to be the first coach to recruit you.” Pope has been recruiting Reed since he was seven years old. We’ll see what sort of recruiter he is and if he can bring him on board.”

Sheppard concluded the season rated in the top 10 all-time at Kentucky among freshmen in five statistical categories: first in 3-point field goal percentage (52.1), second in thefts (82), sixth in made 3-pointers (75), and eighth in assists.

According to, Sheppard led the country in 3-point field goal percentage, sixth in true-shooting percentage (69.9%), and seventh in effective field-goal percentage (67.9%). He was the only player in the country with at least 145 assists, 80 steals, and 70 three-pointers until March 24.





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