Two prominent transfers are on the new coach of Kentucky’s radar.

According to Kevin Sweeney of Sports Illustrated, Mark Pope, the coach of New Kentucky, attended the NBA G League Elite Camp in Chicago over the weekend with an eye toward two high-profile transfers.

The G League Elite Camp, which is like to the NBA Draft Combine, features second-tier draft prospects in a combine environment. This year’s camp included Miami player Wooga Poplar and Kentucky transfer portal target Chaz Lanier of North Florida.

Lanier and Poplar can return to school by withdrawing from the 2024 NBA Draft before May 29.

According to Matt Norlander of CBS Sports, Kentucky seems to be in a favorable position regarding Chaz Lanier, who is ranked as the No. 11 transfer and the No. 3 shooting guard in the transfer portal by 247Sports.

“North Florida’s Chaz Lanier may not have a big name, but he’s attracting attention from prominent schools,” Norlander mentioned on a recent episode of the Eye on College Basketball Podcast with Gary Parrish. “It appears that Kentucky may be one of those schools, and if not Kentucky, then possibly Tennessee, or even BYU.”


Chaz Lanier - 2023-24 - Men's Basketball - University of North Florida  Athletics

After completing four seasons with the Ospreys, the 6-foot-4, 190-pound guard entered the transfer portal on April 24, having previously expressed interest in exploring the possibility of entering the 2024 NBA Draft.

Alongside Kentucky, Lanier is also fielding interest from a wide array of other programs, including BYU, Cincinnati, Duke, Florida Atlantic, Illinois, Kansas State, Louisville, Maryland, Miami, Mississippi State, Oklahoma, Tennessee, Vanderbilt, Villanova, and West Virginia.

In his senior season at North Florida, Lanier started in 31 out of 32 games, showcasing impressive stats with an average of 19.7 points, 4.8 rebounds, and 1.8 assists per game. He boasted strong shooting percentages, hitting 51.0% from the field, 44.0% from beyond the arc, and 86.4% from the free throw line. Lanier consistently scored in double figures in all but one game, recording 15 games with 20 or more points and four games with 30 or more points, including notable performances of 35 points against North Alabama, 33 points against Appalachian State and Bellarmine, and 30 points against Charleston Southern. He achieved a season-high of 35 points in a game against North Alabama and secured two 33-point games, a 30-point outing, and one double-double during the season.


Wooga Poplar scores 25 points, leads No. 24 Miami to win over La Salle |

Over his four-year collegiate career solely at North Florida, Lanier has appeared in 104 games, with 49 starts, maintaining career averages of 8.9 points, 3.1 rebounds, and 1.2 assists per game. He has exhibited consistent shooting prowess, hitting 40.7% from three-point range and 86.4% from the free throw line. Lanier is also on the cusp of becoming a 1,000-point scorer, being only 71 points away from achieving this milestone.

As for Poplar, he is ranked as the No. 19 overall transfer and the No. 5 shooting guard in the transfer portal by 247Sports. In his junior season at Miami, Poplar started in all 29 games he appeared in, posting a career-best average of 13.1 points per game, along with 4.8 rebounds and 2.1 assists. He maintained solid shooting percentages, hitting 42.6% from the field, 38.5% from beyond the arc, and 86.4% from the free throw line. Poplar’s notable performances included a season-high of 25 points in a victory over La Salle, 19 points and eight rebounds in a loss to Kentucky at Rupp Arena, and three double-doubles throughout the season, including a 13-point, 11-rebound performance in a win over Georgia.

In 2022–23, Poplar was a sophomore with the Hurricanes, starting 36 of 37 games. He averaged 8.4 points, 3.3 rebounds, 1.5 assists, 1.1 steals, and a 37.5% field goal percentage. He scored 16 points in an Elite Eight victory over Texas, which enabled Miami to go to its first-ever Final Four.

Poplar has played in 100 career games with 65 starts throughout his three college seasons, all with the Hurricanes. He averages 7.7 points, 3.1 rebounds, and 1.3 assists per game while shooting 36.5% from beyond the arc with over 100 career three-pointers.

Kentucky is not the only school recruiting him; other colleges include St. John’s, Kansas, Villanova, Temple, Ole Miss, Florida State, and Arizona State.

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